Faster transfers should impact PCP execution
Much like the NFL’s free agency period, the transfer portal has provided college football coaches with a new avenue to acquire talent. Instead of adding an unproven high school perspective, the programs are able to grab an experienced upper class man through a transfer to grow the roster and contribute immediately. List building and recruiting have evolved.
Spring practices have ended, and with top-tier transfers in new programs, CBS Sports’ advocated for high-impact transfers to guide teams to college football playoffs in 2021. Two Oklahoma Sooners were featured. on the list: running back Eric Gray and offensive lineman Wanya Morris. Here’s a breakdown of the two transfers to Tennessee.
Going twice here since the Sooners not only have two impact transfers for their playoff push, but have them both from the same place. Morris and Gray were the No. 2 and No. 7 players, respectively, in a 2019 Tennessee recruiting class ranked No. 13 in the country. Morris was a two-year starter for the Vols, and Gray became one of the SEC’s top running backs last season.
Now Morris is adding a huge boost to an offensive line losing several starters and Gray is ready to immediately contribute to the running back’s rotation. There are easy explanations for the Oklahoma hype because of Spencer Rattler, but just as important is how the rest of the offense around the quarterback has improved. – Chip Patterson
With the departure of Creed Humphrey and Adrian Ealy to the NFL, Wanya Morris will help anchor Bill Bedenbaugh’s unit. Morris started at left tackle for two seasons with the Vols and will have to go on to win the role with Oklahoma. Erik Swenson was effective on the spot for two seasons at OU. Throughout the spring, the coaches were in awe of his inquisitive and “asking a lot of questions” nature.
Track and field is key to Bedenbaugh’s line with sweaters and Morris fits the mold. He’s productive in both pass protection and stroke blocking – moving to the second tier to clear lanes for rushers. Morris will be tasked with protecting famed OU quarterback Spencer Rattler and opening holes on the scrimmage line for Tennessee’s other transfer, Eric Gray.
Gray is adjusting to life as an early and new offensive playbook. The versatile back has superb speed over short areas and perfected its spring pass protection at Norman. With the loss of Rhamondre Stevenson to the NFL and the departure of Seth McGowan from the program, Gray will be integral to the OU’s rushed attack in the fall.
His elusiveness and vision have already impressed. In the spring exhibition game, he made his way into the end zone on a 19-yard run. Gray accelerated into the hole, put his foot in the ground, and missed a guy in the field. This is what coaches are looking for. He will undoubtedly thrive in Lincoln Riley’s system and improve the team’s screen play with his pass-catching ability.
Both are players to watch in 2021.