There’s a mountain of uncertainly surrounding the 2020 College Football season. Recently, the Big 10 and PAC 12 have announced they will be competing with members of their respective conferences only. Meanwhile, the Big 12, SEC, and ACC conferences have yet to make an official decision. Still, as of this moment, the season will happen in some capacity. The transfer portal has been an important new aspect of the game. Today, we’ll take a look at the top 10 impact transfers in 2020.
Top 10 Impact Transfers in 2020
10. Khalil Herbert: Running Back: Virginia Tech
We’ll start our countdown at the running back position. Herbert moves from the Big 12 to the ACC as the Hokies grab a 1,700-yard rusher from the Jayhawks. With the loss of leading rusher Deshawn McClease due to an early entry into the NFL, Herbert should be able to walk into a starting role.
9. Jashaun Corbin: Running Back: Florida State
The Seminoles have the possibility of being a very good offense under new head man Mike Norvell. James Blackman and Tamorrion Terry are a powerful force through the air. But, the Seminoles needed a game-breaking running back with the loss of Cam Akers. Corbin didn’t get a ton of opportunities at Texas A&M, but he averaged five yards per carry. If Corbin can get solid offensive play they could become a top 20 offense.
8. Keytaon Thompson: Quarterback: Virginia
Bryce Perkins was one of the most underrated quarterbacks in the 2019 season. In fact, he was a big reason the Cavaliers made it to the ACC Championship Game. Now, enter Keytaon Thompson. He didn’t have a large sample size at Mississippi State, but he’ll need to improve upon his 48% completion percentage. But, his size and dual-threat ability should give Virginia a chance to get back into the title game.
7. Chase Brice: Quarterback: Duke
The Blue Devils took a step back last year, particularly on the offensive side of the ball after a 5-7 campaign. Duke was 94th in the nation in scoring and 114th in total offense a year ago. Now, it will most likely be Brice or bust. Even though unproven, it’s a good option for the Devils. If nothing else, Brice is a winner which was clear when he saved the season for the Tigers in 2018. Brice should get Duke back to a bowl game this season.
6. Trey Sermon: Running Back: Ohio State
Ohio State had one of the most dynamic graduate transfers last year in Justin Fields. The Buckeyes had one of the best offenses in the nation and very little will change this year. A great quarterback room, an outstanding offensive line, and a fabulous group of receivers return. But, the loss of J.K. Dobbins and achilles injury of Master Teague looms large. Sermon split time in the Oklahoma backfield but still ran for 2,076 yards and 22 touchdowns in three seasons. Although not as explosive as Dobbins, Sermon should be more than adequate.
5. Jake Bentley: Quarterback: Utah
As we continue to look at the top 10 impact transfers in 2020, we move to the PAC 12. It’s hard to imagine a tougher way to end a season than the Utes did a year ago after having a legitimate chance at a playoff spot. But, Utah loses plenty on both sides of the ball and could be in for a rebuilding year. However, Bentley comes in to soften the blow. He has plenty of experience and is a solid quarterback. His career 7,500 yards, 52 touchdowns, and a 63% completion thrower give reason to believe this could be a reload and not a rebuild.
4. Feleipe Franks: Quarterback: Arkansas
The Chad Morris experiment at Arkansas is mercifully over for Hog fans. Now, Sam Pittman takes over and brings Kendal Briles with him as the offensive coordinator. Franks is a significant upgrade at the position and the offense has nowhere to go but up. If the SEC plays non-conference games they have an outside shot at a bowl with what will be a considerable improvement on offense with Franks at the helm.
3. K.J. Costello: Quarterback: Mississippi State
It’s debatable that Costello could have the best numbers with his new team as anyone on this list. In his junior year, he threw for over 3,500 yards and 29 touchdowns at Stanford. But, with the hiring of Mike Leach, his numbers should soar in Starkville. Look for the Bulldogs to struggle early without a spring practice and a brand new offense but could become dangerous down the stretch.
2. D’Eriq King: Quarterback: Miami
The offense was downright abysmal for the Canes last year. If you take away outbursts against Bethune Cookman and Louisville, they averaged 20 points per game over the remaining 11 contests. Miami added SMU offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee as well as one of the top dual-threat quarterbacks in King. He is good enough to put a team on his back and with inexperience at running back and wide receiver King might just have to do that.
1. Jamie Newman: Quarterback: Georgia
It’s hard to say that a quarterback that threw for 26 touchdowns and five interceptions had a bad year. But, that was the case with Jake Fromm last year. And, in a surprising move bolted for the NFL. However, the Bulldogs received a gift when Newman announced his transfer to Georgia. Newman threw for over 2,800 yards and 29 touchdowns while rushing for another 574 yards and six touchdowns on the ground. Newman has the physical tools to be better than Fromm. But, his first start in a Bulldog uniform likely will be in Tuscaloosa against the Tide. If Georgia wins, they have an inside shot at an SEC championship and a return to the playoffs.