AUBURN, Ala. — Jarrett Stidham signed, sealed and delivered his national letter of intent to the Auburn football program weeks ago. But the former Baylor quarterback still grabbed some of the spotlight on the Plains on National Signing Day.
Stidham, arguably Auburn’s biggest signee in the 2017 recruiting class, had his first official interview since joining the Tigers in December on Wednesday.
“It feels good to finally get back into the system of being with a team,” Stidham said on the program’s in-house National Signing Day show. “I love it here. I’m glad to be here with these guys and my other teammates. I’m ready to go, ready to compete.”
Stidham will enter spring practice, which starts at the end of February, as the early favorite to win Auburn’s starting quarterback job. He’ll compete with former starter Sean White, John Franklin III, Woody Barrett and Malik Willis.
The former 5-star high school recruit started three games as a true freshman at Baylor in 2015 before deciding to leave the program last year.
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Auburn signed the No. 1 JUCO recruit in December over two SEC rivals — both of which had a huge need for an instant-impact quarterback.
“Once I decided to transfer from Baylor, I had my eyes on a few different schools,” Stidham said. “Auburn was kind of the main one that came at me the hardest, along with Texas A&M and Florida. I just felt at home here. I just rolled with it, and, sure enough, it’s been the right decision.”
Stidham is eligible immediately at Auburn after sitting out the entire 2016 season. He didn’t play a snap of JUCO ball in order to preserve his eligibility.
The former Baylor quarterback practiced at a local high school while he took junior-college courses. When he arrived at Auburn in December for a few Sugar Bowl practices, it was his first action at a college level in several months.
“It was tough,” Stidham said. “Every Saturday, I’m sitting there watching game after game and thinking, ‘Man, I should really be playing right now.’ It was tough to be out of the game, but it’s God’s plan. I’m thankful that I did it, and I’m really itching to get back out there.”