Luke Fickell needs a quarterback
The Wisconsin Badgers will likely be without Graham Mertz for the 2023 season. The Badgers quarterback announced he’d be hitting the transfer portal. New Badgers head coach Luke Fickell will need to find a replacement for next season. The Badgers quarterback room will look substantially different in 2023, even though Fickell wanted some pieces to stay the same.
It was assumed Fickell would try and find a quarterback in the transfer portal. The Badgers need better quarterback play in 2023 if they want to compete for a Big Ten Championship. Mertz doesn’t appear to have the skills to lead the program to those heights. The Badgers will probably want a dual-threat quarterback under Fickell.
According to Jeff Potrykus of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Fickell wanted Mertz to stay at Wisconsin and compete for the starting spot. Fickell will use the bowl practices to find out what the Badgers have at quarterback and then find other options through recruiting or the transfer portal.
#Badgers coach Luke Fickell said he encouraged Mertz to stay and see how things unfolded. Mertz chose not to pursue that option. Fickell said they'll use bowl prep to evaluate what is on hand and will have to add a body or two two to the QB room for 2023. https://t.co/Zvsog0iAQk
— Jeff Potrykus (@jaypo1961) December 4, 2022
The Badgers needed to move on at quarterback
While it’s understandable Fickell wanted Mertz to stay; the Badgers program needs to find another quarterback for 2023. Mertz needs to go to a program that can use his skills more effectively. The Badgers will have plenty of options in the transfer portal. Fickell has a history of success with grooming quarterbacks. If Fickell can find a quarterback with elite talent, the Badgers’ offense might be dangerous in the near future.