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Wisconsin QB Alex Hornibrook leaves football program, reportedly in transfer portal

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Spring practices just got more interesting.

NCAA Football: Illinois at Wisconsin Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The quarterback competition for the Wisconsin Badgers in 2019 just became more interesting.

Wisconsin announced on Wednesday afternoon that quarterback Alex Hornibrook has decided to leave the football program.

“Alex informed us of his decision to leave the team earlier today,” head coach Paul Chryst said in a released statement by Wisconsin. “He contributed to a lot of our recent success and we want to thank him for all he did for our program. We wish him the best of luck.”

According to reports earlier in the afternoon by AL.com’s Matt Zenitz, ESPN’s Tom Van Haaren and B5Q’s Owen Riese, Hornibrook has also entered into the NCAA’s transfer portal.

On Wednesday afternoon, Hornibrook also released a statement via Instagram that states he will graduate in May and intends to transfer to a new program. With the graduate transfer rule, he would have one more season of eligibility to play as he redshirted his first year at UW in 2015.

Hornibrook played in nine games—all starts—as a redshirt junior last season, completing 59.5 percent of his passes for 1,532 yards with 13 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He missed four full games and one half game (the latter against Rutgers) while dealing with symptoms from a head injury, and as the Wisconsin State Journal’s Jason Galloway noted in December, he also dealt with a “back issue” earlier in the season.

Hornibrook started 32 games in his Wisconsin career, going 26-6 along the way and winning 20 of 24 Big Ten contests in a starting capacity.

In January, B5Q confirmed with a UW official that Hornibrook was participating in winter conditioning with the team.

As UW’s release stated, Hornibrook ends his time in Madison as a quarterback who will see his name etched in Wisconsin’s all-time rankings for passing yards (fifth, 5,438), touchdown passes (tied for third, 47), and completion percentage (fourth, 60.5 percent).

Current quarterbacks on Wisconsin’s roster heading into spring camp, which UW confirmed will start on March 26, include rising junior Jack Coan, redshirt sophomore Danny Vanden Boom, redshirt freshman Chase Wolf, redshirt freshman Nate Carter, and mid-year enrollee Graham Mertz.