In April 2021, the NCAA granted athletes a one-time waiver to transfer without penalty. We look at which top athletes are in the transfer portal and what effect they will have on their new team.
A Quarterback’s Favorite Territory
Over the last few years, we have gotten a chance to see who and what positions would transfer to different schools with the opportunity to play immediately. High-profile quarterbacks are transferred at a higher volume. Last year, Caleb Williams transferred to USC, eventually winning the Heisman. Quinn Ewers transferred to Texas, Jaxson Dart to Ole Miss, and Spencer Rattler to South Carolina. This is just naming a few athletes who chose to start somewhere fresh.
Many quarterbacks have already put their names in this year; some have even picked where they will attend next fall. The top quarterback in the transfer portal is Devin Leary from North Carolina State; he has decided to take his talents to Kentucky in the fall and take on SEC talent. In 2021, Leary was one of five finalists for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm award, which goes to the nation’s best quarterback. He was a preseason Heisman candidate because of his 2021 performance. Unfortunately, his season ended abruptly in Week Six after tearing his pectoral muscle in a game against Florida State.
Another quarterback that hit the transfer portal is Shedeur Sanders. In my article on Colorado hiring Deion Sanders, I clarified that Shedeur Sanders would be following his dad to Colorado, and Coach Prime confirmed that in his press conference. Shedeur Sanders had a terrific year at Jackson State; he threw for 3,732 yards, 40 touchdowns, and six interceptions with a 70.6 completion percentage. This young man will work wonders at Colorado; out of high school, he was rated the 61st overall player in the class of 2021. He had offers from many power five schools, Alabama, Georgia, Michigan, LSU, Oregon, Penn State, Tennessee, Florida, Louisville, and FAU, to name a few.
Clemson quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei has announced he will transfer from the school after losing his job to his backup, Cade Klubnik. There have been a few crystal ball picks, but a frontrunner has emerged. Oregon was presumed to be the new home for the former Clemson quarterback. However, Bo Nix announced he was returning to the program, and a new crystal ball was put in by Jackson Moore, a widely known West Coast expert, for DJ Uiagalelei to go to the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors.
The last quarterback I want to touch on is another guy who has not made his decision yet but will be very effective wherever he goes. His name is Spencer Sanders; despite only playing ten games last year for Oklahoma State, he posted 2,642 yards, 17 touchdowns, and interceptions. Unfortunately, Spencer was having a tough year with his lingering shoulder injury. For his career, he has posted a 136.2 passer rating; for comparison, Heisman Finalist Max Duggan has posted a 142.6 passer rating throughout his career. Potential landing spots for him are Notre Dame, Florida, and Penn State.
Notable Big Time Transfers
We will finish up with a couple of big-time names worth mentioning in the transfer portal. The first name is gigantic; he is considered the number one transfer in the portal right now: Travis Hunter. Travis Hunter was the number two overall recruit in the 2022 class. He can play cornerback and wide receiver and is electric in both positions. He announced on Wednesday, December 21st, that he would transfer to Colorado and join his coach Deion Sanders.
Ernest Hausmann is considered the second-best transfer in the portal. He was a linebacker for Nebraska this past season, and on December 12th, he committed to the Michigan Wolverines. Hausmann recorded ten tackles as a true freshman against the Wolverines last year. He will be a massive pickup for the Michigan defense next year.
Denver Harris is the next big name on the transfer portal and is ranked 3rd. He was a cornerback for Texas A&M this past year; he was a 5-star recruit out of high school and ranked 23rd in the nation. Possible destinations include LSU and Colorado as of now. Denver only appeared in five games and was suspended indefinitely on October 25th for violating team rules. He looks to start fresh somewhere new and hopes to get more playing time.
Last but certainly not least is Chris Marshall. Marshall is currently only ranked 30th on the transfer portal but let me explain why this athlete is a huge deal. Marshall played at Texas A&M and appeared in only six games this year, catching 11 passes for 108 yards. He was a 5-star recruit and ranked 25th in the 2022 class. He has been compared to the likes of Corey Davis, who is a wide receiver for the New York Jets. His crystal ball prediction has been the TCU horned frogs, but recent news suggests that Ole Miss is making a late push and could sway him.
Since the new transfer rule, the portal has been in absolute madness. For me, it’s been hard to keep up with these kids, especially with all the new high schoolers coming in. However, it is still suitable for the brand of college football. For example, Caleb Williams just transferred from Oklahoma to USC and won the Heisman.
This portal has so many implications for these kids. Some could make the best decisions of their lives, and some make the wrong decisions. Colorado is building up to become a powerhouse; Coach Prime is doing great work recruiting these kids. Although these transfers are just starting, I’m very pumped for what the future holds in this transfer portal.