Call it whatever you want, but free agency has arrived in college football.
By numbers: Since August 1, more than 3,000 football players in all NCAA divisions have entered the transfer portal. This includes over 1,400 FBS players – an average of 11 per team.
Background: The portal was introduced in 2018 as a way to give student-athletes more freedom of movement. Then a pair of 2021 rule changes turned the off-season into a game of musical chairs.
- Immediate Eligibility: In April, The NCAA Begins Allowing Transfers To play for your new school immediately instead of waiting a year.
- Zero Change: The Zero Era debuted in July, giving athletes a reason to seek programs that will maximize their earning potential.
big picture: The transfer portal used to be a waiver wire for (mostly) backups looking for play time. Now, superstars are also taking advantage of this, using it to explore and discover their options. Excellent fit.
- There is a new phenomenon in QB Caleb Williams, Oklahoma, one of very soon start To enter the portal after the exit of Lincoln Riley.
- QB Dillon Gabriel, a three-year starter at UCF, heading to oklahoma Less than three weeks after committing to UCLA (commitment from the portal is not binding).
Bottom-line: Four years ago, players only needed the permission of their coach to contact another school. Now, the NFL stars of the future are getting Early glimpse of free agency – Subtract contracts and rules.
go in: Used for coaching carousel? Meet the QB Shuffle (And)