Alabama football: 2023 transfer portal tracker 2.0

On3 imageby:Clint Lamb01/17/23


Left: Justin Ford, Getty Images / Right: UA Athletics

Now that the 2023 college football season is over, we’re seeing things in full swing with the transfer portal. Every day, guys are going in and guys are coming out. Of course, that includes several Alabama players, including a few who have seen significant action in their careers.

As things sit, there are 17 former members of the Crimson Tide who have entered the transfer portal. That includes 13 on offense, three on defense and one specialist. Only 14 of them were on scholarship, but one of the three others was valued depth as a specialist.

To keep you up to date with who all Alabama’s losing, we’ve put together an easy to follow tracker. This will be updated periodically as we learn more about who is entering and where they’re going, so expect quick reactions to both pieces of news.

To keep up with the latest players on the move, check out On3’s Transfer Portal wire

LB Demouy Kennedy

On3 HS ranking (2020): 4-star / No. 38 overall / No. 9 LB

Date announced: Jan. 17, 2023

New school: Colorado Buffaloes

Commitment date: Feb. 1, 2023

Story: Alabama LB Demouy Kennedy enters NCAA transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Kennedy choosing Colorado: Deion Sanders is trying to create a new culture in Boulder, and the addition of Kennedy could go a long way in helping to build that culture. As promised, the Hall of Famer is bringing in a lot of competition, which includes more at linebacker than just adding Kennedy.

The Buffs also inked Jeremiah Brown (Jackson State) and Vonta Bentley (Clemson). They also signed three stars Morgan Pearson, Victory Johnson and Kofi Taylor-Barrocks. Still, Kennedy has a clear path to immediate playing time due to the departures of the top three inside linebackers, including the team’s leading tackler — Josh Chandler-Semedo (100 tackles).

Expect Kennedy to start.

Quick thoughts on Kennedy entering the portal: This decision makes sense. As I pointed out in a piece back in January, Alabama has seven other outside linebackers who were once rated as a five-star recruit by at least one of the four major recruiting services. That includes three just from the 2023 cycle alone.

Kennedy has the ability to play inside or outside linebacker. Plus, he’s a good player on special teams. Unfortunately, he’s also coming off a season-ending knee injury that occured in early October. Hopefully, he’ll still be able to find his way onto another roster. During his time at Alabama, Kennedy proved to be a team player.

He was even willing to switch over to running back in 2021 following a slew of injuries at the position. The senior finished that season with only 16 yards on seven carries, but he provided a body when one was needed. He also had eight tackles during his three seasons in Tuscaloosa, most of which came on special teams.

OT Damieon George

On3 HS ranking (2020): 4-star / No. 336 overall / No. 35 OT

Date announced: Nov. 28, 2022

New school: Florida Gators

Commitment date: Jan. 16, 2023

Story: Alabama’s Damieon George plans to enter transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Georgia choosing Florida: George is sticking in the SEC, but now he’s heading over to the East to join Billy Napier at Florida. There are clear limitations for George, especially in pass protection, which makes us wonder whether he’ll play guard or right tackle in Gainesville. If I had to guess, he’ll start off as a tackle, but we’ll see.

Unfortunately for George, his chances at a starting job took a hit when the Gators also added former Kentucky offensive lineman Kiyaunta Goodwin. Goodwin was the No. 55 overall player and No. 6 offensive tackle during the 2022 recruiting cycle. With his 6-foot-8 length, that makes him potential competition for George at right tackle.

Quick thoughts on George entering the portal: At one time, George was considered one of Alabama’s most promising young offensive linemen. In 2021, he saw 268 snaps at right tackle while playing in a total of 12 games, three of which were starts. Unfortunately, struggles in pass protection, especially in the Iron Bowl, led to his benching, and we didn’t see him again that season.

