Nov 4, 2023; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack quarterback MJ Morris (7) throws a pass during the first half against the Miami Hurricanes at Carter-Finley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

NC State QB MJ Morris entering transfer portal

Quarterback MJ Morris became the latest NC State player to announce plans to enter the transfer portal Thursday.

The 19th-ranked Wolfpack (9-3, 6-2 ACC) have already had 12 players enter or announce plans to enter the portal, including starting defensive tackle C.J. Clark.

Morris began the year as the backup to Brennan Armstrong and planned to redshirt. However, coach Dave Doeren called his number due to Armstrong’s struggles.

Morris told the coaching staff he would give up his redshirt season and started the next four games. But he then changed his mind and opted out to preserve his redshirt, giving him three years of remaining eligibility.

In 2022, Morris filled in as a true freshman after Devin Leary suffered a season-ending injury in November.

In nine games over two seasons, Morris completed 57.8 percent of his passes for 1,367 yards with 14 touchdowns and six interceptions.

–Field Level Media

Oct 28, 2023; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack quarterback MJ Morris (7) throws a pass during the first half against the Clemson Tigers at Carter-Finley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: NC State QB MJ Morris to redshirt remainder of season

North Carolina State starting quarterback MJ Morris has decided to take off the rest of the season to preserve his eligibility to redshirt, multiple outlets reported Tuesday.

His father, Eddie Morris, seemed to confirm the reports, telling television station WRAL in Raleigh, N.C., that he won’t be looking to transfer.

“No one said he is leaving the program,” Eddie Morris told WRAL. “Nobody said he is leaving the program. If he would have left the program, he would have left in January and he would have left in May. He had plenty of options.”

MJ Morris, a sophomore, has played in four games — all starts — since he replaced Virginia transfer Brennan Armstrong at quarterback in the sixth game of the season. Four is the maximum number of games a player can appear in before losing the redshirt.

Armstrong reportedly is taking reps with the first team in practice and is poised to return to the starting role.

Head coach Dave Doeren discussed his positive impressions of Morris with the media on Monday after he led the Wolfpack to a 20-6 win over Miami on Saturday.

“He’s very confident. He’s comfortable. He throws a catchable ball. He’s tough,” Doeren said. “The game continues to slow down for him. There’s little things within routes where you see something in a coverage and maybe you can help yourself with your eyes on things like that.

“It is a game that requires so much. The more you play it, the better you get. He’s 3-1 as a starter. He’s really worked hard. I know he’ll continue to grow and get better.”

North Carolina State (6-3, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) faces conference rival Wake Forest on the road on Saturday.

Under Morris, the Wolfpack are averaging 179.75 passing yards per game. He is 63-of-113 passing (55.75 percent) for 719 yards with seven touchdowns and five interceptions.

In eight games (five starts), Armstrong is 94-of-160 passing for 971 yards with five touchdowns and six interceptions. He is averaging 121.38 yards per game.

Armstrong, however, is the leading rusher for NC State. He has gained 337 yards and scored three TDs.

NC State now has just two scholarship quarterbacks available for the rest of the season — Armstrong and Lex Thomas, a freshman who has yet to play for the Wolfpack.

–Field Level Media

Nov 12, 2022; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA;North Carolina State Wolfpack quarterback MJ Morris (16) scrambles during the first half against the Boston College Eagles at Carter-Finley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

NC State benching QB Brennan Armstrong, to start MJ Morris

NC State will start sophomore quarterback MJ Morris in place of graduate transfer Brennan Armstrong this Saturday against Marshall, coach Dave Doeren announced Monday.

Morris was rated a four-star high school prospect by Rivals and a three-star by 247Sports in the Class of 2022.

He saw the field as a true freshman when starter Devin Leary went down with injury. He helped the Wolfpack beat Virginia Tech and Wake Forest before being injured the next week against Boston College.

Morris finished 2022 with 648 yards, seven touchdowns, one interception and one rushing touchdown while completing 60.5 percent of his passes.

Armstrong appeared in parts of five seasons for Virginia (2018-22) and threw for 4,449 yards and 31 touchdowns during the 2021 campaign. After a lackluster 2022, he transferred to NC State to use his remaining eligibility, but has struggled through five games.

Armstrong has thrown for 971 yards, five touchdowns and six interceptions with a 58.8 completion percentage. NC State has gone 3-2 (1-1 ACC) and ranks 94th in FBS in passing yards per game (214.8) and tied for 88th in scoring offense (25.4 ppg).

–Field Level Media