SEC Football: Transfer Portal Notable Names

While the spring college football transfer portal has been quieter than may suspected, a few big names have entered out of the SEC that are worth noting and following. I dive into each and what type of program you could project them to transfer to.
Nov 24, 2023; Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA; Arkansas Razorbacks quarterback Jacolby Criswell (6)
Nov 24, 2023; Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA; Arkansas Razorbacks quarterback Jacolby Criswell (6) / Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Well, the spring transfer portal is open. And it is far from the wildest we have ever seen which was alluded to by Josh Pate a few weeks ago on his YouTube channel, Late Kick with Josh.

Note that players that enter the transfer portal in the SEC in the fall can transfer to another SEC school. The window that just opened being the spring window, that is not an option. These players need to either transfer to another power five conference like the ACC, Big Ten or Big 12 or a group of five school.

And this is probably the primary reason this portal window has not gone crazy like Pate anticipated it would, making it no different than last year’s spring portal window. However, it has produced at least a few SEC portal entries worth noting.

Here are the SEC Players that have Entered the Transfer Portal so Far Worth Noting

Andrew Paul (Georgia)

With all of the talent the Georgia Bulldogs have at the running back position, this one is not that surprising as Paul looked to be buried on the depth chart again this season in his third season in Athens.

Paul looked to be behind fall transfer portal acquisition Trevor Etienne and running backs Branson Robinson and Roderick Robinson II. Although Robinson is still recovering from a leg injury, he is projected to be ahead of Paul on the depth chart when he returns.

All of this competition still ahead of Paul is even with the Bulldogs losing Kendall Milton and Daijun Edwards this past season, which had Paul buried even further on the depth chart despite Etienne not yet being in Athens.

Paul was a three-star recruit according to On3. And was ranked 432nd nationally at the time. Paul tore his ACL in 2022 in preseason practice and for the first time seemed to be back to full strength, but he saw the competition ahead of him and chose to depart.

As crazy as the college football world is today though, do not be surprised if Paul eventually makes a return to Athens with a few years of eligibility remaining.

Elijah Herring (Tennessee)

Herring led the Vols in tackles last season with 79 from the middle linebacker position. It is very rare that you see a leading tackler transferring because he may not get the opportunity to start the following season. Well, that is exactly what is happening with Herring.

Herring was inserted into the starting lineup last season due to the injury of Keenan Pili early on in the 2023 season. Pili is back healthy and with Herring announcing he entered the portal, it is obvious that the middle linebacker spot was projected to be Kili’s in 2024.

Herring has obviously put on great film with the productive season he had in 2023, so expect him to arise for another power five team shortly who could use his presence as a starter at middle linebacker.

Jacolby Criswell (Arkansas)

Jacoby Criswell spent three seasons in Chapel Hill backing up quarterback Drake Maye for the North Carolina Tar Heels from 2020-2022. Criswell decided to come home to his native state of Arkansas for the 2023 season where he backed up KJ Jefferson.

With Jefferson’s exit, things looking promising for Criswell to get his chance before newly hired offensive coordinator, Bobby Petrino went into the transfer portal this past fall and pulled now presumed starting Arkansas quarterback, Taylen Green who has been showing out since the beginning of spring practice.

This, combined with Green’s performance in the Arkansas Razorbacks spring game this past weekend led to not much of a surprise for Criswell to announce he is transferring.

With only two years of eligibility remaining, do not be surprised if Criswell ends up at a group of five school. If he wanted to keep sitting the bench, in theory he would have stayed home and stayed put in Fayetteville. At this point, he probably has the itch to play more than anything else. And you cannot blame him.