The 6-foot-6, 333-pound mauler moved inside to guard last spring and ran with the first-team offense while starting right guard Emil Ekiyor Jr. was out, but that didn’t translate to playing time in the fall. He only saw action in the first two games, and we hadn’t seen him on offense since the 20 snaps he played against Utah State back in the season opener.

George is considering Auburn, Florida and others.

WR Tyler Harrell

On3 HS ranking (2018): 3-star / No. 862 overall / No. 143 WR

Date announced: Jan. 14, 2023

New school: TBD

Commitment date: TBD

Story: Alabama WR Tyler Harrell enters NCAA transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Harrell entering the portal: Honestly, I see both sides of Harrell’s decision to enter the portal. On one hand, where did he see himself fitting into the rotation in 2023? Yes, Alabama has lost several other receivers to the transfer portal, but there’s still a lot of returning talent.

Right now, I see six who are almost a lock for playing time.

Ja’Corey Brooks and Jermaine Burton (assuming he returns) are the two veterans of the group. But three true freshmen — Isaiah Bond, Kobe Prentice and Kendrick Law — all got significant playing time in Year 1. That’s five guys. Plus, top JUCO talent Malik Benson should be an immediate impact player.

I would’ve loved to have seen what Harrell could’ve done had he not gotten hurt, but he did.

That created opportunities for others, and those guys took advantage. But with that being said, the other reported issue was the playbook and offensive system. Those things take time for almost everyone, but now Harrell will have to go through that process again at another school. Hopefully, he’ll be able to stay healthy.

WR Christian Leary

On3 HS ranking (2021): 4-star / No. 59 overall / No. 8 WR

Date announced: Nov. 30, 2022

New school: Georgia Tech (flipped from UCF)

Commitment date: Jan. 8, 2022

Story: Alabama WR becomes next Tide player to enter portal

Quick thoughts on Leary choosing Georgia Tech: Well, Gus Malzahn and UCF didn’t land the hometown product after all. Only three weeks after announcing his decision to join the Knights, Leary had a change of heart and chose to join the Yellow Jackets, who are not being led by former Alabama offensive line coach Brent Key.

With less than 10 combined passing touchdowns from Georgia Tech’s offense this past season, we’re left wondering how much things will improve in 2023. Two of the team’s quarterbacks, including starter Jeff Sims, elected to leave Atlanta via the transfer portal. There’s still Zach Pyron though.

UCF with another former Alabama receiver, Javon Baker, felt like a better destination.

Baker led the Kights in receiving yards (796) while also putting up 56 catches and five touchdowns. He also would’ve joined former Auburn receiver Kobe Hudson to give UCF a nice trio of weapons for former Ole Miss quarterback John Rhys Plumlee (yeah, that would’ve been a lot of former SEC talent).

Maybe Leary believes in where Key is taking Tech’s program though.

Quick thoughts on Leary entering the portal: Leary is a former top-10 receiver from the 2021 recruiting cycle. As a freshman, the Orlando (Fla.) Edgewater product moved to running back due to a slew of injuries Alabama suffered at the position. He totaled 26 yards (22 rushing, 4 receiving) and a touchdown on five touches that season.

After moving back to receiver and a big A-Day performance (five catches, 106 yards) in the spring, fans were hoping for bigger contributions in 2022, but it never came to fruition. Leary only saw 45 snaps on offense in 10 games this season. That led to only one catch for six yards.

RB Trey Sanders

On3 HS ranking (2019): 5-star / No. 10 overall / No. 1 RB

Date announced: Nov. 22, 2022

New school: TCU Horned Frogs

Commitment date: Jan. 5, 2022

Story: Alabama senior RB Trey Sanders enters transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Sanders choosing TCU: The Horned Frogs have now added their third former Alabama player out the transfer portal. First, it was wide receiver JoJo Earle. Then, offensive tackle Tommy Brockermeyer decided to join him. Now, Sanders makes No. 3 for coach Sonny Dykes and company.

