Jamie Newman is joining the Georgia Bulldogs as a graduate transfer but can he take the offense to higher heights than Jake Fromm was able to?
On Wednesday, the Georgia Bulldogs lost their three-year starting quarterback, Jake Fromm, as he declared for the NFL Draft. But it didn’t take long for head coach Kirby Smart and the Dawgs to answer questions of what’s next. On Saturday, they had the answer to that in the form of Jamie Newman.
The former Wake Forest quarterback announced Saturday on Twitter he is enrolling at Georgia as a graduate transfer, where he figures to be the favorite to start at quarterback for the 2020 college football season.
Newman makes his way between the hedges coming off a phenomenal season at Wake Forest that was actually more impressive than the numbers — which are still solid — would even indicate.
The dual-threat quarterback finished the season with the Demon Deacons completing 60.9 percent of his passes for 2,868 yards with 26 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He also showed off his wheels with 574 rushing yards and six trips across the goal line on the ground.
What the stats don’t tell you, however, is that Newman was banged up in October and a bit down the stretch. Moreover, they don’t highlight that Wake Forest’s offense was injury-riddled down the stretch, most notably with star wideout Sage Surratt seeing his season end prematurely. All of that limited Newman and the Demon Deacs as a whole down the stretch, especially matching up against teams like Clemson and Michigan State.
There are big shoes to fill in Athens, though, as Fromm led Georgia to a 36-7 record over three seasons, including three straight SEC East wins and a berth in the National Championship Game as a freshman. The question is if Newman can not only fill the void left by Fromm but perhaps take the offense to another level.
As good of a college football player as Fromm was, he was always a bit limited. He struggled to push the ball downfield consistently and was largely contained to the pocket to do his work. Both of things change with Newman coming into the fold as he’s been proficient as a downfield thrower and as a mobile quarterback who’s always a threat to take off and make plays with his legs.
Not only will Georgia’s passing game have new elements with Newman coming into the fold but that mobility will help open the rushing attack. While D’Andre Swift is NFL Draft bound as well, the likes of Zamir White, among others, are ready to fill the void. Pairing that group with Newman could make for a dynamic ground game that we’ve not seen from the Bulldogs in quite some time.
When you look at the success Newman enjoyed at Wake Forest with far less talent than will be around him at Georgia, you have to believe the graduate transfer quarterback is set up to thrive in Athens. And if he is able to make this offense more dynamic and, thus, more dangerous, the Bulldogs should not only be able to stay atop the SEC East but also be back in the College Football Playoff mix.