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A bitter Cade McNamara opens up about his time at Michigan

During the 2021 season, now-former Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara led the Wolverines to a win over Ohio State, a Big Ten Championship, and a spot in the College Football Playoff. But one year later, he lost his starting job, suffered a season-ending injury, and ended up transferring to Iowa. In an interview on “The Room,” podcast co-hosted by Houston Texans QB Kyle Allen and QBs coach Jordan Palmer, McNamara spoke about a wide range of topics including his QB battle with J.J. McCarthy and how the Wolverines handled his injury.

Cade McNamara Michigan

What did Cade McNamara say about battle for the QB1 job at Michigan?

McNamara called being voted captain by his fellow teammates his “highest high” and losing the Wolverines’ starting QB job to J.J. McCarthy his “lowest low.” (Quotes via MLive)

“Which is kind of crazy,” he said. “I mean, I thought a low was a redshirt-freshman year — then, here I am with just a completely new perspective.”

“There were times where I thought I shouldn’t have gotten pulled,” McNamara said. “There are times that I think I could have helped the team out in a better way.”

“I was well aware there was going to be competition,” McNamara said. “That’s just how coach Harbaugh has always stated it. That’s how he’s always treated it, and that’s fine with me.”

“Then the day after I get voted captain, coach Harbaugh tells the team that Michigan has two starting quarterbacks and we’re going to be splitting games,” McNamara said. “I have the first game and he has the second game. Some stuff is going on, talk-around-the-team stuff — some stuff that I just won’t get into.”

Cade McNamara Michigan

What did McNamara say about how Michigan handled his injury?

After losing the starting to McCarthy, McNamara still got into the game against Connecticut, but he suffered an ACL injury that ended up putting him out for the rest of the season.

“I completely messed it up, I tore my MCL,” McNamara said. “I didn’t know this until my MCL was messed up, but I tore my patellar halfway through the season last year, actually against Michigan State. That’s a whole story in itself.”

McNamara claims that Michigan advised him to continue playing this season, rather than getting surgery. He later got a second opinion from Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who is an orthopedic surgeon and also the team physician for the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Dodgers. McNamara said the doctor “was astonished,” with what he saw.

“My knee was completely open still, and (he) was determining whether to have a repaired MCL or get a cadaver and full reconstruction,” McNamara said.


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W.G. Brady
W.G. Brady
W.G. Brady is a Detroit-based journalist who has been covering the Detroit sports scene for Detroit Sports Nation for several years. He is in his early 30s and has a wealth of experience in the industry. Throughout his career, W.G. has established himself as a respected and knowledgeable journalist known for his in-depth coverage of the teams and athletes in Detroit. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for sports, W.G. has become a go-to source for fans and readers looking for the latest news and analysis on the Detroit sports scene. He has a good reputation in the sports community and is respected for his unbiased coverage of sports events. W.G. is known for his ability to uncover hidden stories and provide unique perspectives on the teams and athletes he covers. He has a good understanding of the city of Detroit and its sports culture, which he uses to inform his reporting and analysis. He continues to be a respected journalist in the Detroit sports industry.

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  1. First off, we will always love Cade for helping to change the culture at Michigan, being a team leader, beating Ohio and getting us to the playoff. And while I get that he is bitter about losing his job, each season is different. The best player needs to play, especially at QB, and quite frankly there is really no comparison between Cade and JJ. JJ is a better QB period. Hard to argue against that considering we are 13-0 and how JJ looked vs Ohio St. His running ability completely changed our offensive dynamic. Also, Cade was subpar in the first game of the season. He had a chance to state his case and didn’t look very good. He will always be an Ann Arbor legend, I just wish he went out a little quieter.

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