It’s a good landing spot for him too. Yes, TCU just got boat raced in the national title game against Georgia, but this is still a good program. Plus, the former five-star talent will have an opportunity to earn a bigger role than what he got in Tuscaloosa this season.

Starting running back Kendre Miller was a junior who ran for 1,399 yards and 17 touchdowns. It’s possible that he could turn pro. But even if he doesn’t, backup Emari Demercado (107 carries, 622 yards, six touchdowns) is a super senior who has to move on. Hopefully, Sanders earns some much-deserved playing time.

Quick thoughts on Sanders entering the portal: Sanders has had an unfortunate story, but it’s also an inspiring one. The former top running back recruit from 2019 was never able to regain his previous form after his car accident back in 2020, but he has never stopped fighting to get back to full strength.

Sanders performed when Alabama needed him most too. In 2021, he totaled 396 yards and two touchdowns after the Crimson Tide had a slew of injuries at the position. Unfortunately,, he only had 14 carries, 80 yards and a touchdown to go with two catches for 13 yards with everyone healthy this season.

His departure isn’t surprising.

OL Amari Kight

On3 HS ranking (2019): 4-star / No. 72 overall / No. 10 OT

Date announced: Dec. 5, 2022

New school: UCF Knights

Commitment date: Dec. 23, 2022

Story: Alabama loses backup OT Amari Kight to transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Kight choosing UCF: A former Alabama player is taking his talents down to Orlando, after all. Last offseason, wide receiver Javon Baker eventually found his way there. That worked out for him. Christian Leary was supposed to be joining him, but he changed his mind and chose Georgia Tech.

Kight is one guy the Crimson Tide coaching staff wanted to keep around to compete in the spring, but unfortunately, he wanted to start fresh elsewhere. This was a huge get for the Knights. Both of their starting tackles this season, Ryan Swoboda and Tylan Grable, are former transfers who won’t be returning next season. That presents Kight with a big opportunity to seize a starting role.

Quick thoughts on Kight entering the portal: Outside of Earle, I’m most surprised to see Kight in the portal. With starting left tackle Tyler Steen leaving, I thought the Alabaster (Ala.) Thompson product would have a chance to compete for a job in the spring. I bet the staff was disappointed with this news as well.

Kight actually graded out as Alabama’s second-highest-rated player (88.9 overall), according to Pro Football Focus. But to be fair, that was only on 83 snaps, so it’s not enough of a sample size. In his four seasons in Tuscaloosa, he played 164 snaps on offense with zero starts.

To keep up with the latest players on the move, check out On3’s Transfer Portal wire

OL Tommy Brockermeyer

On3 HS ranking (2021): 5-star / No. 6 overall / No. 2 OT

Date announced: Dec. 5, 2022

New school: TCU Horned Frogs

Commitment date: Dec. 20, 2022

Story: Former five-star OL Tommy Brockermeyer transferring

Quick thoughts on Brockermeyer choosing TCU: Brockermeyer became the second Alabama player to choose TCU after JoJo Earle did the same back in mid-December. Like Earle, I’m sure a lot of this decision came down to location, as Brockermeyer also hails from the state of Texas. Plus, TCU feels like an up-and-coming program.

I don’t think the former five-star tackle will have as easy of a path to playing time, however.

Both of the team’s starting tackles are redshirt juniors in Brandon Coleman and Andrew Coker. They’ve both performed pretty well, too. Still, Brockermeyer should have at least three more seasons of eligibility, depending on if his injury in 2021 makes him eligible for a medical redshirt. There should be plenty of time for him get on the field.

Quick thoughts on Brockermeyer entering the portal: A lot of fans were probably disappointed to learn that Brockermeyer entered the transfer portal. Considering he was once a five-star and top-10 player in the 2021 recruiting class, I can understand any concerns or frustrations.

Still, this news isn’t surprising.

Brockermeyer has dealt with a couple of injuries during his time in Tuscaloosa, and he hadn’t taken any significant steps towards moving up the depth chart. This is a guy who wants to play sooner rather than later, and he’ll likely get that opportunity at his next stop.

