Morgantown, West Virginia – To be fair, the transfer portal is an issue everywhere in college football. NCAA rules have made transferring very easy for student athletes and has very nearly created free agency in college sports.
With that said, the transfer portal is a major problem at West Virginia University right now. In this calendar year, West Virginia has lost 17 players to the transfer portal, which is the clear leader in the Big 12 Conference.
To compare, Baylor has had 1 player transfer, Iowa State has 5, Kansas has 9, Kansas State 4, Oklahoma 13, Oklahoma State 3, TCU 13, Texas 10, Texas Tech 7 and again, West Virginia with 17.
While Oklahoma and TCU also had a high number of transfers, West Virginia is clearly the outlier. Neal Brown has attempted to build a family, player-first atmosphere at West Virginia, so why is there so much attrition at WVU right now?
Lack of Playing Time
Brown has made it abundantly clear that he doesn’t particularly trust young players. He obviously values experience and time in the program above talented youth. Today’s player simply does not want to wait years to get playing time, particularly when the product on the field is performing at such a low level.
Imagine being the ultra-talented, four star wide receiver Kaden Prather, watching on the sidelines and not getting an opportunity to see meaningful playing time this season. Or imagine being Garrett Greene or Will “Goose” Crowder watching Jarret Doege make mistake after mistake, yet never get benched. It has to be an impossibly frustrating process.
West Virginia football is boring right now
There just isn’t much to be excited about within the West Virginia football program right now. The coaches are boring, the offense is boring and there’s simply nothing that differentiates West Virginia football from any other program in the country right now, other than the incredibly passionate fan base.
Young recruits want something to be excited about and right now, Neal Brown doesn’t really offer that. Brown has the top recruiting class in program history coming in next year so he’s clearly doing a great job at convincing players to come to Morgantown, but will he be able to keep them on campus once they’re here?