SEC East Starting Quarterback Enters Transfer Portal

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    Missouri quarterback Connor Bazelak announced plans to enter the transfer portal Thursday a day after the Tigers’ season ended with a 24-22 loss to Army in the Armed Forces Bowl.

    “This has been a tough decision that I have been thinking about for the last several weeks, but I wanted to be available for my team one last time in the ball game,” Bazelak said in a tweeted statement. “After much prayer and discussion with my family, I have decided to enter to transfer portal to continue my academic and athletic career. Thank you again, Mizzou!”

    Bazelak started 22 games in his three years in Columbia including all 13 of Missouri’s games during its 6-7 2021 season.

    The 6-foot-3, 212-pound quarterback broke onto the scene against Tennessee in the second game of his redshirt-freshman season. After Tennessee jumped out to a big first half lead over the Tigers, Missouri benched quarterback Shawn Robinson for Bazelak.

    Bazelak didn’t do enough to give the Tigers a comeback win but the quarterback completed 13-of-21 passes for 218 yards and an interception. Bazelak’s performance earned him the starting job as the quarterback impressed, winning co-SEC Freshman of the Year honors while leading Missouri to a surprise 5-5 record.

    The Ohio native was solid for Missouri this fall, completing 65% of his passes for 2,548 yards, 16 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. Bazelak threw for a season high 322 yards against Tennessee this season but it came in a blowout loss against soft coverage. The redshirt-sophomore completed just 61% of his passes in the game and threw two interceptions to no touchdowns.

    Freshmen Brady Cook and Tyler Macon served as Bazelak’s back ups this season, combining to complete 55-of-75 passes for 488 yards and three touchdowns. Missouri will add talented prep quarterback Sam Horn to the mix before next season.

    The transfer portal continues to be extremely active, especially at the quarterback position. Bazelak becomes the fourth SEC starter from a season ago to enter the portal this offseason, joining Florida’s Emory Jones, Auburn’s Bo Nix and Texas A&M’s Zach Calzada.

    South Carolina added a Oklahoma transfer quarterback Spencer Rattler and Missouri could join Auburn and Ole Miss as schools actively looking to add a quarterback in the transfer portal.

    Ryan Schumpert is a senior at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since the moment he stepped on campus. He just completed a three-year stint with the Daily Beacon, the last two of which as the Sports Editor. Ryan also spent last three years at Volquest providing strong Tennessee baseball coverage of Tony Vitello's resurgent program. While the bulk of Ryan's responsibilities involved beat coverage and writing, he also recorded podcasts for both the Beacon and Volquest. Did we leave out the part about Ryan interning for the Smokies? Ryan's work ethic, versatility, and strong writing skills are but three of the reasons why Vol Nation will be hearing from Ryan for years to come.