The Top 20 College Football Transfer Players To Watch in 2010
Sometimes a highly-rated recruit works out and sometimes they don't. In some situations they're labeled as a bust, but in others they're labeled as a player lost in the mix who needs a fresh start.
Those in that second category are usually the ones who end up transferring to a new school for a chance to get on the field and show everyone what they're capable of doing.
In 2010 there will be quite a few transfer players to watch that could have huge impacts either as key reserves or starters. Many of these players were highly regarded coming out of high school and showed flashes of their potential, but never really got it going at their former schools. Others were lesser known, but now emerge as legitimate starting options for programs in need of support.
It may be that the timing was right for a certain player or that they're actually as good as once advertised. Regardless of the situation, here are the top 20 transfer players to watch out for in 2010.
20. LB Dex Jones, Western Michigan (From Wisconsin)
Jones was once a Three-Star linebacker ranked in the top 50 at his position coming out of high school, but he dropped down the Badgers depth chart until he was listed as the third-string full back. After transferring last summer, he has three years of eligibility left and will compete for one of the starting linebacker jobs at Central Michigan.
There's still a lot of untapped potential with Jones, and the change of scenery might be what he needs to get going.
19. RB Aundre Dean, TCU (from UCLA)
After rating as a top 10 running back coming out of high school, Aundre Dean has put up only 22 yards on 10 carries to this point in his collegiate career. He left UCLA to find a better playing situation, but you have to wonder what he was thinking coming to TCU.
Right now he's fourth on the depth chart at running back and likely will have to switch positions or transfer again to have a chance of seeing any significant playing time. He's got the talent though, so maybe he finds a way to get it done.
18. WR Brodrick Smith, Kansas State (from Minnesota)
Brodrick Smith transferred from Minnesota to find himself in a pretty good playing situation at Kansas State. This team needs playmakers on offense and is thin at receiver. The former Three-Star receiver hasn't done much to this point in his career, but the possibilities to produce should be there in 2010.
After catching only five passes in 2008, expect a lot more from him this time around.
17. QB L.D. Crow, UCF (from Stanford)
L.D Crow was in a difficult situation at Stanford, playing behind Andrew Luck, so you can understand why he felt the need to transfer. The former Three-Star prospect was never going to pass Luck on the depth chart, but he'll get a fair fight at UCF to do just that.
He's up against three other quarterbacks for the starting gig, but Crow has a lot of talent and could actually pull out ahead at some point this season.
16. QB Taylor Cook, Rice (from Miami)
Taylor Cook is one of three quarterbacks who transferred from Miami in 2008, and like his former teammate Robert Marve, he'll get the chance to be a starting quarterback in 2010. Cook wasn't nearly as highly-regarded as Marve coming out of high school, but he's got a strong arm and should make an impact at Rice.
The Owls have been searching for answers on offense for the last year ever since they lost their three best offensive weapons after the 2008 season. Cook might be one of those answers.
15. RB Raymond Carter, Colorado State (from UCLA)
Raymond Carter was a Four-Star running back coming out of high school in 2007, but was disappointing as a freshman. He rushed for only 29 yards and a touchdown before being buried on the depth chart and transferring out of town to Colorado State.
It will be interesting to see if this former high school star is able to get his act together or if he was simply a bust and UCLA was right to bench him.
14. WR Aaron Pflugrad, Arizona State (from Oregon)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images
The Sun Devils would be in a bit of a bind if it wasn't for Aaron Pflugrad entering the mix. With Chris McGaha and Kyle Williams gone—their top two receivers from last season—Pflugrad should be in the mix for a ton of playing time if not a starting spot outright.
He showed some potential as a true freshman at Oregon, but never really got the chance to get on the field and show what he's capable of.
13. WR Jermaine McKenzie, Memphis (from Miami)
McKenzie was a Four-Star receiver in the 2007 recruiting class, but he was part of very competitive rotation a wide receiver in Miami and never really got the chance to get involved with the offense. He played in only three games with the Hurricanes and then left for Memphis.
Now with the openings at receiver after the team lost their top two receivers from 2009, he'll get the chance to take the field with his twin brother Tremaine.
12. QB Willy Korn, Marshall (from Clemson)
Marshall's quarterback situation is pretty good at the moment with Brian Anderson returning as the starter and Willy Korn transferring over from Clemson. It would be surprising to see Korn take the starting spot from opening day, but he's a talented player who will push Anderson hard.
It wouldn't be surprising at all if he ended up stealing the starting job by mid-season. And with the amount of hype coming out of this program the last few months, they may be sleepers in Conference USA.
11. WR Josh Smith, UCLA (from Colorado)
Josh Smith transfers from Colorado and hopes to enter the fold as a potential deep-threat receiver for the Bruins in 2010 as well as have the chance to compete to be a return man. UCLA already has a talented group of wide-outs, but with Smith in the mix they might have the top unit in the Pac-10.
