Clemson coach Dabo Swinney on quarterbacks, exit interviews
Former five-star quarterback Hunter Johnson is set to transfer from Clemson.
Johnson had been battling with senior Kelly Bryant and freshman Trevor Lawrence for the starting quarterback job.
Johnson and head coach Dabo Swinney confirmed the news in a statement released Monday afternoon.
“I want to thank Coach Swinney and the Clemson family for giving me the opportunity to be a part of something special,” Johnson said. “I’ve met some amazing people who I will forever call family. I am a better man and a better football player because of my time spent at Clemson. Go Tigers!”
The Indiana native played in seven games last season as a true freshman, completing 21 of 27 passes for 234 yards with two touchdowns and one interception.
He will have to sit out the 2018 season wherever he lands.
“While it is always disappointing to lose a great person and a great player, I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to work with Hunter and watch him grow and develop over the last year and a half,” Swinney said in the statement. “Hunter is one of the best young men I have ever coached and has a very bright future ahead of him.
“I wish him all the best as he decides on his destination.”
Multiple reports, including one from 247Sports, suggested Purdue and Northwestern as potential landing spots for Johnson.
Johnson, Bryant, Lawrence and redshirt freshman Chase Brice were all the featured quarterbacks in Clemson's spring game.
"We've got several guys who are ultra talented," Clemson co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott said Monday morning in a Columbia radio interview on The Rich Taylor Show. "Four guys we had going through spring ball, we could win a championship with any of those four guys. We have been fortunate to have our starter healthy for several of these years. Anytime you have that situation especially at the quarterback position, it is only natural. We had Zerrick Cooper before the spring started to go to Jacksonville State. He felt like he was ready to play."