Former Indiana QB Penix Jr. transfers to UW Huskies, rejoins DeBoer

Dec 14, 2021, 11:40 AM
UW Huskies Michael Penix Jr....
Michael Penix Jr of the Indiana Hoosiers throws a pass against the Northwestern Wildcats. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

The UW Huskies landed a former Kalen DeBoer starting quarterback via transfer after all.

A few weeks ago, it looked like DeBoer, the new UW Huskies head coach, was going to land his starting quarterback at Fresno State, Jake Haener, in a transfer. But Haener, who started his career at UW and reportedly was planning to return to Washington, decided to say at Fresno State rather than returning to the Pacific Northwest.

Now, the UW Huskies have landed a quarterback through the transfer portal, and this signal caller has experience playing for DeBoer as well.

That would be Michael Penix Jr., who is transferring to the Huskies from Indiana, where DeBoer was his offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2019. Penix announced that he is transferring to Washington in a post on his Instagram account.

During that 2019 season with DeBoer calling plays, Penix started six games for the Hoosiers and had far and away his best success at the college level as a redshirt-freshma. 2019 was DeBoer’s lone year coaching at Indiana before he went to Fresno State – where he’d previously served as offensive coordinator – as head coach in 2020.

The lefty quarterback completed over 68% of his passes for 1,394 yards and 10 touchdowns to four interceptions in six games before getting injured. He also rushed for just under 200 yards and two scores. Most importantly, though, Indiana went 5-1 during those six Penix starts.

Penix again started just six games in 2020 as he tore his ACL, and he was again effective, though some of his numbers took a hit. The Hoosiers went 5-1 once again in six Penix starts in 2020, but his completion percentage dipped to 56.4%. He did, however, set a new career high in touchdown passes with 14 while again throwing four interceptions.

Penix appeared in just five games for the Hoosiers in 2021, going 2-3 in those starts and completing 53.7% of his passes for 939 yards, four touchdowns and seven interceptions. He announced his intentions to transfer early in December.

For the UW Huskies, Penix not only brings familiarity with DeBoer and his offensive system, but he also helps add depth to a quarterback room that, prior to Penix’s commitment, had just two scholarship quarterbacks set to be on the roster in 2022 in two-year starter Dylan Morris and highly-touted recruit Sam Huard.

But with Penix coming to Washington, it’s unclear what the future holds for one or both of Huard and Morris in 2022 in terms of whether or not they will remain with the UW Huskies program.

Morris will be a redshirt-sophomore with three years of eligibility left while Huard will be a redshirt-freshman with four. Penix has two years of eligibility left.

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