Despite Jack Tuttle’s intention to enter the transfer portal, he will remain Indiana’s backup quarterback.
Tuttle’s news trickled out Monday morning, and IU head coach Tom Allen confirmed it at his weekly press conference. Back in August, the NCAA instituted windows for the transfer portal, meaning Tuttle can’t actually go into the portal until December 5 — the day after the College Football Playoff field is selected. He’ll remain with the Hoosiers through the end of the season.
Allen met with the senior last week and discussed this, and the situation won’t impact the backup quarterback picture for Indiana.
“I trust Jack,” Allen said. “And he and I have talked that through. I believe that he’s always been in the past ready when called upon. And I don’t think that’s going to change.”
Tuttle competed with junior Connor Bazelak for the starting job in the offseason, and Allen and his staff ultimately went with Bazelak. Tuttle was still named a team captain.
The Utah transfer goes out for the coin toss, along with the other captains, before each game. But he has not yet seen game action this season. He saw the field during six games in 2021, including two starts. He played in three games during IU’s big 2020 season, including starts in the win at Wisconsin and in the Outback Bowl against Ole Miss.
Sophomore Dexter Williams II is third in line at quarterback, and the Hoosiers are pleased with his progress. But Allen saw no reason to stray from Tuttle as the backup quarterback based on his postseason intentions.
Bazelak praised Williams’ locker-room presence and said his arm is already sticking out.
“He’s super talented. He’s got a cannon,” Bazelak said. “As a quarterback, you know when someone has a strong arm. Right when I came in and saw him throw, I could tell that he freaking zips it in there. I think that’s one of his best traits.”
Williams redshirted in 2020 and missed all of 2021 after tearing his ACL during spring ball.
Offensive coordinator Walt Bell has also liked what he’s seen from Williams. He said there are things he needs to improve at and continue developing, but that his skill set could allow him to thrive when his time comes.
“The biggest thing for me (with Williams) is just continuing to clean up a lot of his pocket fundamentals, throwing base, those are a lot of little things that we get a chance to do every single day,” Bell said. “He prepares every day, studies every day. He’s going to have a chance to be a really good player when called upon.”
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