One of the biggest storylines for the Miami Hurricanes this spring with D’Eriq King out with a torn ACL this spring is who will emerge to become the second-team quarterback behind him this fall. Peyton Matocha and Tyler Van Dyke return from the Hurricanes 2020 roster and 2021 signee Jake Garcia is enrolled and ready for spring.
Garcia enrolled in January after signing with Miami in December following his late flip from USC. Matocha was a 2019 signee under former offensive coordinator Dan Enos and seems like a longshot to become the primary backup behind King. Van Dyke has the best combination of experience and skill among the three.
Miami needs King to be ready to play in the season opener against Alabama. Matocha completed two of his four attempts in 2020. Van Dyke did not complete a pass in either of his attempts in 2020. Garcia will be entering his second semester of college and would be an extreme challenge to have his first snaps against Alabama.
Chip Patterson of CBS Sports named the Miami Hurricanes QB battle this spring as a “2021 ACC spring football: Six key questions and storylines to follow as practices get underway.” Miami will begin spring practice next Monday, March 15. Following how Garcia, Matocha and Van Dyke play will be one of the biggest storylines.
"“What…does the battle look like for QB2 at Miami? After suffering a knee injury in the bowl game, D’Eriq King won’t be available for spring practice. He’s expected to make a full recovery and when healthy will return to his spot at QB1 on the depth chart.King’s commitment to the Hurricanes for 2021 keeps the team’s ceiling high and therefore it’s hard to imagine any of the other players in that room passing him on the depth chart. But that does not mean that this battle to sort out the pecking order in spring practice does not carry great significance.After all, King has suffered two knee injuries in his college career and there could be any tweak, twist or awkward step that suddenly puts one of his backups in a game with ACC title contention on the line.Tyler Van Dyke was the ninth-ranked pro-style quarterback from the 2020 class and able to redshirt last season after seeing just two games of action. He’ll be the one who knows the ropes while former five-star and early enrollee Jake Garcia tries to make a splash.Peyton Matocha and Ryan Rizik (Sic) are also on the spring four-deep, but the battle for King’s backup (and potentially his heir apparent) seems to be between the two top quarterbacks from Manny Diaz’s last two recruiting classes.”"
With three combined games, two completions, six pass attempts and three carries for a loss of two yards Miami is extremely inexperienced at QB behind King. N’Kosi Perry was a luxury as a backup QB for the Miami Hurricanes in 2020, but he is searching for an opportunity to play elsewhere after entering the transfer portal.
Having King back for Alabama and then getting Garcia, Matocha and Van Dyke snaps the three following weeks against Applachian State, Michigan State and Central Connecticut State entering before the ACC schedule is critical for the 2021 season and beyond. Garcia and Van Dyke will likely compete to be the starting QB in 2022.