If Michigan is planning to move forward with Brandon Peters as its starting quarterback, Jim Harbaugh won’t say it directly.
Harbaugh was asked about the position at his Monday news conference, two days after Peters, a redshirt freshman, replaced senior John O’Korn and completed 10-of-14 passes for 124 yards and a touchdown in a 35-14 home win over Rutgers.
O’Korn, who has been filling in for injured starter Wilton Speight, was ineffective early against the Scarlet Knights, completing just 3-of-6 passes for 13 yards and an interception. The game was tied 7-7 midway through the second quarter when Peters saw his first significant action of the season. He instantly led the Wolverines down the field for a touchdown and played the rest of the game.
After Saturday’s game, Harbaugh spoke highly of Peters’ performance and seemed to indicate it would be his job moving forward. On Monday, Harbaugh again was complimentary of Peters but said he will compete with O’Korn in practice ahead of Saturday’s game against Minnesota.
“We’re preparing both quarterbacks, not naming a starter today. We’ll see how the week progresses. Our system is a meritocracy where the best players play. It was time for Brandon to play. He went in and acquitted himself very well. He will play again. He will play again this week.”
Later in the news conference, Harbaugh conceded Peters will “likely” get the start.
“Build on the successes that he had in the ballgame and have a real good full week of practice. We’re going to prepare both quarterbacks,” Harbaugh said. “Like I said, Brandon will play. It’s likely he’ll start.”
When pressed what “likely” means, Harbaugh offered there being a “51 percent chance” Peters will start in a light moment with reporters.
Harbaugh said getting that many game reps will help Peters “a lot” moving forward. Now it’s time to build off that experience during practice and moving to Saturday.
With the win over Rutgers, the Wolverines bounced back from the loss at Penn State and are now 6-2 (3-2 Big Ten) on the year.
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