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Notre Dame quarterback Jack Coan showed improvement and poise in his lone year as the Fighting Irish starter

Notre Dame quarterback Jack Coan's name hasn't popped up on  any of the first-round NFL mock drafts coming out these days, but in a quarterback class that has no solidified order, the veteran's success at both Wisconsin and Notre Dame will help him stand out as teams dive further into the position group looking for a mid-round gem. 

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Coan showed his experience as a fifth-year player overseeing the Fighting Irish offense in 2021, earning an 88.2 passing grade and throwing for career highs in yards, yards per attempt and touchdowns.

Stats 2018 2019 2021
Games 5 14 13
Passing yards 515 2,727 3,150
Passing touchdowns 5 18 25
Yards per attempt 5.5 8 8.8

Coan originally committed to play football at Wisconsin and won the starting job in the final games of the 2018 season after not seeing much action throughout his first year. The next season, he led the Badgers to a 10-4 record and a trip to the Rose Bowl, passing for 2,727 yards and 18 touchdowns with a school-record 236 completed passes.

Still, Coan struggled against some of the top-tier opponents in that 2019 season and was hoping to get the chance to bounce back in a big way in 2020. But a preseason injury forced him to miss the entire season. From there, the highly touted Graham Mertz stepped in — and, just like that, Coan’s time as the starter was done. 

Later that season, the Sayville, New York, native entered the transfer portal. In the span of a few months, the former big man on campus was moving his things out of his Madison apartment. 

“I'm not sure if robbed is the right word,” Coan said. “Honestly, you always hear about in the recruiting process out of high school that college football is a business. You try to pick the school where it doesn't feel like a business and you trust the coach and you think they have the best interests of you. But it really takes a situation like that to really make it real and lay it out for you. I wouldn't say anything was wrong. I think everything happens for a reason and I was glad it took me to Notre Dame. I was thankful for my time at Wisconsin and happy for Graham and them moving forward.”

Once the writing was on the wall, Coan put his name in the transfer portal with one year of eligibility in his back pocket. Being offered a scholarship and a chance at the starting job as quarterback at Notre Dame was a dream come true. 


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