Dymamic Duo: A Sports Column


Zachary Grover and Pavle Ristic , Editors-In-Chief

 The transfer portal, a hot topic of conversation for sports fans. You’ve got the sports talk show host point of view, the older generation’s view of “back in my day college sports was about loyalty,” and the point of view of younger college sports fans who can’t remember a time when a player’s name said by an announcer was not followed by his or her former school. Here’s the truth: the transfer portal is not killing college sports; it is an integral part of them.

   First off, entering the transfer portal is a risk. According to the NCAA Transfer Portal statistics, about 1300 FBS football players entered the transfer portal after last season and as of January 24, 48 percent did not have new teams. Spots on college athletic teams are hard to come by, thus athletes are taking a risk when they forfeit their spot in one program for the hope of a spot in another (twitter.com). 

   That being said, many athletes transfer because a new opportunity will give them a better chance to succeed and showcase their talents. Heisman Trophy Winner Joe Burrow, was at Ohio State for three seasons before transferring to LSU, where he won the Heisman, led the Tigers to a National Championship, and was drafted first overall to the Cincinnati Bengals in 2020. Burrow rocketed to stardom with the help of the transfer portal. 

   Closer to home, USC Guard Boogie Ellis (a Mission Bay High School graduate) transferred from Memphis to USC this past season and was second on the team in scoring (12.5 points per game) which included some big games by Ellis in the Pac-12 Conference Tournament (espn.com).

   People that say players should show loyalty have not been paying attention around college sports recently. If the coaches aren’t even showing loyalty how can you expect the college kids with pro-sports dreams they mentor to show loyalty? Former Notre Dame Head Football Coach Brian Kelly took a job at LSU mid-season, while the Notre Dame Fighting Irish were waiting to find out if they were in the 2021 College Football Playoff. According to Sports Illustrated, players found out about his decision in news reports and then Kelly sent out a text to the team saying “whoops, sorry” before calling the team in for a morning meeting the next day when he spoke for eleven minutes and walked out the door (sportsillustrated.com).

   The main qualm with the transfer portal is that it makes college sports too much like professional sports. Newsflash, college sports are the unofficial Minor Leagues for plenty of professional sports. All you have to do is look at how many college freshmen have been “one-and-done” in college and are now making the jump to the majors.  Also, with the NCAAs new name, image, and likeness (NIL) policy, college sports is more a business than it ever has been before. It is the way the game is trending. Players benefit, schools get to retool their programs after players leave, graduate, or get drafted, and us fans still get the crazed college athletics atmosphere and unforgettable storylines.