McNamara was the No. 253 prospect in the 2019 class, who originally committed to Notre Dame before flipping to Michigan. He didn't see any game action in his first year with Shea Patterson as the starter, but he played in four of 10 games in 2020 after replacing starter Joe Milton III.
McNamara threw for 425 yards and five touchdowns with no interceptions in a season that was interrupted by restrictions from COVID-19. He held on to the starting job for 2021 despite the addition of ESPN 300 quarterback J.J. McCarthy.
Last year, McNamara led the Wolverines to their first Big Ten title under Jim Harbaugh and a berth in the College Football Playoff. In 14 games, he threw for 2,576 yards and 15 touchdowns with six interceptions.
Prior to the 2022 season, Harbaugh announced there would be a quarterback competition between McNamara and McCarthy and it would lead into the season. McNamara started the first game against Colorado State, in which he had 136 yards and one touchdown, completing 50% of his passes.
McCarthy started the second game and won the competition as the starter. On top of being named the backup, McNamara suffered a leg injury in the second half of the third game of the season against UConn. His injury required surgery and he has not returned during the regular season.
McNamara, who is from Reno, Nevada, can potentially play at another school for two seasons. He redshirted as a freshman in 2019 and the NCAA has given any student-athlete from the 2020-21 school year an extra year of eligibility.