In first interview since dismissing sophomore Chad Kelly, Swinney told Fox Sports the fourth-year senior has "earned" the job. The Tigers' boss said he will name Stoudt the starter officially in a team meeting next Monday.
"It should be pretty obvious that he won the job,” Swinney said. “He's a great leader who is highly respected by his teammates. He never once complained. He was always ready when we needed him. He's earned it and he will be named the starter."
The Ohio native has played in 22 games over the last three seasons backing up Tajh Boyd. He owns a 72.3 career completion percentage with eight touchdown passes and one interception.
Swinney said in the interview that Stoudt runs better than his predecessor, but it's experience and decision-making that sets him apart.
"The thing I like about Cole is that he's very disciplined,” Swinney said. “He lives by the motto that, ‘You don't ever go broke by making a profit.’ If it's just a simple check down that the defense will give him, he will take it. He doesn’t force anything, he'll just keep moving the chains.”
Freshman five-star prospect Deshaun Watson is expected to compete for the job once he returns from a broken collarbone.