J.J. McCarthy — the five-star quarterback committed to the Michigan Wolverines’ 2021 football recruiting class — announced on Monday that he will be transferring to the prestigious IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida for the final season of his high school career.
IMG routinely churns out some of the top talent in the country each year and prospects from far and wide typically transfer there to play against elite competition and boost their stock. McCarthy says that his decision is based on the “uncertainty of fall sports” in the state of Illinois, where he spent three seasons at Nazareth Academy.
Of course, this also means that McCarthy is likely to be an early enrollee at Michigan, which would have him in the quarterback room as early as January to prep for spring football and the 2021 season.
IMG Academy is no stranger to sending players to Michigan, as center Cesar Ruiz and quarterback Shea Patterson are among the recent players to have suited up for them. He joins fellow Michigan pledge Greg Crippen, an offensive lineman, as 2021 commits on the team.
Given McCarthy’s abilities as a leader and recruiter as a member of this class, it will be worth keeping an eye on the players and relationships he makes while at IMG Academy. This, along with the ability for a star passer to gain even more exposure against top talent, makes it an exciting move for the signal-caller.
We recently revisited McCarthy’s commitment to Michigan on the on-year anniversary of his pledge:
McCarthy is easily the most polished quarterback prospect that Harbaugh has recruited to Michigan. (The previous guys) have had some sort of mechanical flaw or flaws to work on with their game, but I do not see a ton of that with McCarthy. He can make about every throw on the field and even as a junior in high school still boasts impressive arm talent. Mechanically, everything looks good for a player of his age and that should only continue to get cleaned up and improved as he develops as a player. He is not exactly a dual-threat, but he is mobile enough to be a factor in the QB run game and make plays off-script.
The thing that strikes me the most about McCarthy is how infections an attitude and personality that he has. Michigan has not had a ton of that at the quarterback position in the last number of years. McCarthy is a winner and a prospect that has made big plays in big games. Aside from that, he is a leader and gets people to follow him and he wears the pride he has for his team on his sleeve. Anyone who follows him on social media knows how vocal and active he is in his support for Michigan and the players that choose to follow him.