The Blitz: LSC Coaches discuss the transfer portal, SFA and Texas A&M-Commerce adds to staff, UMHB adds another transfer

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I set out at the Lone Star Conference Media Day to find out whether the transfer portal has a positive or negative impact. Unsurprisingly, the transfer portal is having a mixed effect on LSC teams. 

Angelo State has lost some talented players to the transfer portal the past two offseasons, but coach Jeff Girsch has seen an area of positive impact.

“It helps with our high school recruiting,” Girsch said. “A lot of the FCS and some Division II schools are recruiting the transfer portal for about half of their players. That leaves a lot of high school kids unrecruited, and it’s helped us identify some great high school players in the state of Texas to recruit.”

West Texas A&M coach Hunter Hughes has seen the negative impacts and uncovered an underlying issue with the transfer portal.

“I don't know how much it's helped. I know it's hurt. We've lost two starters because of it, but I can't be upset with them. They graduated, so they did everything we asked them to do,” Hughes said. “It just comes on so quick I think that it forced us to reach out to a lot of guys in the transfer portal, and I think some of them have used us to get offers from the smaller DI’s since we can’t sign them to an NLI or something similar.”

Midwestern State coach Bill Maskill said his staff set out to find a way to offset the players lost through the transfer portal.

“You know the transfer portal probably doesn't affect division two as much as you think. Texas Tech kids are not looking to go to Midwestern or any of these schools,” Maskill said. “We looked at what the bigger schools were doing, so we started pulling from a level down - kind of like what they're doing to us. We didn't lose anybody (through) the transfer portal. I can't tell you it's helped us because I haven't seen what these guys can do yet.”

Justin Carrigan has seen both sides of the transfer portal at UTPB and believes it’s just part of the ebbs and flows of recruiting.

“I think It's both directions like they come and go, and you never want to see them leave your program. But when it happens, you know you're recruiting some good players, and then you gotta fill voids,” Carrigan said. “It's just different. I feel more for the high school coaches and kids who are getting left out." 

Carrigan then alluded to a thought that was prevalent by many in attendance at media day. When I mentioned those kids could be good recruits for him, he replied, "And then they go."

It surprised me that many people who love DII football mention that this level of football is becoming another level of junior college. The future of DII is something that I will focus on at a later time, but it’s safe to say that realignment still has many people uncertain about the future.

Western Athletic Conference

Southland Conference

Southwestern Athletic Conference

Lone Star Conference

  • I spoke with LSC Commissioner Jay Poerner about the future of the LSC and if having a conference that spans from Kingsville, Texas to Canada is sustainable.

“It's a lot of change and uncertainty,” Poerner said. “What usually happens with realignment is it starts at the top, and it trickles its way down, so I think what we try to do is just kind of recognize our strengths, and we are strong. We have 17 full-time member institutions.  

“At the same time, we need to be aware and cognizant of our surroundings. We need to be nimble and always looking for opportunities. That's our goal - always be looking for opportunities.”

American Southwest Conference

Southern Athletic Association

  • Trinity is ranked No. 9 in the preseason poll after finishing 9-1 last season, with the Tigers’ only loss to national champion UMHB in the opening round of the playoffs.

Sooner Athletic Conference

Southwestern Junior College Football Conference

  • Tyler head coach Tanner Jacobson was interviewed by David Gibson for NBC affiliate KETK and discussed instilling competition in his players and the Apaches QB battle.

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