The Tennessee Volunteers landed a transfer portal commitment on Wednesday afternoon from Austin Lewis, he announced on Twitter. The 6-foot-6, 270-pound defensive end played four games at East Tennessee State in 2021. Lewis suited up for the Liberty Flames from 2018 to 2020, before transferring to ETSU ahead of the 2021 campaign.
He is transferring to the Volunteers as a preferred walk-on.
Coming out of high school, he played for David Crockett High School in Jonesborough, Tennessee. Lewis boasted offers from: Appalachian State, Cincinnati, Colorado State, FAU, Kansas State, Liberty, UMass, Memphis, Navy, and UCF before settling on the Flames.
The Volunteers will kick off their 2022 campaign against Ball State in Neyland Stadium on Sept. 1. The Vols went 7-6 overall during Josh Heupel’s first season as head coach last year.
For updates on where all the different college football prospects across America are headed this offseason, keep it locked to the 2022 On3 Transfer Portal Wire.
More on the NCAA Transfer Portal
The NCAA Transfer Portal, which covers every NCAA sport at the Division I, II and III levels, is a private database with names of student-athletes who wish to transfer. It is not accessible to the public.
The process of entering the portal is done through a school’s compliance office. Once a player provides written notification of an intent to transfer, the office enters the player’s name in the database and everything is off and running. The compliance office has 48 hours to comply with the player’s request and that request cannot be refused.
Once a player’s name shows up in the portal, other schools can contact the player. Players can change their minds at any point and withdraw from the portal. However, once a player enters the portal, the current scholarship no longer has to be honored. In other words, if a player enters the portal but decides to stay, the school is not obligated to provide a scholarship anymore.
The database is a normal database, sortable by a variety of topics, including (of course) sport and name. A player’s individual entry includes basic details such as contact info, whether the player was on scholarship and whether the player is transferring as a graduate student.
A player can ask that a “do not contact” tag be placed on the report. In those instances, the players don’t want to be contacted by schools unless they’ve initiated the communication.
The portal has been around since Oct. 15, 2018 and the new calendar cycle within the portal begins each August. For example, the 2021-22 cycle started Aug. 1. During the 2020-21 cycle, 2,626 FBS football players entered the transfer portal (including walk-ons). That comes after 1,681 entered during the 2019-20 cycle and 1,709 during the abbreviated 2018-19 cycle. In comparison, 1,833 Division I basketball players entered the portal during the 2020-21 cycle after totals of 1,020 in 2019-20 and 1,063 in 2018-19.