Brandon Wimbush Transfer “News” Should Have Been Unsurprising

Late on Christmas Eve night “news broke” that Brandon Wimbush would be utilizing a graduate transfer for this 5th year.  Why Brett McMurphy formerly of ESPN decided to break the news on Christmas Eve night when it shouldn’t have been news to anyone still surprises me.  After Wimbush lost the starting job in week four and Ian Book flourished, this should not have been news to anyone.

We purposely didn’t write anything about the Wimbush transfer on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day because Wimbush has been the consummate teammate during this entire season when he didn’t have to be.  For that reason, he didn’t deserve to have his Christmas holiday spent answering questions about a transfer after the season.  He also didn’t deserve for the news to be broken as though he was transferring immediately or had other priorities other than helping his team in the College Football Playoffs.

It should have been pretty obvious to everyone that this was going to be the outcome.  If anything, it would have actually been news if Wimbush were to return to Notre Dame for a 5th year.  With the Irish facing an even bigger roster crunch in 2019 than in 2018, there wasn’t room on the 85 man roster for a 4th quarterback.  So the only way Wimbush was returning to Notre Dame would have been at another position.  If he wanted to play quarterback somewhere in 2019, it was always going to be at another program.

Now that it’s the day after Christmas, I’ll weigh in though.  Brandon Wimbush deserves to transfer wherever he wants and wherever gives him the best chance to fulfill his NFL dreams.  Unlike Kelly Bryant of Clemson, Wimbush stayed enrolled at Notre Dame and engaged with the team while losing his starting job.  By doing so, he ended up getting another chance to start on Senior Day when Ian Book was hurt keeping Notre Dame’s perfect season intact.  Bryant on the other hand, left Clemson almost immediately and when Trevor Lawrence got hurt versus Syracuse, it nearly cost the Tigers the game.

Wimbush handled the situation this year like a pro and hopefully he will get a chance to be THE guy somewhere next year that gives him the opportunity to make it to the NFL.  He had his struggles in the Notre Dame offense, but he was 13-3 as a starter for the Irish and without him, Notre Dame is not 12-0 this year and getting ready for a playoff showdown with Clemson.

The other aspect of the news breaking this week that is unfortunate for Wimbush is that the optics outside the program will be that he isn’t engaged and isn’t thinking about the playoffs when nothing could be further from the truth.  Wimbush is locked in with his teammates right now and focused on getting Notre Dame to the championship game.  If called upon, he will be ready to go and will do whatever it takes to get the Irish to the next round.

In terms of possible landing spots for Wimbush, there are a number of programs losing their starting quarterbacks to the NFL or graduation that could use a veteran “bridge” quarterback next season, but there will be plenty of time to debate those programs after.  Again, out of respect to Wimbush, we’ll leave all that speculation to other outlets. m

Over the last four years Brandon Wimbush has been everything that you want a Notre Dame football player to be.  Unfortunately his career will end with him in another uniform next year, but until then Wimbush hopefully has two more games in a gold helmet representing the University that he has spent four seasons representing so well.

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  1. Two things stand out about Brandon Wimbush. First, he is graduating from the Notre Dame, as a accounting major. That in itself is a major achievement. Second, the article clearly
    pointed, he was a dedicated and loyal team
    member. My hope he will transfer to the
    school that has a strong MBA program and
    immediately be enrolled. From my limited
    knowledge, Northwestern and Duke would be excellent choices. No matter where he goes,
    I wish him the best. As a ND alum, I am proud of him.

  2. This is no surprise, that’s true. My only regret is I can’t help but feel there was still a role for Wimbush on the team. He is a phenomenal runner with incredible ability to escape. A couple of times I saw a sure sack turn into a first down. As a RB I almost feel like he could have potentially broke records at ND. Imagine for a moment a backfield with Williams and BW, with Book’s passing abilities and his own good running ability. Wow. I almost feel like that would be an opposing defense’s worse nightmare. Who do you go after in that scenario?

    Now I know BW wants to be a QB. But if the NFL is his dream, to be honest, it will have to be at another position. I mean, does anyone honestly think he’s an NFL caliber QB? It’s not a knock on him by any means. But his elite power is his legs. Put the ball in his hands and let him take off, that’s where he shines.

    I’ll be sad to see him go. As noted above, he’s been a great teammate, he’s stayed tuned in (I wrongly thought he’d be stewing on the bench imagining where to go next year once Book took over). And I’m a bit disappointed because I can’t help but feel there was still a place on this offense for BW. But I wish him well next year (well, except any game against ND if there are any—I sincerely hope there is not).

  3. You knew he would be leaving!! AT best he’s 3rd string next year, and he wants to play just like anybody else!! Good luck to him he was a true team player, but he just could never get in the groove of a good QB!! He struggled from the get go with progression, accuracy and reading DEF. coverages! Great athletic ability does not always translate into great or even good QB skills!! TRIED his best coaching staff gave him every opportunity but it just didn’t work out, hope he finds a good situation to be a success next year!!

  4. It’s just ESPN doing what they always do–try to cast the Irish in a negative light. They’ll do anything to get an edge for their pet team, Alabama. Does anyone pay attention to them any more? Hard to understand why anyone would. It’s going to be sweet when Notre Dame plays Oklahoma for the national championship. I imagine their heads will explode. Now that’s something I’d pay to see!

  5. It will be tough seeing team player Brandon Wimbush leave the Notre Dame program. Once a Fightin Irish football player, always a Fightin Irish football player.

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