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Western Michigan appears to have its quarterback competition settled well before the season opener at Southern California.

Jon Wassink, a redshirt sophomore, looks to be in, and Tom Flacco, a junior, is out. Out, as in out of the program. Flacco will transfer and has been granted his full release with no restrictions, a Western Michigan spokesman confirmed Wednesday.

Flacco, 22, the younger brother of Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco, appeared in six games as a sophomore and seven games as a freshman, spelling starter Zach Terrell on rare occasions.

Terrell has graduated after a stellar career with the Broncos, and new head coach Tim Lester has spent much of his first months on the job working out his possible replacements.

Flacco, a Voorhees, N.J., native, hasn't decided on his destination, but he's expected to get a look from several schools back home on the East Coast. Per NCAA rules, he'll have to sit out one year if he transfers to another Division I school, as is expected.

A two-sport star in high school who was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies, Flacco threw for more than 4,500 yards and 40 touchdowns as a prep star. He rushed for 266 yards and two touchdowns and threw for 188 yards and a touchdown as a freshman at Western under then-coach P.J. Fleck, and had 74 rushing yards as a sophomore, including 55 in one game.

Wassink (6-foot-2, 205 pounds) attended South Christian High near Grand Rapids, was No. 33 on The Detroit News Blue Chip recruiting list and has three years of eligibility remaining.

Wassink threw for 2,178 yards and 34 touchdowns and rushed for 900 yards as a senior in high school, after throwing for 2,781 yards and 24 touchdowns and rushing for 1,074 yards and 22 scores as a junior. Wassink, 20, hasn't yet played in a college game.

Other quarterbacks on Western's roster include: redshirt sophomore Alex Mussat, redshirt freshman Brendan Tabone, and freshmen Reece Goddard and Chris Riddle.

tpaul@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @tonypaul1984

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