Veteran QB Mike Wright commits to play at Northwestern

ByPete Thamel ESPN logo
Thursday, May 9, 2024

Veteran college quarterback Mike Wright, who logged starts at Mississippi Stateand Vanderbilt, has committed to play next year at Northwestern, he told ESPN.

Wright, who enters his final year of eligibility, gives Northwestern an experienced quarterback who brings 14 career starts, 11 at Vanderbilt and three at MSU. He has appeared in 38 games in his career.

Wright has thrown 24 touchdown passes, has rushed for 10 more and has 2,520 career passing yards. He also has accounted for 1,229 rushing yards in his career.

He'll give second-year Northwestern head coach David Braun an intriguing option. Braun brought in a new offensive coordinator, Zach Lujan, who was the FCS Coordinator of the Year in 2023 at South Dakota State.

"For me, it was about Coach Braun and Coach Lujan," Wright told ESPN. "Those two guys were the main factors."

Wright will compete for Northwestern's starting job with redshirt sophomore Jack Lausch and sixth-year veteran Ryan Hilinski.

Last year's primary starter, transfer Ben Bryant, exhausted his eligibility, and backup Brendan Sullivan announced Wednesday that he has committed to Iowa.

Wright noted that his hosts on his visit were three of Northwestern's marquee receivers -- Calvin Johnson II, Bryce Kirtz and A.J. Henning -- and he said they made him excited to get them the ball.

He added that Lujan's system adapts to the talent, which also excites him.

"He's the type of offensive coordinator that adjusts around his players," Wright said. "Certain offensive coordinators have their system and it is what it is. He adjusts his offense to the players' skill set and strengths."

Northwestern went 8-5 last year and closed the season with four straight wins, including beating Utah in the Las Vegas Bowl.