BOISE — Backup quarterback Nick Patti has been granted permission to discuss a transfer to Central Florida and is not expected to return to the Boise State football program, a Boise State spokesman said Tuesday night.
Patti has been granted a scholarship release for UCF only at this point. His dad, Ed Patti, made the request, the spokesman said.
Ed Patti told the Orlando Sentinel on Tuesday that his son received a full scholarship release, which would allow him to transfer anywhere, but that is not the case, according to Boise State.
Patti is from Orlando, Fla., which is home to UCF.
Patti likely will have to sit out the 2014 season at a new school. He will be a redshirt sophomore and likely would have backed up Grant Hedrick with the Broncos.
Patti is the second quarterback to transfer out of the program in the past year. Jimmy Laughrea, who will be a junior this fall, transferred to UC Davis and played last season.
Patti was suspended from one practice at the Hawaii Bowl last month and then reinstated to the team. Senior quarterback Joe Southwick was suspended from the same practice and sent home for a violation of team rules.
Patti told the Idaho Statesman two years ago that coach Chris Petersen, who left last month for Washington, was a key reason he committed to Boise State. Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Brent Pease left the program just as Patti was arriving.
A lot of the reason Im going there is for coach Petersen, a lot more than the offensive coordinator, Patti said then.
Patti was the 8A Florida Player of the Year after his senior season at Dr. Phillips High in Orlando. He was the Broncos Offensive Scout Player of the Year in 2012 and the third-string quarterback in 2013, when he was 8-for-11 passing for 63 yards and had 19 rushing yards.
His departure leaves the Broncos extremely shorthanded at quarterback. Hedrick, a senior, returns after playing half of last season as the primary quarterback. But the only other quarterbacks are redshirt freshman Ryan Finley, who missed most of the fall and may miss some of the spring with a shoulder injury, and redshirt freshman walk-on Richard Hoppe.
Boise State also does not have a quarterback commit in the 2014 recruiting class. Jalen Greene, who was going to enroll next week, changed his commitment to Washington and then enrolled at USC after Petersen left.
Patti is the third player to leave the program since Petersen went to Washington. The others were tailback Aaron Baltazar, who is transferring, and defensive end Demarcus Lawrence, who is going to the NFL.
Boise State added 6-foot-2, 240-pound defensive tackle Dereck Boles of Lakeland (Fla.) High to its recruiting class Tuesday. The Broncos gave him his first Football Bowl Subdivision scholarship offer.
Its just a great opportunity for me to play college ball, he said.
Chadd Cripe: 377-6398, Twitter: @IDS_BroncoBeat