CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Now that Jarren Williams has won the starting quarterback job, the battle continues to find his backup.
First-year Miami head coach Manny Diaz announced Monday that Williams would start for the Hurricanes in their Aug. 24 season opener against Florida in Orlando.
The decision was somewhat of a surprise after highly touted Ohio State transfer Tate Martell was widely considered to be the front-runner.
Williams played in just one game during the 2018 season. He was 1-of-3 for 17 passing yards and also scored on a 1-yard run.
Redshirt freshman N'Kosi Perry, who was also vying for the job, was 4-2 as a starter a season ago.
"We can win with all three of these guys," Diaz told reporters Tuesday.
Instability at the position last season led Diaz's predecessor, Mark Richt, to alternate between Perry and Malik Rosier, who has since graduated.
"It's good to have a guy, you know what I mean, and I felt like, at times, we didn't have that a year ago," Diaz said. "Like, this is our guy. We're going to rally around our guy. We're going to protect our guy."
So who's the guy who'll back up the guy?
"We told them right now that we felt it was too close to call in terms of who the backup would be, so we want both of those guys to be able to fight that out and find out," Diaz said. "Because, you know, I know it's the old story, but you're a snap away."
Williams insisted there are no hard feelings between the quarterbacks now that the No. 1 job has been settled.
"We're all in this together," Williams said. "We talked about it. We're brothers and we're a team, so they support me and I support them the same way."
Although Williams may be Diaz's guy, Diaz stressed that he believes the Hurricanes can win with all three.
"For me, the story is that three guys proved on our practice field that they can win, that they can lead the University of Miami to wins," he said. "Where we were on Jan. 1 when we weren't sure that there was a guy that could do that, I think that's the benefit."