WKU Athletics announced Sunday that graduate transfer quarterback Tyrrell Pigrome has signed with WKU Football. Pigrome – a Birmingham, Alabama, native – was previously with the University of Maryland, where he accumulated 2,407 total yards of offense in 34 games, seven of those being starts.
With the addition of Pigrome, WKU offensive coordinator Bryan Ellis adds more talent, depth and competition to a quarterback room that includes returning Hilltoppers Davis Shanley and Kevaris Thomas, as well as incoming true freshmen Darius Ocean and Grady Robison.
As a freshman for the Terrapins in 2016, Pigrome appeared in 11 games – including a start versus Minnesota – totaling 322 yards passing and two touchdowns. In addition, he ranked third on the team with 254 yards rushing and four scores on the ground.
The highlight of his freshman season was a 24-yard, game-winning touchdown rush in a 30-24, double-overtime victory at UCF on his first play after coming in as an injury replacement.
Pigrome earned the starting quarterback job going into his sophomore season of 2017 but was sidelined by a season-ending injury in the second half of a 51-41 victory at No. 23 Texas. He had completed 9-of-12 passes for two touchdowns while rushing 11 times for 64 yards and one score.
Pigrome appeared in 11 games as a redshirt sophomore in 2018, playing the majority of the final three contests and starting the last two. In those three games – at Indiana, vs. No. 9 Ohio State, and at No. 15 Penn State – he completed 30-of-49 passes for 512 yards, with two touchdowns and zero interceptions.
Against the Buckeyes, Pigrome helped lead an offense that scored 51 points in a 52-51 overtime loss against the eventual Big Ten Conference and Rose Bowl champions, who finished with a 13-1 record.
As a redshirt junior in 2019, Pigrome once again appeared in 11 games, making three straight starts in the middle of the season. He became the first Maryland quarterback to start a game in four different seasons since Vic Turyn in 1945-48.
Overall, Pigrome completed 69-of-118 passes for 719 yards and three touchdowns. In a loss at Purdue, he showed his versatility with 218 pass yards and 13 rushes for 107 yards on the ground with one score.
Pigrome was the 2015 Gatorade Alabama Player of the Year and two-time Alabama Mr. Football runner-up. He helped lead Clay-Chalkville High School to a pair of state championship games under head coach Jerry Hood, winning the title as a junior.
He was named the Alabama 6A Offensive Player of the Year and appeared in the Alabama/Mississippi All-Star Game. As a senior, Pigrome accounted for 62 total touchdowns, passing for 44 and running for 18. In the previous season, he passed for 31 touchdowns and ran for 18 touchdowns as a junior.
The Hilltoppers capped their 2019 campaign with a 23-20 thriller over Western Michigan in the SERVPRO First Responder Bowl to improve to 9-4, tripling the team's win total from 2018 (3-9) while matching the number of victories from the previous two years combined (9-16). WKU's six-win improvement from 2018 to 2019 tied for the third-best in FBS, behind only Navy (eight) and Central Michigan (seven).
Second-year head coach Tyson Helton and the 2020 Hilltoppers will face a wire-to-wire grind, as nine of the team's 11 FBS opponents competed in a bowl game in 2019. WKU is expected to return 16 of its 22 offensive and defensive starters, along with two of the Hilltoppers' three specialists.