Wolken: Fields Thought He Was Better Than Fromm

Justin Fields thought he would beat out Jake Fromm and become Georgia's starting quarterback. He didn't – and he may transfer as a result

Tiki and Tierney
December 18, 2018 - 7:21 pm

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Georgia quarterback Justin Fields is reportedly exploring his transfer options, with Ohio State and Oklahoma identified as possible destinations.

Fields was the No. 2 overall player in the 2018 recruiting class – and the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback in the nation. With true sophomore Jake Fromm locked in as the team’s starting quarterback, however, a transfer from Fields is a legitimate possibility.

“It’s just the modern era of quarterbacks when you’re at an elite program,” USA Today Sports college football writer Dan Wolken said on Tiki and Tierney. “Georgia is now recruiting at the same level as an Alabama and as a Clemson. All these programs like to stockpile the 5-star athletes, and a lot of times that culture of competition works out really well for them. 

“But quarterback is just a different animal,” Wolken continued. “These guys know that they have a limited window of opportunity to show who they are as quarterbacks. They want to go in three years and do their thing in college and then go and be a first-round draft pick. So if you’ve got to sit behind a guy for two years, maybe even three years, people aren’t going to wait around for their turn.”

Fields saw limited action this season, completing 27-of-39 passes (.692) for 328 yards, four touchdowns and zero interceptions. He also ran 42 times for 266 yards (6.3 yards per carry) and four scores.

What could he do as a starter? Time will tell.

“Justin Fields is regarded as one of the best quarterback prospects ever in high school football,” Wolken said. “You go to the (camps) and quarterback gurus who all saw him, the word they use is transcendent talent. Now, is he going to live up to that? Quarterbacks all the time don’t live up to the hype and they’re hard to evaluate and people develop at different rates. 

“But there’s no doubt that given everything he accomplished in high school, he walked into Georgia believing he was going to go win that job, believing that he was a better football player than Jake Fromm. But because Fromm played well and Georgia never really lost, the role that Fields had wasn’t really suited for him. When they did try to use him, there was really no chance for him to take that job at all.”

No. 5 Georgia (11-2) plays No. 15 Texas (9-4) in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1. Kickoff is at 8:45 p.m. ET.