Texas FCS schools make the most of the transfer portal

Courtesy of Texas Football

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Spring is a time for optimism. While the start of Spring Training in baseball is often regarded as the official beginning of spring, the flight of the pigskin breeds optimism for football fans.

This week, I will climb aboard the optimism train after beginning the Texas small college offseason series discussing coaching changes and players from Texas teams who have entered the transfer portal, which can be depressing for some fans.

This week is a list of players transferring to institutions to play football for a Texas FCS program next year. A few players on this list are from Power Five teams.

The top positions receiving the most attention in the transfer portal are along the offensive and defensive line, which affirms the popular phrase, “Football games are won in the trenches.”

This list is far from complete, with some incredibly talented players remaining in the portal, and I will revisit this during the summer months when most of the movement is finalized.

The 2020 FCS national champions, Sam Houston, suffered some notable losses to the transfer portal. However, the Bearkats added some impressive talent from the portal led by former Texas safety BJ Foster.

Foster joins former Wichita Falls Hirschi standout Lloyd Murray, who transferred from Colorado, and former Army quarterback Simeon Evans. SHSU also secured commitments from former Coastal Carolina defensive back Jordan Morris, former SMU linebacker Toby Ndukwe, and former Cal Poly offensive lineman Wade Willet.

Two teams in the FCS playoffs last season have added players from the transfer portal led by SFA, who signed two players from SEC schools. Former Tennessee quarterback Brian Maurer and former Arkansas running back Josh Oglesby headline a class that includes former South Dakota State defensive lineman Brandon Lane.

UIW made a splash by adding former Nicholls quarterback Lindsey Scott, who is the favorite to replace Cameron Ward. In addition, the Cardinals added a high-profile running back in Damarius Good from Central Florida.

Two schools at different stages of transferring to the FCS ranks have been busy in the portal. This year, every member of Tarleton’s recruiting class is a transfer led by former UIW defensive end Blaine Hoover.

The Texans added two former PAC-12 players from Washington State in running back Marshawn Buchanan and defensive back Halid Djibril.

Texas A&M-Commerce hit the transfer portal with force while preparing for its first season at FCS. The Lions hope former Ohio State quarterback Jagger LaRoe can jump-start an offense that was anemic at times last season.

Former Maryland offensive lineman Mitchell Gorgas will join three wide receivers, Keith Miller from Colorado, Treveon Johnson from SMU, and BJ Busbee from San Diego State in Commerce next season. The Lions are still looking to add more players from the transfer portal.

A few other notable players expected to make a splash this season are former Northern Illinois quarterback Justin Fomby, the projected starter at Houston Baptist. In addition, Prairie View A&M added linebacker KeyShawn Johnson from ULM and defensive lineman DeZaun Brooks from Eastern Michigan.

Abilene Christian expects former Arizona State quarterback Ethan Long to compete for playing time with former Minnesota defensive back Abner Dubar. Lamar diverted from recruiting mainly high school athletes adding former UTEP quarterback Jakolby Longino and former Rice running back Khalan Griffin.

I want to stress that this was not an exhaustive list, so please avoid sending hate mail if you feel I overlooked your school or favorite player.

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