The Jacksonville, Florida product has found a new home within the SEC. Earlier today Gatewood announced Thursday night via Twitter that he would be transferring to the University of Kentucky. This puts a bow on one of Kentucky’s best recruiting classes ever, adding the former 4-star prospect to an already loaded group of recruits.
Gatewood was the nation’s #1 athlete and a Top 50 prospect in the class of 2018. He redshirted his true freshman year, and would lose out on the starting job this offseason vs true freshman Bo Nix. Though being the back up, Auburn did use him this season in certain offensive schemes. Joey was 5-7 passing the ball, for 54 yards and two touchdowns while rushing 29 times for 138 yards and three touchdowns.
The former Tiger was frustrated with his role within the offense, especially once they started having major issues with Bo Nix under center. Late in October Gatewood would announce his intent to enter the transfer portal. As a high school recruit he was looking at 30+ scholarship offers including ones from Clemson, Florida, and Florida State. Just a week after putting his name in the transfer portal, the dual threat quarterback took his only official visit to Lexington Kentucky, and took another during their Louisville beat down last week.
“He’s just at a point now where he wants to be a starting quarterback and feels like he needs to start looking for schools now so that he can find the right spot, and I respect that,” clarified Auburn coach Gus Malzahn.
Kentucky will be getting Terry Wilson and Sawyer Smith back next season, but should be out the door by 2020. With that being said, Gatewood will have to sit out next season due to NCAA transfer rules. Making the timeline o’so perfect for Big Blue Nation, and fixing a big issue for the Wildcat offense this year. Once he is eligible to return for the Wildcats in 2021, Gatewood will have 2 years remaining of NCAA eligibility.