Pitt quarterback Joey Yellen has been granted immediate eligibility by the NCAA following his transfer from Arizona State, the program announced on Friday.
Yellen, a redshirt freshman, will have four seasons of eligibility with the Panthers beginning in 2020. Players that have not yet graduated from their previous school that are transferring to another Division I institution require a waiver or must sit out a season in residence. Because Yellen already used a redshirt year in 2019, sitting out a year would have caused him to lose a season of eligibility.
“I’m very happy to have received this news from the NCAA, and I appreciate them making this decision on my situation,” Yellen said in a team press release. “I am excited to be able to be available for my team this season and look forward to helping out any way I can.”
Yellen transferred to Pitt after one season at Arizona State. He played in one game for the Sun Devils, completing 28 of 44 passes for 292 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions in a loss to USC.
Originally a four-star prospect out of Mission Viejo, California,Yellen was passed by fellow freshman Jayden Daniels for the starting job at Arizona State. He made the decision to transfer in December and quickly committed to Pitt on Jan. 2.
Yellen enrolled early at Pitt was part of the team’s spring practices before they were prematurely halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yellen is in competition to be the primary backup to incumbent starter Kenny Pickett, who is entering his third full season as Pitt’s starting quarterback in 2020. Other contenders for that job include 2019 backup Nick Patti, who directed Pitt to a win over Delaware while filling in for Pickett in 2019, and four-star 2019 prospect Davis Beville, who redshirted as a true freshman last season.
“This is outstanding news for Joey and our entire program,” Pitt head coach Pat Narduzzi said in a press release. “He’s been such a great addition, on and off the field, for us. We’re thrilled for him and his family. We are all very grateful for our compliance staff’s excellent work throughout this process.”
Pitt was scheduled to return to practice on Friday for the Panthers’ fourth practice session of training camp after cancelling Thursday’s workouts due to several players developing symptoms consistent with COVID-19.