The competition to succeed Tyler Huntley at Utah just added a significant contender.
Jake Bentley, a graduate transfer from South Carolina, announced Monday that he will play his final season of college football in Salt Lake City.
Bentley started parts of four seasons for the Gamecocks, but missed almost all of the 2019 season after injuring his foot in the season opener. With Ryan Hilinski in place at South Carolina, Bentley decided to pursue other opportunities.
Bentley became South Carolina’s starting quarterback midway through his true freshman season and didn’t give up the job until he was injured. Over that 34-game span, Bentley threw for 7,527 yards, 55 touchdowns and 32 interceptions while completing 62.5 percent of his passes.
At Utah, Bentley will likely compete with Jason Shelley for the starting job. Shelley, who will be a redshirt junior in 2020, played in nine games in 2018 after Huntley was injured. During that span, he threw for 1,162 yards, five touchdowns and six interceptions while completing 58.3 percent of his passes. He also rushed for 192 yards and three scores.
In addition to Bentley, Utah will have two other transfer QBs on its roster next year: Cameron Rising (Texas) and Peyton Powell (Baylor). Rising sat out this year after leaving UT and will be eligible in 2010. Powell will likely need a waiver to be eligible next season.
Whoever wins the starting job will have big shoes to fill. Entering Utah’s bowl game, Huntley has thrown for 2,966 yards, 18 touchdowns and four interceptions while completing 73.7 percent of his throws. Huntley also has 257 yards and five touchdowns rushing.
Utah entered the Pac-12 title game with an 11-1 record and ranked No. 5 in the College Football Playoff rankings. However, the Utes were upset by Oregon and dropped all the way to No. 12 in the final CFP rankings. Utah will now play Texas in the Alamo Bowl on Dec. 31.
More from Yahoo Sports: