Saturday, April 6, 2024

Power ranking the top QBs in the NCAA transfer portal

The 30-day window to enter the NCAA transfer portal opened on Monday, and nearly 1,200 college football players are searching for a change of scenery.

Quarterback is one of the more loaded position groups in the portal with more than 80 signal callers looking for a new school — all of whom were rated as a three-star or better in their respective recruiting classes, per On3.

Here’s a look at the top five quarterbacks in the transfer portal as of Wednesday morning:

1. Cameron Ward, Washington State

Ward had two really good seasons at Washington State, putting up strong numbers (6,966 yards passing, 61 total touchdowns, 16 interceptions) and proving to be one of the most efficient signal callers in the country despite having an average at best supporting cast. He’s got a big arm, a quick release, and he reads and processes defenses as well as any QB in the NCAA.

2. Dante Moore, UCLA

A former five-star recruit, Moore had a disappointing freshman with the Bruins. playing in nine games, but only seeing significant time in four of them. Moore was one of the more accurate passers in the 2023 class with the ability to stand tall in the pocket and deliver touch passes all over the field. Moore simply wasn’t a fit in UCLA head coach Chip Kelly’s offensive system, but he’s got plenty of upside in the right environment.

3. Dillon Gabriel, Oklahoma

Gabriel, who threw for 3,660 yards, 30 touchdowns and six interceptions, has a lot to be proud of this season — most notably handing No. 3 Texas its only loss. His resume boasts two-plus seasons of solid numbers at UCF plus two good years in Norman, and he has the kind of experience (50 starts) to be a one-year asset to a program like USC or Oregon that’s about to lose its starter to the NFL Draft.

4. Riley Leonard, Duke

Once in the conversation to be the third QB taken in the 2024 draft, Leonard’s 2023 didn’t go according to plan. He was limited to just seven games due to injury, and he got little help from his offensive line or receivers. He is the prototypical size of an NFL QB (6-foot-4, 212 pounds), and he has a strong arm with nice touch, anticipation and athleticism. One year in an offense tailored to his skills and Leonard could be a Round 1 or 2 QB in the 2025 draft.

5. Will Howard, Kansas State

Howard showed great improvement from his junior to senior seasons, passing for 1,010 more yards and nine more touchdowns while rushing for 329 more yards and six more touchdowns. He has good mobility and ability to escape the pocket when under pressure plus an NFL-caliber arm. He’s also comfortable taking snaps from under center, where a majority of his came with the Wildcats, and he would be a great fit in a true pro-style offense.

Honorable mentions: Grayson McCall, Coastal Carolina; Will Rogers, Mississippi State; Kyle McCord, Ohio State; Tyler Van Dyke, Miami; D.J. Uiagalelei, Oregon State.

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