Mathisen: Assessing the Potential Starting Quarterbacks for Washington

Husky coach Jimmy Lake won't announce his choice until game time vs. Cal on Saturday

Posted on November 4, 2020

  By Nathan Mathisen of Dash Sports TV for SuperWest Sports

At the end of the 2019 season, everyone figured Jacob Sirmon was going to be the starting quarterback this year simply because he was the oldest and had the most experience in the offense. That hasn’t happened. Instead, he finds himself in a battle with three other quarterbacks. Here’s a brief look at all four.

Jacob Sirmon


Sirmon, a 6-foot-5, 240-pound redshirt sophomore, has a very similar build to Jacob Eason, who stands 6-6 inches and weighs around 230. 

As a high school player in 2017, Sirmon was the No. 1-ranked prospect in the State of Washington. Most expected him to wait behind Jake Browning a year before the job became his to lose.

Things didn’t go as planned, though, with Eason transferring to UW and beating out Sirmon for the starting job. 

Consequently, Sirmon was relegated to holding a clipboard for a second-straight year, and the only positive you can garner from that is the opportunity to learn behind two highly touted college quarterbacks. 

Now, three years removed from high school, having thrown just three passes, completing two of them for 19 yards, the hype for Jacob Sirmon at Washington has all but faded.

Sirmon | 247Sports

While Sirmon is similar in size to Eason, he doesn’t have Eason’s strong arm. Nor is Sirmon an extremely mobile quarterback. Like Browning, he’s more of a game manager.

Shortcomings aside, Sirmon was the top Washington prep prospect for a reason, so don’t be surprised if he finally gets his shot.

With three days to go until the Huskies kickoff against Cal, Sirmon is by no means a lock for the starting job. In fact, is not even the oldest QB on the roster anymore with the Huskies signing transfer QB Kevin Thomson.

Thomson, who is 25 years old, has had quite a journey. This will be his sixth season of college football over seven total years in college. One of the huge advantages Sirmon had over the other quarterbacks at UW was his three years of experience at UW.

But with a new offense, that experience doesn’t mean much.

Kevin Thomson


Thomson’s experience does, however, mean something, as he has experience actually playing in college football games.

Thomson spent the last two and a half seasons playing at Sacramento State where he threw for over 6,000 yards and 52 touchdown passes with only 12 interceptions. 

Big Sky Offensive Player of the Year QB Kevin Thomson | Matt York/AP via

One of the huge advantages that Thomson has over Sirmon is that he is also a mobile quarterback. We are in an age of football where dual-threat quarterbacks give the offense huge advantages.

And last season, Thomson ran the ball for over 600 yards and 12 touchdowns. 

One of the obvious knocks on Thomson, of course, is that he played at Sacramento State, rather than at a Division I program. 

Another warning sign with Thomson is his propensity to fumble. He coughed up the ball seven times last season, and while Sac State recovered all but two of them, that’s still too many for any one player in a season.

Dylan Morris

The next quarterback in the position battle is Dylan Morris.

Morris, a redshirt freshman, was a four-star high school prospect out of Graham, WA. 


At Graham-Kapowsin High, Morris threw for just under 10,000 yards with 99 touchdown passes in four seasons, showcasing his accuracy and strong arm. 

One knock on Morris is his size. At only 6 feet tall, he has the added disadvantage of not being able to wow anyone with his legs. Rather, he is a guy who will stand in the pocket, read the defense, and make the proper throw. If Morris is able to overcome his disadvantages in size and athleticism, he has everything else he needs to succeed.

Ethan Garbers

The final quarterback battling for the starting job is Ethan Garbers. 

Garbers, a true freshman out of Corona Del Mar, California, threw for over 5,000 yards and 71 touchdowns as a senior, with only five interceptions. Like Morris, he was also a four-star high school prospect. 


Garbers is most similar in size to Jake Browning at 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, compared to Browning’s 6-2 inches and 210 pounds. However, Garbers is much more mobile than Browning, having rushed for 573 yards and 12 touchdowns his senior season at Corona Del Mar High School.

Garbers is the least experienced of the quarterbacks, lacking time under center at the college level, but he does have the requisite skills, and the Huskies have started a true freshman before in Jake Browning. So it wouldn’t be outside the realm of possibility for him to take the QB reigns.


With four bona fide candidates, the Huskies have a lot of different ways they can go at the quarterback position, including playing more than one on a regular basis.

The decision won’t be announced before the Cal game this Saturday at 7:30 p.m., so we all will just have to wait until then to see who Jimmy Lake picks. 

You can watch Mathisen’s Husky Dash Sports Talk Show on Dash Sports TV, and read Mathisen’s other sports stories and columns at The Daily.

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