Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa will declare for the 2024 NFL Draft, 247Sports reports. The Big Ten's all-time leading passer, Tagovailoa previously entered the transfer portal, but his waiver for a sixth year of eligibility was denied by the NCAA, ESPN reports. According to ESPN, the waiver was denied despite a strong written plea from former Alabama coach Nick Saban. 

Tagovailoa originally signed with Alabama in 2019. He played in five games with the Crimson Tide before transferring to Maryland in 2020, where he immediately emerged as the Terrapins' starter. Since he was granted an extra year of eligibility due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Tagovailoa was able to return for his fifth year of college football and fourth season of eligibility in 2023. 

Over his four years with the Terps, Tagovailoa started in 41 games and completed 955 passes for 11,256 yards and 76 touchdowns -- all three of which are Maryland program records. He also holds Maryland's record for career completion percentage (67.1%) and in 2021 set single-season records with 328 completions for 3,860 yards passing and 26 total touchdowns. 

He had at least 3,000 yards passing in each of the last three seasons. He also never had a losing record in a full season as a starter, leading the Terrapins to three-straight bowl wins to close out his career. 

Impact on Maryland

Given that he's out of eligibility, Tagovailoa's departure doesn't come as a surprise. In fact, declaring for the draft is a mere formality and Maryland has been planning for life without Tagovailoa for a while now. The Terrapins received a commitment from three-star NC State transfer MJ Morris in December, well before Tagovailoa even confirmed his plans to initially enter the transfer portal. 

Morris, who has three seasons of eligibility remaining, played in four games with three starts last season and finished with 719 yards passing and seven touchdowns to five interceptions. But he won't be handed the starting job. 

He'll compete with veteran backup Billy Edwards and redshirt freshman Cameron Edge. Tagovailoa did not play in Maryland's Music City Bowl win against Auburn, which allowed Edwards to get his first start of the season. He was named MVP after throwing for 126 yards and a touchdown and rushing for another score. 

Edge came into the game later and completed four passes for 82 yards and his first career touchdown. Maryland's staff seems to be high on the former three-star prospect and he'll get a fair shake as spring and fall practices play out.