What’s going on? Tennessee lands Stanford grad transfer Keller Chryst.
Stanford grad transfer Keller Chryst going to Tennessee
And now everything is all better.
While he wasn’t quite the biggest quarterback grad transfer fish out there – Arizona’s Brandon Dawkins might be a wee bit better – Keller Chryst was a big get for Tennessee.
Head coach Jeremy Pruitt all but stood with a torch in one hand and a tablet in the other that said, “Give me your tired, your poor, your mediocre grad transfer quarterbacks looking to compete for a job,” as he and the program went after as many options as possible to improve the nation’s 108th-best passing game.
But when East Carolina’s Gardnew Minshew chose Alabama, the writing was on the wall – the Vols were almost certainly going to get Chryst.
The school of Manning, and Martin, and Shuler had six players throw at least one pass last season, combining for 2,084 yards and 11 touchdowns and ten interceptions. It needed more options to compete for the starting job this spring.
Quinten Dormady left, leaving Jarrett Guarantano and Will McBride as the main men, with neither one setting the world on fire last year – or even generating a spark. But that’s partly due to an offensive line that allowed 35 sacks, and an underwhelming receiving corps that wasn’t quite up to expectations.
And now it’s up to Chryst, a former four-plus star recruit who was considered to be the next great Stanford quarterback. No one was thinking he’d be another Andrew Luck, but with 6-4, 220-pound size and a next-level, pro style arm, he was supposed to be it.
He saw a little bit of time early on, but he could never quite take the job and make it his own.
And then he started to look the part over the second half of 2016. Just when it seemed like he broke through – finishing the year with ten touchdown passes and two picks – he suffered a knee injury.
Okay at times over the first half of last season, he struggled in a brutally ugly win over Oregon State – even though he led the team to a late score to save the day – and was yanked for KJ Costello. Chryst finished hitting 54% of his passes for 962 yards and eight scores with four picks, not playing in the last six games.
And now Stanford has to hope Costello is right – he’ll miss the offseason drills with a hip problem – and Tennessee is banking that it got a smart veteran who can at least get the chains moving.