The best and brightest transfers – so far – this offseason. Who are the best players at each position? It’s the 2019 College Football All-Transfer Team.
It’s become every bit as interesting – and a whole lot more fun – than the throw-stuff-at-wall-and-hope-it-sticks recruiting world.
The emergence of the importance of grad transfer means college football has its own version of free agency. And for those who haven’t graduated yet, more and more, players who aren’t happy are ready to wait it out and go somewhere else.
It has been a huge offseason so far for transfers, and these are the best and most important.
2019 All-Transfer Team: Offense
QB Jalen Hurts
Alabama to Oklahoma
For the long haul, Ohio State getting Justin Fields was bigger – no debate if you want to put him here – and it’s possible that Tate Martell going to Miami could turn into the key to this year’s transfer season, but … Oklahoma got Jalen Hurts.
Fields has a much higher upside, but for right now, the Sooners getting a national championship-level college quarterback almost assures that the machine keeps rolling. Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray were amazing, but getting Hurts gives Oklahoma an honest shot at playing for the national championship this season.
– Oklahoma Gets Jalen Hurts: What Does It All Mean?
RB James Gilbert
Ball State to Kansas State
Kansas State needs a running back to take over for Alex Barnes, and Gilbert will fit right in. The 5-9, 200-pounder ran for 2,806 yards and 30 touchdowns for Ball State, ripping off 1,332 yards and 12 scores as a sophomore, but was hurt as a junior. He’s tough enough to be an instant workhorse.
RB Asa Martin
Auburn to Miami
Out of all the transfers making their way to Coral Gables, Martin might turn into one of the biggest breakout stars – in 2020. The former big-time recruit for Auburn only ran 13 times for 57 yards with two catches for 36 yards last season, but there was one big problem – he played in five games. There was a bit of a mixup, but in the end, Martin lost a year, and now he’ll have to wait another season before getting on the field.
WR Jalen McCleskey
Oklahoma State to Tulane
It wasn’t given a whole lot of hype or press, but Tulane landed a true No. 1 target to open things up for the Willie Fritz spread-option attack. McCleskey caught 167 passes for 1,865 yards and 17 touchdowns in his time at Oklahoma State, highlighted by a 73-grab sophomore season.
WR KJ Osborn
Buffalo to Miami
After flying under the radar a bit on a Buffalo team full of offensive stars, Osborn had his breakout junior season catching 53 passes for 892 yards and seven touchdowns. He won’t be Miami’s No. 1 guy – that should still be Jeff Thomas – but the explosive playmaker will be a key starter.
TE Chris Cunningham
Virginia Tech to UNDECIDED
The 6-2, 245-pound veteran doesn’t have prototypical size, but he can catch the ball. Underutilized with the Hokies, the grad transfer should be a bigger part of a passing scheme after catching 22 passes for 297 yards and seven touchdowns in his 18 games.
OT Drew Richmond
Tennessee to UNDECIDED
He’s almost exactly what Tennessee could use as part of its tackle rotation, but after never being able to break through or live up to his prep hype, he’s moving on. He might not be a sure-thing elite instant star as a grad transfer, but he’ll start somewhere.
OG Parker Braun
Georgia Tech to Texas
It was an interesting move for Braun considering he was going to have his shot to show that he was more than great blocker for an option offense. He’s not huge – at 6-3 and around 280 pounds – but he can move.
OG/C Jonah Jackson
Rutgers to Ohio State
The big boys all want him. Alabama and Oklahoma were on the list for his services, but the Buckeyes landed him. Jackson has the 6-4, 305 pound size and versatility to work anywhere on the line. He has experience at center.
OG/C Nathan Eldridge
Arizona to Oregon State
An all-star for the Cats, he couldn’t get past a slew of injuries and missed most of last season. The 6-3, 300-pounder is a proven veteran who can work anywhere on the interior.
OT D’Andre Plantin
Virginia Tech to North Texas
Expected to be a part of the Hokie interior line mix, he was never able to break through. Virginia Tech could use him this season, but he’s moving on to be a versatile blocker for the high-octane Mean Green attack.