There’s a tendency to freak out about transfers, especially when they come from Power 5 programs.

A lot of that has to do with it basically the closest thing college football has to free agency. Transfers are always magnified. It’s as if we’re willing to ignore the reason that they’re transferring — it’s almost always playing time — and assume that they’re destined for superstardom. It’s gotten a bit ridiculous.

But for Michigan fans who are celebrating the arrival of Shea Patterson, it’s not ridiculous at all.

Patterson, who announced on Monday that he’ll transfer from Ole Miss to Michigan, is worth the usually-overblown transfer hype. He left the Rebels less than two weeks after the school received a postseason ban for the 2018 season as a result of 15 level-1 NCAA violations. He could’ve returned to Ole Miss and made another bid at the single-season SEC passing record, which he was on pace to set before he suffered a season-ending knee injury.

Instead, Patterson will attend Michigan for his junior season. He admitted that he’s not sure if he’ll be eligible to play immediately. That’ll likely get sorted out in the coming weeks.

Either way, one can’t help but think that this is as big of an offseason splash as Harbaugh has made yet.

For the folks who didn’t spend much time watching Patterson play — he has a full season worth of starts vs. SEC defenses over his first 2 years — here’s a brief scouting report on the junior-to-be.

The comparison for him is Johnny Manziel. Let me rephrase that. The on-field comparison* for Patterson is Manziel. Why?

Patterson is mobile in ways that few quarterbacks are. He’s mobile in a Manziel-like sense where he can make big-time throws without setting his feet. He keeps his eyes downfield and doesn’t let plays die. For his size (I question if he’s really the 6-2 he’s listed at), he has quite the arm and is capable of making virtually every throw on the field.

Patterson did a whole lot more than make an incredible throw back in 2016. His sophomore numbers were impressive (17 TDs, 8.69 yards per attempt, 64 percent passing, 2,259 passing yards in seven games), but the numbers don’t really do his game justice. The rushing numbers certainly don’t show how athletic he is, either.

There were plenty of people who believed that he could be the SEC’s best quarterback if he returned to Ole Miss for his junior season. And while Patterson wasn’t perfect — he still needs to adjust to pressure better — he still threw for 346 passing yards in five of his seven games in 2017 (he failed to reach that mark vs. Alabama and LSU). The notion that he’ll be anything but Michigan’s starter when eligible is a bit naive.

And that’s not meant as a slight to Brandon Peters, who did everything he was asked to do in limited snaps as a redshirt freshman. But turn on the film and watch the degree of difficulty between the throws Peters made and the throws Patterson made. It’s not close. It won’t take a long training camp to make that determination, despite what Harbaugh will likely say about his “quarterback battle.”

RELATED: Shea Patterson announces he’ll transfer to Michigan

Patterson could’ve found a home at virtually any program in the country. His stock was that high after the year he had. Of course Harbaugh wanted Patterson, who threw for more passing yards in seven games than Michigan did in its entire 12-game season.

Harbaugh’s best quarterback at Michigan so far was Jake Rudock, a former transfer himself. Rudock, of course, couldn’t win the job at Iowa. Still, he was better than both Wilton Speight and John O’Korn. All three of those quarterbacks had something in common, though. They couldn’t beat Ohio State.

O’Korn was the latest Wolverines quarterback who couldn’t get it done against the hated Buckeyes. In that game, Michigan clearly looked like a team that was a quarterback away from beating Ohio State.

Michigan, which had a top-three defense the last two years, has been a quarterback away from being an elite program.

Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

There was and still is hope that Peters could be the answer to Michigan’s quarterback woes. He showed a Rudock-like ability to make all the intermediate throws and make smart decisions. If Peters continues to build confidence, nothing suggests he can’t become better than his predecessors.

But it’s about time Harbaugh got to work with a game-changer. That’s what Patterson is.

Michigan fans shouldn’t gauge the reaction of Ole Miss fans, many of whom believed that Jordan Ta’amu was just as capable of running Matt Luke’s spread offense as Patterson was. Given what Ta’amu did after Patterson went down, that might be true.

Still, that won’t change what Patterson can do at Michigan. He’ll get to work with a group of wideouts that was forced to develop with inconsistent play at quarterback. They won’t be as established as the group of receivers at Ole Miss, but the cupboard certainly isn’t bare.

Patterson will get to operate knowing that his defense can make stops on a consistent basis. He never had that at Ole Miss, where he was forced to win shootouts on a weekly basis.

Most importantly, he’ll get Harbaugh. How quickly we forget that Harbaugh was the guy who helped turn Andrew Luck into a once-in-a-generation prospect. The job that Harbaugh did to maximize the potential of guys like Rudock and Colin Kaepernick is also overlooked by his doubters.

But there’s a reason why Michigan made so much sense when Patterson became available. The Wolverines cannot and will not reach new heights without an upgrade at the most important position, and there were few coaches who could teach Patterson about becoming an NFL quarterback like Harbaugh.

It was a major victory for Harbaugh, who always makes it a priority to win the offseason. Monday’s news will be more impactful than any tweet, subtweet, satellite camp or high dive that he could take part in.

Michigan has a quarterback, and now, it has no more excuses.