After catching 54 passes for 878 yards and three touchdowns in two seasons with the Buffaloes and doing some serious damage as a return man, he might find limited minutes in 2010.
10. WR Toney Clemons, Colorado (from Michigan)
Toney Clemons is expected to be the No. 3 receiver for the Buffaloes in 2010 behind Scotty McKnight and Markques Simas, but he should have the chance to a key play-maker at the inside Z position. Clemons was a top 10 receiver coming out of high school in 2007.
His potential never really materialized at Michigan, but he's a big, physical and talented wide out that should be a lot better than he's been to this point in his career. He can certainly do better than 12 career catches in two seasons.
9. TE Joseph Fauria, UCLA (From Notre Dame)
UCLA's situation at wide receiver might be pretty good, but they didn't really have a solid tight end to include in the passing game. That's before Joseph Fauria came into the mix. At 6'7" and 250 lbs, he's the complete package at the position and can step in immediately as an option in the passing game and as a blocker.
He was a Four-Star prospect coming out of high school in the Los Angeles area and maybe all it will take for him to live up to the hype is a trip back home.
8. RB Lennon Creer, Louisiana Tech (from Tennessee)
Harry How/Getty Images
Lennon Creer was a top 10 running back coming out of high school and actually performed fairly well when he was given the chance to play at Tennessee. He averaged over five yards per carry in his two seasons with the Volunteers, but it was obvious at the time that he wouldn't be the No. 1 back.
Now that he's at Louisiana Tech, he should be in line for way more carries and has a very good shot at being the featured back. Of course he needs to beat out Tyrone Duplessis to do that, but the thinking here is he will.
7. RB Sam McGuffie, Rice (from Michigan)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
You may remember Sam McGuffie coming out of high school as a top 10 running back from the 2008 class. He didn't live up to the hype, but performed decently as a freshman rushing for 486 yards and three touchdowns. Now that he's off to Rice he should be ready to do a lot more damage.
This team could really use help in the backfield and it wouldn't be surprising at all if he emerged as the top offensive weapon in their arsenal.
6. DT Willie Mobley, Arizona (From Ohio State)
Mobley was one of the top defensive lineman from the 2007 recruiting class, but trouble with the coaching staff and academics kept him from realizing his potential at Ohio State. Now that he's at Arizona, who are down seven starters on defense from last season, Mobley is expected to be a key contributor.
He very well might be the top defensive player on the team and has a great opportunity to make a lot of noise this fall.
5. QB Chris Harper, Kansas State (from Oregon)
Chris Harper is a tremendous athlete with the potential to be successful as a running back or receiver if he isn't able to get into the fold at quarterback. He wasn't given much of an opportunity at Oregon, but this dual-threat quarterback is the perfect type of player for Kansas State.
He's a dangerous dual-threat passer who fits the mold of success the Wildcats have had at the position over the years.
4. WR Vidal Hazelton, Cincinnati (from USC)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Vidal Hazelton got lost in the shuffle at USC after being ranked as the No. 1 receiver in the country back in 2006. This former Five-Star recruit will have the chance to prove his growing collection of doubters wrong in his last year of college eligibility.
With Mardy Gilyard gone, Hazelton should be in line to be the primary target of new starting quarterback Zach Collaros. He might end up being the top transfer player in the country in 2010.
2. QB Steven Threet, Arizona State (from Michigan)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Steven Threet was one of the top quarterbacks of the 2007 recruiting class, but hasn't been able to find his place on the football field. He originally signed with Georgia Tech and then transferred to Michigan before deciding he wasn't a good fit with the Wolverines and headed to Arizona State.
The Sun Devils should have a lot of success in 2010, partially due to their haul of transfer players that will be taking the field this season. Threet hasn't quite earned the starting spot yet, but it's only a matter of time before he takes it from Brock Osweiler.
3. CB Phelon Jones, Alabama (From LSU)
The timing is perfect for Phelon Jones now that Javier Arenas and Kareem Jackson are off to the NFL. They were the starting cornerbacks for the Crimson Tide a year ago and while there will be tough competition to replace them, Jones is talented enough to step in and be a key contributor.
He was a Four-Star prospect coming out of high school and has a ton of talent. If not for the ridiculous depth of LSU's secondary, he would have already been a name most people are familiar with.
1. QB Robert Marve, Purdue (from Miami)
Doug Benc/Getty Images
Robert Marve's college experience to this point is one that's cast a shadow over his maturity and willingness to listen to his coaches. After coming to Miami as a top 10 quarterback from the 2007 class, he was forced to red-shirt his freshman season after getting injured in a serious car accident.
Then he bumped heads with the coaching staff, eventually deciding to call it quits and leave town. He'll be the starting quarterback at Purdue next season and should be in line for a ton of success as long as he can stay focused on the task at hand.