Upon being asked for his assessment of the Michigan quarterbacks, redshirt junior tight end Zach Gentry immediately said, “Joe Milton throws the hardest ball of all time.”
Imagining how that must feel for Gentry, members of the media let out a laugh.
During Michigan’s team trip to France in April, Milton said the furthest he’s thrown is 85 yards. Head coach Jim Harbaugh was quick to praise his true freshman’s development as an early enrollee.
“Joe did fantastic, better than you’d expect a freshman at mid-year to be. He’s really talented. Very high ceiling,” Harbaugh said after spring practice ended. “Big arm. You’d really have to be there to see it. You may have heard (it’s strong), but to see it in person … you’ve got to be there. Pretty good.”
The other emerging quarterbacks on Michigan’s roster include junior Shea Patterson, redshirt sophomore Brandon Peters and redshirt freshman Dylan McCaffrey.
Gentry, recruited to Michigan as a four-star pro-style quarterback from Albuquerque (N.M.) Eldorado in the 2015 class, had something to say on each of them.
On Shea Patterson:
“Shea moves around the pocket well.”
On Brandon Peters:
“Brandon Peters reads a good defense.”
On Dylan McCaffrey:
“Dylan McCaffrey has a quick release and is improving a heck of a lot.”
Once Patterson landed on campus in Ann Arbor, he expeditiously became best friends with Gentry. The relationship also associates Patterson’s little brother, Nick Patterson. Nick is a 2020 three-star tight end from San Antonio (Texas) Christian and has an offer from the Wolverines.
“He’s best friends with Zach Gentry,” Nick said. “I’ve talked to Shea while he was with Gentry, so he got to get in touch with me. He’s got a really good relationship with the tight ends at Michigan.”
Gentry said when Shea was bashful when appearing at Michigan because it was his first time being at any college other than Ole Miss.
As time went on, confidence materialized.
“He’s a confident guy and knows he has good qualities and a lot of abilities, so he carries himself like that,” Gentry said of Shea. “He and the other quarterbacks have matured a lot from spring ball, mostly mentally. They are making the right checks and reads.”
Harbaugh noted that he wants to name a starting quarterback “sooner than later.” Right now, nobody is giving in.
“It’s a tremendous week for finding out who you really like and who you can really count on,” Harbaugh said. “A live position like the quarterback position — I’d say, the thing that probably stands out the most is that nobody is backing down. Nobody’s giving in. A lot is still taking place. Still having at it.”