The move comes in the wake of Kevin Sumlin’s firing and shouldn’t come as a total surprise.
Gunnell was close with the former UA coach, once committing to him at Texas A&M as well. Gunnell was also tight with UA offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone, who is highly unlikely to be retained by whoever the Wildcats tab as their new head coach.
Gunnell, the Texas high school all-time leader in passing yards and touchdowns, appeared in 12 career games at the UA, completing 66.5 percent of his passes for 1,864 yards, 15 touchdowns and three interceptions.
He split time with Khalil Tate as a true freshman in 2019 before becoming the full-time starter in 2020. A shoulder injury suffered at UCLA in third week of the season caused him to miss Arizona’s loss to Colorado.
Entering the transfer portal does not necessarily mean Gunnell is a sure thing to leave, but it does allow other schools to recruit him.
Arizona will do its best to convince him to stay, but if he cannot be swayed, it leaves Will Plummer, Rhett Rodriguez and Kevin Doyle as UA’s remaining scholarship quarterbacks.
The Wildcats also have a commitment from three-star QB prospect Clay Millen, but he is waiting until the spring to sign his National Letter of Intent.
Arizona also saw leading receiver Stanley Berryhill III enter the transfer portal, as well as Boobie Curry, Gunnell’s former high school teammate.