Redshirt sophomore quarterback Alex Malzone announced that he would be transferring after he graduates this year. Malzone enrolled in January of 2015 and earned a start in his initial spring game. However, he never stepped on the field across three seasons. The closest he got was last weekend, when starter Wilton Speight and backup Brandon Peters were injured. Malzone was the #2 guy behind John O’Korn against Ohio State, but he wasn’t needed.
I said the following about Malzone during his recruitment:
Malzone runs a somewhat multiple offense and has experience dropping back, from shotgun, or from the pistol formation. He has a slight build and is a little short at a listed 6’2″. He runs his offense very well, is a good ball handler, and seems to be in command. He’s a good athlete who can get on the edge a little bit and make some things happen with his feet, but he’s not a blazer. Malzone gets the ball out on time and shows good accuracy and touch. His throws on skinny posts appear to be right on the money, but I question whether he has the arm strength to squeeze those in there against faster and longer defenders. He has a little bit of a hitch in his throwing motion where he brings the ball down to throw it, not totally unlike a right-handed version of Tim Tebow. Michigan’s coaching staff has been somewhat erratic with the quarterbacks they’ve recruited (the 6’3″ sorta dual-threat Russell Bellomy, the 6’3″ Shane Morris with a rocket arm, the 6’6″ Wilton Speight), but I look at Malzone and see him being too short and lacking the arm strength that Michigan likely wants.
I ended up giving Malzone a TTB Rating of 73 when he committed in the transition year between Brady Hoke and Jim Harbaugh, but with the other guys on the roster, it seemed unlikely that he would ever make an impact. He was passed up by literally every other scholarship quarterback on the roster, except classmate Zach Gentry, who moved to tight end.
This won’t affect Michigan next year, even though Speight is also transferring and O’Korn is graduating. Brandon Peters will go into 2018 as the expected starter, while Dylan McCaffrey has also earned high praise from the coaching staff. With two freshmen coming in the 2018 class, the Wolverines will have four scholarship quarterbacks on the roster – and the staff may pursue transfers at the position, too.