Just like that, Tate Forcier is a Spartan.

@tforcier4: “(I’m) a Spartan now. Excited to report to camp August 4th.”

Not those Spartans, of course. Not the Michigan State squad against which Forcier pioneered a last-minute comeback before falling in overtime in the 2009 in-state rivalry matchup.

No, Forcier is now a San Jose State Spartan.

But his announcement couldn’t have been more frightening for Michigan fans.

“(I’m) a Spartan now,” Forcier tweeted Tuesday evening. “Excited to report to camp August 4th.”

Only later did he clarify that he was indeed headed to San Jose, Calif., not East Lansing.

Forcier left the Michigan football team following the 2010 season. He failed to qualify academically for the Gator Bowl and was sent home from Jacksonville, Fla. prior to the Wolverines’ 52-14 drubbing at the hands of Mississippi State.

“I hate acting like I’m dodging questions,” Brandon said regarding Forcier’s status in early January. “But there are certain limitations as to what I can talk about relative to any student’s academic status with the university.”

Forcier left the Wolverines after accumulating 2,647 passing yards, 17 touchdowns and 14 interceptions.

With that, the high-profile quarterback saw his recruiting process open right back up.

He signed a letter of intent for Miami, but never enrolled in classes at the Miami campus. An April 22 report from the Grand Rapids police claimed that Forcier was found hanging out of a third-floor bedroom window. The report did not specify whether it was a suicide attempt, but the Forcier family then made it clear that they hoped to see Tate play closer to their San Diego home.

Forcier was linked with schools across the board, from Southern California to Auburn to Montana and Hawaii. Just last week, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser announced that Forcier would not meet their academic standards. So another door was closed.

But the whirlwind process is now over. Finally.

Forcier reported he has completed online classes and is prepared to join the team in early August. He has to sit out the 2011 season before joining the Spartans in 2012.

“I can’t wait to get there,” Forcier told the San Jose Mercury News. “They have a lot of good players. They were just young last year and didn’t have a lot of experience. When it’s my turn to play, a lot of those guys will have three years of experience under their belts. I’m looking forward to my future at San Jose State.”

“It felt right. I loved the coaches and felt comfortable with them. I really believe I can help that team and I’m going to do everything I possibly can to help them.”

Forcier’s career as a Wolverine will be remembered in Michigan lore as some of the highest heights and lowest lows for any highly-touted Michigan prospect.

Entering as a true freshman, with an advantage over backup freshman quarterback Denard Robinson because of his early enrollment into Michigan, Forcier led the Wolverines — coming off a 3-9 season — to a blistering 4-0 start. The early-season success was highlighted by last-second victories over Notre Dame and Indiana.

He electrified the Michigan football nation — but then he and the Wolverines hit a brick wall. After a 5-7 freshman season, Forcier’s relationship to his teammates proved strained because of his lack of work in summer training.

“Denard has been out there through the thick and thin and been out there all the time regardless if he’s hurting,” then-junior cornerback Troy Woolfolk said at Big Ten Media Days. “And Tate, he tries to come out, but he’s not as consistent as Denard is. And that’s allowed Denard to jump a little bit ahead of Tate and I think that Tate’s going to have to do a lot of work to catch back up to Denard in camp this year.”

Although then-Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez refused to name a starter, when Connecticut stepped onto the Michigan Stadium turf, it was Robinson who was handed the ball. And he ran all over them — and most everyone else — in a 30-10 victory.

When Robinson went down nursing an injured hip, Rodriguez inserted true freshman Devin Gardner at quarterback. Forcier was caught on the sideline seated atop the Michigan bench with a towel covering his bowed head. It was the beginning of the end.

“All you need to know is I’m out,” Forcier said, rushing to leave the field after the game.

Eleven months later, it’s official. Tate Forcier is gone. He is a Spartan.

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