How did Oklahoma rebuild in 2021 transfer portal?

·2 min read

After the pandemic year, anticipation grows for the upcoming season and a sense of normalcy again. College football’s transfer portal has added to the excitement, similar to the free agency period in the NFL. Programs have been replenished by replacing departures with experienced players from other universities.

The NCAA transfer portal was initially introduced in 2018 giving players the opportunity to switch teams and explore options. Players do not have to ask for permission, they simply put in a request and enter their name. Once approved and their name shows up in the portal, teams can vie for their services. Players can withdraw their name at any time and just because a name is entered, does not specifically mean that player will leave.

Some teams have made bigger splashes than others via the transfer portal, adding players to their current roster. As summer approaches, 247Sports compiled a list of teams considered to be the greatest transfer portal winners. The Oklahoma Sooners were among the group.

“The Knoxville-to-Norman movement was forged this offseason, as Oklahoma managed to land three players who left Tennessee following the firing of coach Jeremy Pruitt. Running back Eric Gray (2) offensive lineman Wanya Morris (7) and safety Key Lawrence (20) all bring SEC experience to the Big 12, highlighted by Gray who had four 100-yard performances last season. Receiver Mike Woods (44) from Arkansas is another newcomer who brings plenty of product with him.”

Lincoln Riley also added a quarterback in Penn State’s Micah Bowens and interior offensive lineman Robert Congel from Arizona. Congel is competing with Chris Murray who transferred from UCLA last year at center. Gray is one of OU’s most promising newcomers with his one-cut ability and is projected to be one of the nation’s top backs with the departure of Rhamondre Stevenson to the NFL. Morris earned Freshman All-American honors and even though he never hit his ceiling with the Vols, Bill Bedenbaugh has a way of getting the most out of his lineman. He will be unleashed in the trenches protecting Spencer Rattler.