Auburn backup quarterback Joey Gatewood has left the program.
After multiple reports emerged earlier Wednesday, Tigers head coach Gus Malzahn confirmed on the SEC coaches teleconference that Gatewood has put his name into the transfer portal.
Auburn HC Gus Malzahn: "Joey Gatewood has entered the transfer portal and decided to move on. ... He's at the point now where he wants to be a starting quarterback, and he wants to start looking for schools where he can do that."— Justin Ferguson (@JFergusonAU) October 30, 2019
Auburn HC Gus Malzahn on the conversation with QB Joey Gatewood yesterday: "We had a talk. We just felt strongly that he needed the time right now to get it right and find the place to be where he can be a starting quarterback. That's what he wants, and I respect him for that."— Justin Ferguson (@JFergusonAU) October 30, 2019
Per AuburnSports.com, Gatewood didn’t practice with the team on Tuesday and told coach Gus Malzahn Wednesday morning that he would be leaving the team. Gatewood plans to finish out the semester at Auburn before any potential transfer, according to Al.com.
Gatewood competed with Bo Nix for starting job
Gatewood came to Auburn as a four-star recruit in the class of 2018. He spent that season as a redshirt freshman and competed with true freshman Bo Nix for the team’s starting job ahead of the 2019 season. Nix is 110-of-204 passing for 1,458 yards and 12 touchdowns and six interceptions this season. He’s also rushed 62 times for 194 yards and four scores.
With Nix winning the job, Gatewood has appeared in seven games in 2019. He’s thrown just seven passes in those seven games but he’s also rushed 29 times for three touchdowns in those appearances.
Gatewood’s departure from the team leaves 6-2 Auburn with three quarterbacks behind Nix on the roster — and none of them have thrown a pass in 2019. Redshirt freshman Cord Sandberg has rushed once for four yards this season; he came to Auburn after spending six years as a minor league baseball player in the Philadelphia Phillies’ system. Sandberg will move up to No. 2 on the depth chart following Gatewood’s departure, Malzahn said.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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