At Monday afternoon's practice, Corbin Louks was playing safety and earning praises from safeties coach Morgan Scalley for his natural ability as a defender.

However, less than 18 hours later, Louks was no longer a Ute, deciding to transfer to the University of Nevada.

Louks was the favorite to be the starter for Utah this fall after backing up Brian Johnson last year but lost out in the three-way battle with freshman Jordan Wynn and junior-college transfer Terrance Cain.

He released this statement through the Utah athletic department Tuesday morning:

"I plan to transfer and I feel it is best for the team that I don't drag things out. The team needs to concentrate on the game with Utah State and I don't want to be a distraction. Transferring will give me the opportunity to play a position I know and love. I've really enjoyed my two years here at Utah and have made some lifelong friends. I want to thank the coaches, players and fans for all their support."

Louks didn't say why he was going to Nevada, but when he came out of San Ramon Valley High in Danville, Calif., in 2006, Nevada was one of four other schools he was considering, along with Utah State, Idaho and New Hampshire.

Whittingham said Louks "was instrumental to our success last year" and wished him the best in his decision.

"He's a quarterback at heart, and that's what he wants to play," said Whittingham. "By transferring to Nevada, he has the opportunity to be a full-time quarterback. That's what he felt was right for him, and we support him. We'll miss him and we wish him well."

Louks' fellow quarterbacks wished him the best also.

"If it's the best thing for him, more power to him," said Cain. "Good luck to him in the future. We can't look back, we've just got to keep going."

"I wish him the best of luck," said Wynn. "He did nothing but help me the whole time."

With Louks gone, freshman Griff Robles, who returned from an LDS mission last spring, becomes the No. 3 QB behind Wynn and Cain.

Two former quarterbacks, Chad Manis and DeVonte Christopher, have switched positions, to linebacker and receiver, respectively.