Could Justin Fields’ arrival at Ohio State lead to the departure of Tate Martell?
Martell served as the backup quarterback in 2018 to Dwayne Haskins. And less than two weeks after saying that he was ready to challenge Fields for the team’s starting job in 2019, Martell’s name is in the NCAA’s transfer database. Because Martell’s name is in the database, other schools are free to contact him about a possible transfer.
Can confirm: Tate Martell is in the NCAA transfer portal. Allows him the opportunity to speak to another school about a possible transfer from Ohio State.
— Kyle Rowland (@KyleRowland) January 10, 2019
Fields officially transferred to Ohio State from Georgia a week ago. He left Georgia after one season sitting behind starting QB Jake Fromm and could be ruled immediately eligible by the NCAA if he gets a waiver. Haskins has declared for the NFL draft.
Martell has spent two seasons at Ohio State and was a four-star prospect according to Rivals, which had him ranked as the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback in the class of 2017. Martell signed with Ohio State after committing to Washington (who was then coached by Steve Sarkisian) while in middle school and then Texas A&M.
Martell on 2019: ‘I’ve put two years of working my ass off’
Martell stated his case to succeed Haskins as Ohio State’s starter by saying that he had put in the time at Ohio State over the past two seasons while Fields hasn’t.
He had this to say before the Rose Bowl regarding a potential Fields transfer. From the Toledo Blade.
“If someone thinks they’re going to walk in and start, it’s probably not going to happen, just from having to learn the offense,” Martell said, wearing a backward cap and a scarlet hoodie as he met with reporters in a tent outside the stadium. “[Day] has an NFL-type offense that’s difficult to learn. … Why would I leave for someone who hasn’t put a single second into this program yet?
“I’ve put two years of working my ass off into something that I’ve been waiting for and dreaming of having my whole life. To just run away from somebody that hasn’t put a single second in winter workouts and doesn’t know what the program is all about, there’s not a chance.”
Martell’s comments came after a tweet days before Christmas advising someone not named to not swing and miss on their second opportunity. That tweet no longer exists.
Now Martell could be in the same position that Fields is in if he decides to officially transfer from Ohio State. He’s the second high-profile QB to be added to the transfer database this week. Alabama QB Jalen Hurts is also exploring a transfer.
Players who put their names in the transfer database are at risk of losing their financial aid from their current schools. As part of the transfer rule overhaul that put the database in place for the 2018 football season, schools have the right to take away financial aid for the upcoming term when a player decides he or she wants to be put in the transfer database.
Martell was the only other person besides Haskins to throw a pass for Ohio State in 2018. He was 23-of-28 passing for 269 yards and a touchdown. He also had 22 carries for 128 yards and two touchdowns. Those rushing stats made him Ohio State’s third-leading rusher in 2018.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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