Martell gets OK to get started at Miami

The Columbus Dispatch
Former Ohio State quarterback Tate Martell has three seasons of eligibility at Miami. [Joshua A. Bickel]

Former Ohio State quarterback Tate Martell will be eligible to play for the University of Miami this season after the NCAA on Tuesday approved his transfer waiver.

“We are pleased with this ruling and appreciate the NCAA recognizing that this waiver met the criteria,” said Miami athletic director Blake James, who thanked OSU and the NCAA “for their assistance and support throughout the waiver process.”

Martell, a redshirt sophomore from Las Vegas, announced his decision to transfer Jan. 10, three days after quarterback Justin Fields enrolled at Ohio State after transferring from Georgia. Fields, a sophomore, saw his waiver approved by the NCAA on Feb. 8.

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Last season, Martell completed 23 of 28 passes for 269 yards and one touchdown and added 128 rushing yards and two scores as the primary backup to Dwayne Haskins Jr., a Heisman Trophy finalist who is moving on to the NFL.

At Miami, which began spring practice Tuesday, Martell will have three seasons of eligibility remaining.

He is expected to compete right away for the starting job with redshirt sophomore N’Kosi Perry and redshirt freshman Jarren Williams. Peyton Matocha, a freshman from Houston, will join the Hurricanes this summer.

“We aren’t ready yet … but we will be!” Martell posted on Twitter after the decision was announced by Miami. “Oh btw … I’M ELIGIBLE TO PLAY!”

The decision is good news for the Hurricanes, who were among the worst passing teams in college football a season ago as graduated Malik Rosier split snaps with Perry. Miami ranked 112th among 129 FBS teams in passing yards and 114th in passer rating.

Martell, 5 feet 11 and 210 pounds, was a highly touted quarterback coming out of Bishop Gorman High School in 2017. Rated the No. 2 dual-threat QB in the 247Sports rankings for that recruiting class, Martell threw for 7,507 yards and 113 touchdowns to lead Bishop Gorman to three state championships.

Martell already has made friends among the Hurricanes in offseason workouts.

“Tate, he’s a character," Miami tight end Brevin Jordan, who played with Martell in high school, told The Miami Herald. “He’s a 5-11 little white dude with tattoos, running around with high energy. … His swag is so Miami. Tate, he’s going to fit in.”

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