2019 Football Preview - Quarterbacks

It’s July, which means that there will be college football games played next month. As the Knights continue to prepare for the upcoming 2019 campaign, which kicks off Thursday, Aug. 29 at 7:30 p.m. from inside Spectrum Stadium, we will take a look at what UCF brings back and what fans of the Black and Gold have to look forward to this fall.

The past two seasons, UCF has had one of the best quarterbacks in the nation leading the way. McKenzie Milton was a Heisman candidate in 2017 and 2018, leading the Knights to back-to-back undefeated regular seasons. He set school records and impressed fans en route to a pair of Offensive Player of the Year honors in The American.

UCF faithful knows what happened late last season though. Milton went down with a devastating knee injury that will force him out this season. Luckily for UCF, there is a strong quarterback room heading into 2019 with the return of redshirt sophomore Darriel Mack Jr. and redshirt freshman Quadry Jones, as well as the additions of graduate transfer Brandon Wimbush and true freshman Dillon Gabriel.

Returning Quarterbacks
Darriel Mack Jr., r-Sophomore | 6-3, 230
Mack stepped in to start three games in 2018, winning at ECU, winning in a reserve role after Milton went down at South Florida, and winning the American Athletic Conference Championship against Memphis. Mack was named the games Most Outstanding Player after throwing for 348 yards and two touchdowns, while rushing for four more.  During the offseason, Mack went down with an ankle injury and will miss preseason camp.

Quadry Jones, r-Freshman | 6-0, 176
Jones was able to redshirt his first year at UCF even though he did see game action. In Mack's first start, Jones came in for one play, splitting out wide. Mack hit Jones behind the line of scrimmage, who then went deep to Adrian Killins Jr. for a touchdown in the freshman's lone attempt of the season.

New Quarterbacks
Brandon Wimbush, r-Senior | 6-2, 222
Wimbush comes to Orlando after spending four years at Notre Dame. With the Fighting Irish, Wimbush saw most of his action in the 2017 season, leading Notre Dame to victories over four teams that finished the year in the Top 25. He was just the third quarterback in school history to eclipse 500 rushing yards and 1,000 passing yards in a season. Wimbush got to UCF early in 2019 and worked with the offense through the entire spring and summer.

Dillon Gabriel, Freshman | 6-0, 186
Like Wimbush, Gabriel also enrolled at UCF early in 2019, getting an early start on his career. The true freshman comes to Orlando from Hawaii, where he was the 2018 Gatorade Hawaii Player of the Year. Gabriel set the state high school career record for passing yards and was All-State after throwing 105 career touchdowns at Mililani High School.

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The 2019 season gets started Aug. 29 when the Knights host Florida A&M at Spectrum Stadium. UCF will also play host to Stanford, UConn, ECU, Houston and South Florida as the Knights aim to win a third straight American Athletic Conference Championship and return to a New Year’s Six bowl for the third consecutive season.