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What are the Pros and Cons of the Transfer Portal? Step-by-Step guide for players

Transfer Portal
Transfer Portal is not always the best move. Please read my story and I hope it helps you in your decision.

The Transfer Portal has changed the NCAA and college football. Everyone dreams of scoring a touchdown for a major Division 1 program in front of 70,000 screaming fans. That would be a dream come true, but it is not always the way it works in the transfer portal.

I am writing this article today because there are a lot of players who are entering the Transfer Portal that have no guidance. They don’t know what they are looking for, they just know they want better. That is great to want better, but sometimes you maybe over-evaluating your talents. Hear me out before you click off the page.

I want to post an article on some of the biggest pros and cons to the Transfer Portal and then give you some advice. This will be a long article, but hopefully it will be informative.

So I started NFL Draft Diamonds about 10 years ago to help small school football players have a platform. Now a days many players are leaving their small schools to take their talents to bigger schools. That is amazing, and I wish the players the best, but let me explain something to you first, IT DOES NOT MATTER WHERE YOU PLAY IF YOU DOMINATE! READ THAT AGAIN IF YOU HAVE TO!

NFL scouts have really done a great job over the past several years to comb through thousands of draft eligible players and they are even looking overseas now. So, you do not have to worry about being overlooked. I will start with Cons, because I feel there are some big time negatives to the Transfer Portal, but it can also be amazing for some individuals.

CONS About the Transfer Portal

  1. Not everyone is going Power 5 – You can be a super star, an All-American, you can be the best player in your state, it doesn’t mean you are considered a Power 5 player. Power 5 players have an elite trait, with a little bit of God on their side. Just because you led your Division in a category or two, does not mean Alabama is going to be lining up to sign you. Why would they take a player who led their division with one year or even two years left from a small school when they can land a five star kid out of high school with potentially five years. It is about longevity, I am not trying to discredit you or say you are not Alabama worthy, just ask yourself this how many players have Alabama signed from the portal. That might help you when you do your research.
  2. Scholarships are LIMITED – There are only so many scholarships to go around. Everyone cannot land a scholarship. The minute you enter the Transfer Portal, you are burning a bridge, I do not care how it ends, if you are a star football player for your school and leave to test the waters, that coach is going to feel some kind of way about you. I would not be surprised if that coach, when asks talks trash about you. It is human nature, people are mean. So that could hurt your opportunities as well. At the end of the day, Scholarships are limited.
  3. The Transfer Portal is saturated with players – Every day, five to ten players enter the portal. So you are giving up your scholarship to maybe get a new one. That does not always happen. Look at this tweet from Tyler Lockett. He says it best!

PROS About the Transfer Portal

  1. Maybe able to fulfill your DREAM! – Kenneth Walker was on a 4-5 Wake Forest football team and transferred to Michigan State to become one of the top running backs in the country. It works for some. You maybe able to go to a school that never thought about you when you were coming out of school. This is a fun way to look at the portal, but you have to keep in mind that not everyone will get the same offers as Kenneth Walker.
  2. Level of Competition – If you are a small schooler moving up, it eliminates the level of competition worry some NFL teams may have when it comes to your play. Just remember the grass may not be greener on the other side. Many players transfer up to big schools and never see the field. So that could be a con as well, but if you dominate at the FBS level and have a solid FCS or D2/D3 career your chances of going pro are higher in my opinion.
  3. More NIL deals – The NCAA is currently about NIL’s and there are some schools that are getting kids paid. The Texas football team has a great deal in place for NIL’s and those kids are getting paid. So if you are looking to monetize, going to a bigger school can help your Name, Image and Likeness!

Here is my Step-To-Step Guide to see if you should enter the Transfer Portal. This is my opinion, but what I would tell a kid contemplating leaving his school. I hope you are still reading this.

Just because you play at a small schooler or you feel you are bigger than the school you attend now, it is not always a success story when moving up. I have watched many kids that had a draft grade move up to the FBS and they did not help their status. Every year there are roughly 23 players drafted from small schools. Because the Transfer Portal last year there were only 9 small schoolers drafted. Why is that?

I will tell you why, many of the best players entering the Portal went on to bigger schools and it lowered the number of the small schoolers getting drafted. It is not because the talent is there, it is they moved on so they were not counted as draftable players. Trey Lance was the highest small schooler drafted and he went third overall. Jabril Cox was the only kid from a small school that transferred up to a major D1 program that was drafted. The odds of getting drafted as a Transfer Portal player are slim, when it comes to becoming an impact player on the field of a major Power 5.

So here is my advice to you.

If you want to leave your school, talk to your coach. Explain your situation, then talk to compliance to enter your name in the portal, but remember this, the grass is not always greener. Some players will get tons of offers right away, some may not get any. You could go from being the pretty girl in the room, to not having anyone talk to you.

This happens all the time, but embrace the suck. If you are the pretty girl in the room at your school you are still a pretty girl. You may not be Power 5 pretty, or FBS pretty, but you could be D2 FINE! You could be D3 WIFE MATERIAL. So hear me out. Let’s say you are a FCS player and you were a stud at the FCS. You put up great stats you were a superstar at that level and you enter the portal. Maybe a few schools hit you up early and then it gets quiet, what should you do? Should you sit in the corner and pout about it?

No, You are still a pretty girl at the club, Get out on the dance floor and start communicating. Do not play hard to get to recruiters. Talk to them all. Follow them all back. Strike up the first conversation. You never know where that could lead. You may end up going to a Division 2 school and winning a Championship. Who is going to get more looks, a Championship level player or a player who sits the bench?

You have to play. If you are going into the transfer portal, and you are a solid player and feel you are the best player in the country, that is fine to have those thoughts, but that does not mean we have to agree with you. You maybe the only person that thinks they are the best. Scouts watch film, they know how good you are, some miss your film, you cannot get mad, because you had a good boyfriend that you just left. Remember this is a choice that you make. No one forces you into the Transfer Portal. You are leaving a good situation. So I am going to use another horrible analogy because I can, it is my site. You are engaged to an amazing woman, she is helping you live debt free, she is helping your image and everything is working the right way. The world is taking notice and you are becoming a popular couple.

Then one day you wake up and have a mid-life crisis, You feel you are better than your situation. You want the hot girl, and a new car. You want to upgrade your house. You leave, because you are confident you can find a nice home and better situation.

Well, you have two options, you could end up with a Maserati and a hot chick at Alabama (PROBABLY WON’T HAPPEN, I AM NOT HATING), or you could end up with a Camry and with a cute girl. The grass is not always greener. You will still have to watch your old girl continue her life without you, and you are going to have to accept the downgrade, or if you are lucky the upgrade.

I hope you get my analogy, but at the end of the day, the Transfer Portal can be great for players, but if you have more than one year left, your odds increase immensely. Grad Transfers have it the hardest. You would much better go to a school you can play right now than going to a school you may never touch the field.

Imagine going with the hot chick and the Maserati and having to sit in the trunk because she was embarrassed to have you next to her? That is the situation when you sit the bench!

NFL Draft Diamonds was created to assist the underdogs playing the sport. We call them diamonds in the rough. My name is Damond Talbot, I have worked extremely hard to help hundreds of small school players over the past several years, and will continue my mission. We have several contributors on this site, and if they contribute their name and contact will be in the piece above. You can email me at [email protected]

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