On Sunday night, New Hampshire quarterback Max Brosmer announced on social media that he was joining the Gophers football program as graduate transfer for the 2024 season. Brosmer became the first piece to be added to Minnesota's quarterback competition in the offseason, and upon first glance, he looks like the front-runner to earn the starting job.
Just what kind of quarterback are the Gophers getting through the transfer portal?
If you listen to Brosmer's high school coach, they'll have a smart, hard-working and driven signal-caller who's taken himself from a lightly recruited prep player to a highly regarded performer at the FCS level. On Monday, he was named one of three finalists for the Walter Payton Award, given annually to the most outstanding offensive player in FCS.
Also notable: Brosmer is a biomedical science major.
"Max is just a unique, unique individual,'' said Michael Perry, who coached Brosmer during his junior and senior seasons at Centennial High School in Roswell, Ga. "He's one of the smartest people I've ever been around, and an extremely hard worker. He was in honors classes in everything. He would meet with our strength coach every morning [to work out] at 6 a.m. and never miss a day. … I can't speak enough for him.''
Coming out of high school, Brosmer had only one scholarship offer from an FCS school and accepted it, joining New Hampshire in the fall of 2019. He won the starting job early in the season and helped the Wildcats finish 6-5 by passing for 1,967 yards and 12 touchdowns with 12 interceptions. New Hampshire played in only one game because of COVID-19 in the 2020 spring season, and his 2021 season ended with a training camp knee injury.
In 2022, Brosmer led the Wildcats to the second round of the FCS playoffs, passing for 3,154 yards and 27 TDs with eight interceptions. This year, New Hampshire finished 6-5 as he passed for an FCS-leading 3,464 yards and a second-best 29 touchdowns in the subdivision.
Brosmer was at his best this year in New Hampshire's only game against an FBS school this season. He passed for 493 yards and four touchdowns in a 45-42 loss at Central Michigan on Sept. 9.
"He loves the game. It's not a surprise to me that he's a finalist for the Walter Payton Award,'' Perry said. "And I'm not shocked at all that there were bigger schools trying to get him.''
Gophers coach P.J. Fleck and his staff identified Brosmer as someone who could immediately help Minnesota's offense in his one remaining year of eligibility in 2024. Brosmer, who declined to comment until he officially joins the Gophers on national signing day on Dec. 20, also had offers from Wake Forest, Western Kentucky, Western Michigan and Buffalo. He's rated the 12th-best quarterback in the transfer portal and the 27th-best transfer recruit overall by 247Sports.com.
At 6-2 and 221 pounds, Brosmer has the size and arm strength needed to excel, and Perry said that while the QB isn't a burner when it comes to his footspeed, he's fast enough to escape pressure. Brosmer's career stats include 10 rushing touchdowns, five in 2023.
Where Brosmer is especially quick, Perry said, is upstairs.
Brosmer has completed 63.4% of his passes the past two seasons. That accuracy, if it translates to the Big Ten level, would be just what the Gophers need. Athan Kaliakmanis, the 2023 starter who entered the transfer portal after Fleck opened the competition, completed only 53.1% of his passes. Minnesota ranked 126th of 133 FBS teams with an average of 153.2 passing yards per game.
"It's the mental side that separates him,'' Perry said of Brosmer. "He went from high school to New Hampshire and started right away. It's just a testament to how smart he is and how he can process information.''