The Miami Hurricanes have their quarterback of the future — or the near future — and he is the one they wanted. Fourth-year junior graduate transfer. Cam Ward, a successful former Washington State and Incarnate Word starter from West Columbia, Texas, revealed on Saturday night that he will transfer to the University of Miami to play his fifth and final collegiate season. Ward’s statement came nearly two weeks after he stated that he will instead enter the NFL Draft. However, Ward changed his mind two days before the Jan. 15 deadline to formally enter the draft. He never engaged an agent, which allowed him to continue playing collegiate football the next season.

 

The 6-2, 223-pound Ward has been at the top of nearly every college football outlet’s list of best signal callers available in the transfer portal. A source told The Miami Herald three weeks ago that UM was optimistic about landing Ward because Ward and UM’s NIL Collective had agreed to terms on a very lucrative NIL deal and Ward had left UM with the impression that he was likely coming. But Ward instead informed UM that he was turning pro before changing his mind and committing to UM on Saturday.

“Ever since I declared, I haven’t gotten a lot of sleep,” Ward told 247Sports’ Chris Hummer. “It’s always been in the back of mind, creeping up there. I feel like it’s a win-win situation. I can go [to Miami] behind a great head coach, great offensive coordinator in a great offense.

I feel like I can improve my stock even more.” Ward has thrown for 13,874 career yards and 119 touchdowns, with 30 interceptions. He played his first two seasons at Incarnate Word in San Antonio before transferring to Washington State for the 2022 and 2023 seasons. Ward is expected to replace Wisconsin-bound Tyler Van Dyke, who threw 54 touchdowns and 23 interceptions in 32 games at Miami. Ward is a previous Washington State teammate of top UM linebacker Francisco Mauigoa.

He visited Miami Dec. 12-13 and then visited FSU later the same week. “To Coach Dickert, my teammates, and all Coug nation,’’ Ward posted on social media when he entered the portal Dec. 1, “thank you for the last two years. Thank you for supporting me day in and day out and for showing me some of the best days of college football; I am forever grateful.

“After a lot of reflection, I will be evaluating entering the 2024 NFL Draft as well as intending to enter my name into the transfer portal as a grad transfer.’’ AWARD WINNER Nov 17, 2023; Pullman, Washington, USA; Washington State Cougars quarterback Cameron Ward (1) and Colorado Buffaloes linebacker Jordan Domineck (44) in the first half at Gesa Field at Martin Stadium. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports James Snook USA TODAY NETWORK In Ward’s first of his two seasons at Incarnate Word in San Antonio, he won the Jerry Rice Award as the the best FCS freshman (2,260 yards and 24 touchdowns, with four interceptions) during the pandemic-shortened, six game campaign that was played in the spring of 2021. He followed that in the fall of 2021 by passing for 4,648 yards (65.1 completion percentage) and 47 touchdowns, with 10 interceptions. He has UIW records for career passing touchdowns (71) and yards (6,908) and led his first school to the Southland Conference title. He was then named the Southland’s Offensive Player of the Year. In 2022, Ward threw for 3,231 yards and 23 touchdowns, with nine interceptions. And this past season, he was 323 of 485, on 66.6 percent accurate, for 3,735 yards and 25 touchdowns, with seven interceptions. He also rushed for eight touchdowns this season. Top collegiate quarterbacks are so much in demand that NIL deals are reportedly paying them more than $1 million, even approaching $2 million, to play at major programs. A source said Ward’s UM NIL deal is within that range. Fox college football analyst Brock Huard said in late November on Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk show that Ward was one of those athletes. “Let’s just say I heard from one source, and a pretty dialed in one, that Cam Ward has 10 seven-figure deals waiting for him.” Ward’s Cougars won their first four games this season but then lost six in a row and finished 5-7. Ward finished fourth in the BCS in passing yards per game, averaging 311.3 yards per game. MIAMI QBS The Canes now have five quarterbacks on scholarship:

Ward, Jaccuri Brown, Emory Williams, Albany transfer Reese Poffenbarger and freshman addition Judd Anderson, an 18-year-old signal caller out of Warner Robins (Georgia) High, who was the only quarterback signee in the freshman Class of 2024. Poffenbarger, who led the FCS in yards passing and touchdowns this past season, announced on Monday that he is transferring to UM. Williams played in five games this past season, starting two, but sustained a compound fracture of his left arm in November at Florida State and is still rehabbing. Brown, who appeared in eight games with two starts as a freshman, played his only game of the 2023 season when he started UM’s 31-24 loss to Rutgers on Thursday in the Bad Boy Mowers Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. Brown finished 20 of 31 (64.5 percent) for 181 yards and one touchdown, with one interception. He also ran 15 times for 57 yards and two touchdowns. He subsequently decided to remain at UM instead of entering the transfer portal before the first of two portal windows recently closed. The second transfer portal window is April 15-30.

 

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