Today is Thursday, Jan. 19, which means that until May, the transfer portal is officially closed. That means if a player is still on your roster at this point, they should be locked in through spring ball. That’s especially good for Texas A&M, as the Aggies lost a total of 24 scholarship players to the transfer portal over the past two months.
While the portal window closing doesn’t mean players in the portal have all decided where they are going, the vast majority have, with spring classes beginning either last week or this week on most campuses. So where did those 24 players end up? We take a look.
- Haynes King: Georgia Tech
- Eli Stowers: New Mexico State
- L.J. Johnson: SMU
- Chris Marshall: Ole Miss
- Chase Lane: Georgia Tech
- Yulkieth Brown: Tulane
- Devin Price: Appalachian State
- Blake Smith: Oklahoma
- P.J. Williams: SMU
- Anthony Lucas: USC
- Tunmise Adileye: Michigan State
- Marcus Burris: Indiana
- Elijah Jeudy: Nebraska
- Adarious Jones: TBD
- Ish Harris: Houston
- Andre White: Georgia Tech
- Tarian Lee: Georgia Southern
- Denver Harris: LSU
- Marquis Groves-Killebrew: Louisville
- Smoke Bouie: Georgia
- Myles Jones: Duke
- Brian George: Houston
- Josh Moten: Marshall
- Caden Davis: Ole Miss
What should we make of this ‘portal exodus:’
From a sheer numbers perspective, Texas A&M led the nation in transfer portal entries. That makes for an easy narrative that things are not going well in College Station. And while that is undoubtedly a lot of talent and depth headed out the door, it may not be as catastrophic as it may seen on the surface. Some things to keep in mind:
- Texas A&M has lost 3 five-star and 18 four-star players to either the portal, the draft or graduation. But they’ve also added 3 five-star and 12 four-star players from high school and the portal. A&M has some ground to make up in filling out their roster, but having the same number of five star players and only six fewer four-star players than last year is hardly the disaster that many have portrayed it to be. And there’s a good chance they aren’t done adding to the total coming in.
- Of the 22 players who started in the Aggies’ season-ending win over No. 5 LSU, not a single one entered the transfer portal (19 of them return and three are early entrants to the NFL Draft).
- Only 14 of the 24 A&M players who entered the transfer portal ended up at another Power 5 program. That’s not meant to diss those players, but simply to illustrate that many of these portal departures are your run of the mill transfer seeking more playing time, and several of the players who ended up at other top programs (Marshall, Harris, Adileye) reportedly had disciplinary issues that would have prevented them from returning even if they wanted to do so.
- While the portal attrition is significant, not enough has been made of how virtually nonexistent the Aggies’ losses due to graduation are this year. With S Demani Richardson and TE Max Wright announcing their returns for one more season, A&M currently stands to only lose THREE scholarship seniors from last year’s roster (WR Ainias Smith, WR Jalen Preston and LS Connor Choate). And it is not a foregone conclusion that all of those players leave. With only three underclassmen declaring for the draft, A&M was seemingly always destined to have significant portal departures simply to make room for the incoming recruiting classes.
The portal window hit A&M hard, but mostly with regard to depth rather than starters. Granted, depth matters in college football. You rotate players at a lot of positions, and injuries happen that make backups suddenly become starters. But this team will still be one of the most talented in college football, with a lot more game time experience than it had a year ago. If the coaching changes click, this could be a team that could do some real damage in 2023, even with the portal departures.
How would you characterize A&M’s portal losses?
This poll is closed
Concerning but recoverable
No big deal