Virginia’s ongoing quarterback battle will continue into preseason practice, and by the time August rolls around, it will include one more contender.
East Carolina quarterback transfer Kurt Benkert told Wahoos247 over the weekend that he’ll enroll at UVa this summer after he completes his undergraduate degree. The 6-3, 225-pound signal-caller can play right away with two years of eligibility remaining and is expected to compete for the starting job with seniors Matt Johns and Connor Brewer.
A native of Cape Coral, Florida, Benkert arrived at ECU as part of the Pirates’ 2013 signing class. After redshirting his first season, he saw limited action in 2014, completing eight of his 10 passes for 58 yards with an interception. He was set to start in 2015 before suffering a torn ACL in late August.
Benkert’s decision was potentially influenced in part by ECU’s firing of head coach Ruffin McNeill in December. McNeill was later hired by Bronco Mendenhall to join Virginia’s staff as the team’s assistant head coach and defensive line coach.
Benkert is the second graduate transfer quarterback to pick UVa in as many years. Last offseason, Brewer joined the Cavaliers program after graduating from Arizona. As Johns’ top backup in 2015, he saw action in two games, completing four of eight passes for 34 yards with an interception.