Last season, Colorado’s new starting quarterback led the Buffaloes to four straight wins and the program’s first national ranking in a decade. This year, he’s going to be an Oregon State Beaver. I may not be an insider, but experience and observations lead me to five reasons why I believe that will happen.
Sam Noyer was last year’s starter, but when he was in high school, it seemed to take forever for him to get any interest from the PAC-12. In fact, Colorado was the only PAC-12 offer he received, and he accepted it quickly despite knowing that CU already had seven quarterbacks.
Noyer red-shirted his first year at Colorado, then spent two seasons behind Steven Montez and then moved to safety in 2019. After the 2019 season, he announced that he was leaving Boulder. However, he never left. New head coach Karl Dorrell convinced him to stay and dangled the “starting quarterback” lure enough that Noyer stayed for the 2020 season and was indeed the starter.
But he won’t be with Colorado in 2021, and here are five factors that lead me to believe that Noyer is headed to Oregon State.
1. This time it’s for sure, Noyer is leaving Colorado
Noyer announced over the weekend that he is entering the transfer portal. Why? Primarily because recent shoulder surgery kept him out of spring drills and Tennessee transfer J.T. Shrout used Noyer’s absence to take the lead as the Buffs 2021 starter.
He’s also been bumped down another notch by Brendon Lewis, who replaced Noyer in the Alamo Bowl after Sam produced just 20 points in his final 25 drives of the 2020 season.
Sam has lost his place in Boulder and this time, he won’t be coming back.
2. Noyer believes in himself as a starting quarterback in the PAC-12
He has always believed he has what it takes to be a PAC-12 starting quarterback. He isn’t cocky about it, but he knows he has the talent and, especially, the leadership qualities that PAC-12 programs want. He’s believed in himself enough that he labored for four years before finally landing the starting spot.
3. He has already put the call out to the PAC-12
When Noyer announced his plan to transfer, he said he especially hopes to stay in the conference. For whatever reasons, my immediate sense was that he has already lined something up with a PAC-12 program.
Colorado coaches raved about J.T. Shrout and his performance in the spring game. But that game was two months ago, so why would Noyer wait so long to enter the portal if his demise in Boulder has been known for that long?
I suspect it is the same reason that his high school recruiting took so long. His resume’ is only marginal. And now, that resume’ is even more of an issue because of his shoulder injury and terrible drop in performance in 2020. So, it seems logical that lining up a new program would take some time.
And, that adds to the plausibility that he is making his transfer announcement now because he has already found a team, and an announcement of such will be forthcoming very soon.
5. Oregon State
Why do I believe Noyer will be signed by Oregon State?
Remember when we talked about Colorado being his only PAC-12 offer? That tells us that there was only one PAC-12 coach who appreciated Noyer’s skills enough to offer him a scholarship.
The coach who made that offer was Brian Lindgren, who is now the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Oregon State.
At that time, Noyer said, “I love coach Lindren. Our relationship has been phenomenal.”
Transferring to OSU makes a lot of sense for Sam. After all, he was a high school star in Oregon, his family is in Beaverton, and Lindgren is in Corvallis.
With an ailing shoulder and a declining resume’, it’s not likely that Sam would win the starting spot this summer at either Colorado or Oregon State, although I’m certain he’ll give it a good shot.
But, I think if you’re like Sam and you want to stick around college football for a sixth season, then why not do it in your home state, near your family, in a community that you know, and with the only offensive coordinator who believed in you enough to offer you a scholarship in the first place?