This offseason, the college football world has seen players from around the country rush into the transfer portal in search of greener pastures elsewhere. However, many key figures in the sport, including high-profile head coaches like Deion Sanders and Dabo Swinney, have started to express their concerns about the portal.
Just recently, an anonymous coach gave credence to those worries when he admitted that there's been widespread tampering in college football when it comes to going after transfers.
In an interview with Brandon Marcello of 247Sports, an anonymous FBS head coach explained that just about all college football programs have engaged in tampering when it comes to the portal. He admitted that schools actively recruit in secret before players exit their original programs and put their name in the transfer pool.
Without much regulation from the NCAA, little has been done to temper the early interference.
“Everybody is tampering. We all do it,” the anonymous coach said, per Marcello. “At this point it’s like going 65 mph in a 55. What are you going to do with it? But there need to be parameters. NFL free agency starts and ends on certain dates, and we need to do that with the portal. That’s No. 1. They have to protect the kids from themselves and make it fair for our rosters because it’s impossible the way it is set up today.”
It's difficult to figure out what the solution is when it comes to fixing the transfer portal. Some coaches suggested implementing a shorter "window" when players could declare their intention to transfer.
"If we can create a better window where kids have a few months to get in the portal and make a decision it would benefit both coaches and players," a Group of Five assistant coach said, per Marcello. "It would give kids and coaching staffs across the country a better feel for the number of spots available as well as who is available."
Whatever reforms the transfer portal needs should come soon rather than later. Since August of 2021, over 1,200 student-athletes from the FBS level in college football have entered into the NCAA transfer portal, according to Saturday Tradition.
The transfer portal has become a staple in college football and will only continue to be an integral part of the sport. If the NCAA wants to make things as fair as possible, changes will need to be made in the near future.