After an offseason of guessing as to who the man behind center will be, Central Michigan football coach Dan Enos named a starting quarterback Wednesday afternoon.
It’s Cody Kater, the journeyman from Montague, Mich.
Kater, albeit small, had the experience advantage against redshirt sophomore Alex Niznak and redshirt freshman Cooper Rush in the offseason-long quarterback battle. Niznak will be No. 2 on the depth chart, with Rush third.
“Alex and Cody, in particular, have raised their level from even the spring until now,” Enos said Wednesday after practice. “Their comfortness with the offense was just off the charts. At the end of the day, we thought Cody played a little bit better, a little bit more consistent. He’ll be the starter. We looked at it more the big picture of all the practices. We put them in team situations every day; they all had chances with the 1s and 2s. It was very difficult, but we feel good about it.”
He was recruited by former head coach Butch Jones out of high school and decided to leave with Jones to Cincinnati, but transferred to Grand Rapids Community College after one season to return to CMU. At GRCC, he led his team to an undefeated season with 2,218 yards passing and 19 touchdowns while running for 356 yards and nine touchdowns.
At CMU, Kater’s played sparingly – Enos said Wednesday that Kater or Niznak didn’t give him a shot to win last season – with only two appearances, completing two passes for 12 yards, for the Chippewas in 2012.
Now he’s tasked with leading the Chippewas into Michigan Stadium on Aug. 31 to play No. 17 Michigan.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Kater said. “This is why you went to college, to play football at Division 1 – to play football at the highest level. You want to compete your butt off. You’re obviously looking forward to the whole thing, the gameday atmosphere. We know what has to happen.”