Connect with us

NFL Combine

Notre Dame’s Jack Coan Ready for Next Transition to NFL



Jack Coan

INDIANAPOLIS —Jack Coan already felt like making the move from Wisconsin to Notre Dame was the right move for his college career. As he prepares for the NFL Combine, the switch might be paying off for him again.

While most players are preparing for a new experience as they transition to their new teams, Coan has been down a similar road once before. He left Madison for South Bend for a chance to start for the Fighting Irish, and the experience of starting over with a new group of teammates and a new city could serve him well once he learns his NFL destination.

“I think I’ve had a practice run as far as what it’s going to be like in going from college to the NFL in my transfer from Wisconsin to Notre Dame,” Coan said. “Basically, leaving one place and going to another, having to learn a whole new system and build relationships with guys, I think has really prepared me and improved my knowledge of the game as well.”

The logic is easy to see when listening to Coan describe his transition from Wisconsin to Notre Dame. After his junior season, the Badgers brought in Graham Mertz and made him the starter, leading to a switch that sounds a lot like the experience of entering the NFL draft.

“(Leaving Wisconsin) was extremely difficult,” he said. “You build so many great relationships there and you know the program inside and out, and you’re one of the main guys there. So everyone knows you and you know them, but you have to leave that all behind, start all over and prove yourself again.

“But overall, I think everything happens for a reason. I was really thankful for my experience, and I think it worked out for the best.”

The stats certainly back that statement. As a senior at Notre Dame, Coan posted career highs in yards and touchdowns while leading the Fighting Irish to a Fiesta Bowl appearance. In his final collegiate experience, Notre Dame trusted him enough to give him 68 passing attempts against Oklahoma State, leading him to set a new Irish record for passing yards in a bowl game in the losing effort.

“I’m an extremely hard worker,” Coan said. “I’m a guy that’s going to come in and work as hard as anyone, and I say that confidently. I want to be a great teammate, first and foremost.

“I think what separates me is probably my intelligence, and that comes from a lot of my hard work and preparation. At the next level, there’s a lot of stuff that goes into a playbook as far as checks, kills and alerts. The guys that work hard and truly process that are the ones that are successful and sustain their careers, and I think I can do that.”

Should the Steelers choose to pursue Coan — the quarterback said he thought he had met with Pittsburgh, but couldn’t remember for sure after the whirlwind of the Combine — it likely wouldn’t take much draft capital to land him. Most mock drafts currently have Coan slotted as a Day 3 draft pick, but that doesn’t bother him in the slightest. In fact, he takes inspiration from a late-round pick who parlayed his selection into a Hall of Fame career.

“I look at Tom Brady,” he said. “Everyone knows his story and how crazy it was; nobody knew he was going to be the best quarterback of all time. I’m not saying that’s what I’m going to be, but that’s a guy I always try to emulate and have as a role model.”

Click for more coverage from Alan Saunders, Nick Farabaugh and Dan Angell, live from Indianapolis at the 2022 NFL Combine.

Steelers Now in your Inbox

Sign up and get all of our posts sent directly to your inbox!

Thank you!