Sources: Ken Seals expected to start at quarterback Week One

Seals, a true freshman, is expected to start at quarterback in Week One against Texas A&M, multiple sources told The Hustler.

Ken+Seals+practicing+for+Vanderbilt.+%28Vanderbilt+Athletics%29

Ken Seals practicing for Vanderbilt. (Vanderbilt Athletics)

Simon Gibbs, Sports Editor

The Vanderbilt Commodores have named Ken Seals the starting quarterback for Week One’s contest at Texas A&M, multiple sources told The Hustler.

Seals, a true freshman from Weatherford, Texas, was competing with freshman Mike Wright and junior college transfers Danny Clark and Jeremy Moussa for the starting role. The coaching staff announced the decision internally after the Commodores’ last intrasquad scrimmage, multiple sources confirmed.

Vanderbilt has not started a true freshman at quarterback since 2015, when Kyle Shurmur started five games. However, Shurmur did not start the season opener; a much more infrequent feat in the SEC, there have only been two true freshman quarterbacks to start season openers since freshman eligibility was restored in 1972 (Brent Schaeffer, Tennessee, 2004 and Bo Nix, Auburn, 2019). 

In two seasons as starting quarterback for Weatherford High School, Seals threw for 5,714 passing yards and 53 passing touchdowns. According to the Star Telegram, he is believed to hold multiple school records, including most career touchdown passes, most touchdown passes in a single season (33 in 2019), total touchdowns (65, including 12 rushing touchdowns) and total yards (6,426, including over 700 rushing yards). Seals propelled the Weatherford Kangaroos, who went 0-10 the season before he took the helm, to back-to-back playoff appearances

Seals was labeled a three-star recruit by Rivals, who listed him as the 18th-best quarterback in his class, and by 247 Sports, who listed him as the 21st-best pro-style quarterback in his class. He committed to Vanderbilt on April 3, 2019 as a junior in high school.

“His overall feel for what’s going on in the offense, where all the moving parts are going, is really pretty good for his age and his experience level,” offensive coordinator Todd Fitch said in a press conference on Sept. 8. “He’s a pretty accurate thrower. When you chart him, he’s throwing the ball pretty accurately.”

Vanderbilt will travel to College Station, Texas this weekend and will open its season against the tenth-ranked Texas A&M Aggies.