College football stock watch: Teams who are trending up this offseason

The college football offseason provides teams with multiple ways to improve their programs.

Teams like Michigan State and Baylor look to build off of breakout 2021 seasons while programs like LSU and USC have optimism they will bounce back with new head coaches. Along with Lincoln Riley, the Trojans added the top-rated transfer in the portal in former Oklahoma Sooner quarterback Caleb Williams.

Texas A&M cleaned up on the 2021 recruiting trail, signing the No. 1 class of all time. The Aggies class included a whopping seven five-star prospects.

Texas made headlines with the acquisition of a talented group of transfers with former five-star quarterback Quinn Ewers. The Longhorns also finished strong on the recruiting trail, ending with the No. 5 class in the country. Not to mention the Horns return Bijan Robinson and Xavier Worthy from last year’s squad.

Many schools feel like their future is going in the right direction. Here is a list of eight teams whose stock is currently on the rise this offseason:


Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

2021 was a magical season in Waco. The Bears went 11-2 winning the Big 12 championship and the Sugar Bowl. Dave Aranda proved he is the man for the job and has been locked up to a huge contract extension.


Tim Flores-USA TODAY Sports

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Houston quietly had a really good 2021 season. The Cougars went 12-2 and finished their season with a bowl victory over the Auburn Tigers. Dana Holgerson has a major chunk of his roster returning for next season and is looking ready for the upcoming move to the Big 12.


Syndication: The Register-Guard

Miami made one of the biggest moves of a wild coaching carousel when they hired Mario Cristobal away from Oregon. Cristobal has since hired an elite staff and the recruiting benefits are already paying off. Miami has the chance to become a consistent ACC contender very quickly.

Michigan State

Syndication: Detroit Free Press

Michigan State was one of the better stories of the 2021 season. Transfer running back Kenneth Walker led the Spartans to an 11-2 season and Peach Bowl victory. The biggest news to Michigan State is head coach Mel Tucker is back after being one of the popular names in the coaching carousel.


Syndication: The Knoxville News-Sentinel

Similar to Baylor above, Pitt had a breakout 2021 season. The Panthers ended Clemson’s ACC title streak and return the Biletnikoff winner Jordan Addison. Transfer quarterback Kedon Solvis is a perfect fit for the system and should help soften the blow from losing Kenny Pickett.


Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

Texas was one of the more disappointing teams in 2021, going 5-7 with an inexcusable home loss to Kansas. Luckily the offseason could not have gone much better for the Horns. Texas did extremely well in the transfer portal and recruiting cycle. Returning stars Bijan Robinson and Xavier Worthy return as two of the best players in college football.

Texas A&M

Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports

Texas A&M did not have the season they wanted in 2021. Losing quarterback Haynes King early on was a major setback en route to an 8-4 season.

The Aggies still feel really good about their future under Jimbo Fisher. They signed the No. 1 recruiting class in the 2021 cycle and added LSU quarterback Max Johnson from the transfer portal.


Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The hiring of Lincon Riley totally changed the outlook of USC’s program. The Trojans overhauled the roster with multiple stud transfers and are starting to lock up the best players in the state for the 2023 recruiting cycle.