Former Oklahoma State starting quarterback Spencer Sanders will transfer to Ole Miss, the senior announced on Twitter. By committing to the Rebels under coach Lane Kiffin, Sanders joins a loaded quarterback room that includes incumbent starter Jaxson Dart and former four-star prospect Walker Howard, who just transferred from LSU this week. Sanders, who entered the transfer portal on December 5 after four years as the Cowboys' signal-caller, also considered Auburn according to ESPN.
"I'm going to come in and work my tail off either way, whether the room is packed or not," Sanders told 247Sports. "That's just my mindset. I've always had a mindset of competing, driving, striving for better. I've never shied away from competition. I'm not going to start now."
Sanders threw for 9.553 yards, 67 touchdowns and 40 interceptions in 43 games for Oklahoma State, adding 1,956 yards and 18 touchdowns on the ground. He was a first-team All-Big 12 selection in 2021 after throwing for 2,839 yards, rushing for 668 yards and accounting for 26 touchdowns (20 passing).
His career accomplishments will be put to the test in Oxford. Dart is a rising junior who threw for 2,974 yards, rushed for 614 yards and tallied 21 total touchdowns in his first year as Ole Miss' starter. Howard, a redshirt freshman with four years of eligibility remaining, saw action in two games for the Tigers this past season, including the 63-7 Citrus Bowl victory over Purdue in which he completed 2 of 4 passes for 7 yards in mop-up duty.
However, Dart's 11 interceptions were concerning. Did that inconsistency in the passing game lead to Kiffin diving head first into the transfer quarterback market? It's possible. Whatever spurned the spree, it's fair to say that Kiffin is creating the "Hunger Games" for high-profile college quarterbacks. Howard still has plenty of eligibility left, so sitting behind Dart and Sanders and learning the system in preparation to one day earning the starting job isn't the worst idea in the world. However, Dart and Sanders have plenty of experience as starting quarterbacks, and there is only one football to go around.
"I have a lot of self-confidence," Sanders said. "I'm a big believer in myself. My money is on me every time. So, I wasn't too worried about what the quarterback room looks like. I've got pretty good experience. I've been in the game for four years. I feel like I've got a little bit of an edge."