Former Miami point guard Quinten Rollins has exhausted his eligibility to play basketball. But what about that other year of eligibility he can use in another sport? (Recall, the NCAA gives you five years of eligibility overall, but only four can be used in a single sport.) Well, it appears Rollins is going the Greg Paulus route and using his fifth year of eligibility to play football.
According to the Miami Student, Rollins has joined the RedHawks for spring football practice, where he's playing cornerback. He was a standout player for Wilmington High School, earning first team all-Fort Ancient Valley Conference honors playing mostly on offense (including a 263-yard, 24-rush performance in a loss to Turpin his senior year), but he also saw time in the defensive backfield.
The football gambit was Rollins' idea; he ran it past Miami Director of Basketball Operations Sean Mock, who reached out to Chuck Martin to see if the football team had any interest. After reviewing Rollins' game film, Martin offered him a spot on the spring squad. As Martin put it:
"He’s a ridiculous athlete. His skill set is good enough to play college football. But he hasn’t played since high school and he played mostly offense, now he’s playing corner. So really [no expectations at this point]. We just told him to come out here and enjoy it and get comfortable and get coached up and kinda of walk before you run so we’ll see how it goes. Hopefully he can start to figure it out and become a pretty good player for us."
Yesterday's first day of spring practice certainly had a learning curve for Rollins, who's finding that the difference between high school and college football is just as big as the difference between high school and college basketball. But he's working closely with his new teammates and his new coaches to get himself in game-ready shape.
Goodness knows the RedHawks need all the help they can get next season. Rollins, a proven leader with a freaky skill set, may be just what the doctor ordered.