After redshirting in 2021, Brockermeyer only played 19 snaps this season. That includes nine against UL-Monroe and 10 against Austin Peay. Even with the losses of Tyler Steen and now Amari Kight, I’m still not sure Brockermeyer would’ve been in the competition to start at tackle in the spring.

WR Aaron Anderson

On3 HS ranking (2022): 4-star / No. 36 overall / No. 4 WR

Date announced: Dec. 12, 2022

New school: LSU Tigers

Commitment date: Dec. 18, 2022

Story: Alabama freshman WR Aaron Anderson enters transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Anderson choosing LSU: I’ll take “Things We Saw Coming” for $200, Alex.

In all seriousness, this one shouldn’t surprise Alabama fans at all. Anderson is a New Orleans native who many felt would go to LSU the first time around. He was even committed at one point, but impact of former coach Ed Orgeron getting fired tipped things in favor of the Tide.

Now, the former top-40 recruit is heading home.

The Tigers will have a returning quarterback next season in Jayden Daniels. Plus, wide receiver Kayshon Boutte changed his mind and will entere the NFL draft. Malik Nabers, Brian Thomas Jr. and 2022 freshman tight end Mason Taylor are all great pieces, but there’s more room for Anderson to emerge.

Sure, he may have a difficult time getting on the field in Baton Rouge, but I still love his talent. I wouldn’t be shocked if he found his way into the rotation. He might’ve done the same in Tuscaloosa this season had it not been for a preseason injury that slowed his development.

Quick thoughts on Anderson entering the portal: In some ways, Anderson was a surprising addition to the transfer portal. I thought he was a fantastic get last year from down in Louisiana, but unfortunately, an injury prevented him from getting on the field for Alabama in Year 1.

Several of his fellow 2022 wide receiver signees, including Isaiah Bond, Kobe Prentice and Kendrick Law, all saw the field this season. That could be part of why Anderson wanted to take his talents elsewhere. That trio, along with Jermaine Burton, Ja’Corey Brooks and incoming JUCO receiver Malik Benson, has the top of Alabama’s depth chart crowded.

I remain a big fan and could see him continuing to play elsewhere in the SEC.

OL Javion Cohen

On3 HS ranking (2020): 4-star / No. 291 overall / No. 28 OT

Date announced: Dec. 4, 2022

New school: Miami Hurricanes

Commitment date: Dec. 18, 2022

Story: Alabama starting OG Javion Cohen to enter transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Cohen choosing Miami: Miami needs all the help it can get on offense. Hurricanes head coach Mario Cristobal is doing fantastic work on the recruiting trail, but the on-field product hasn’t been very good. A lot of the struggles on offense can be attributed to poor offensive line play though.

Cohen took an official visit to South Beach back in December, and now, he’ll be taking his talents down there permanently.

One of the team’s starting tackles, Zion Nelson, missed this past season with an injury. There are several other guys with starting experience too, including John Campbell, Anez Cooper, Jalen Rivers and Jakai Clark. Plus, there are two five-star tackle offensive line signees in Francis Mauigoa and Samson Okunlola.

That’s a lot of competition for Cohen, but the unit hasn’t been great this year. I’m guessing he’ll start.

Quick thoughts on Cohen entering the portal: At first glance, Cohen’s departure might come as a shock to some fans. This is a guy who’s started 25 games over the past two seasons with 1,624 career snaps in 31 contests played.

Those numbers would’ve made him the most experienced offensive lineman returning next year. Instead, he’ll look to finish his career elsewhere. His departure, on top of losing Tyler Steen, Darrian Dalcourt, Emil Ekiyor Jr. and Amari Kight, means there will be a lot of new faces included on the two-deep come 2023.

I will add that Alabama’s coaching staff expected this decision, however.

CB Khyree Jackson

On3 JUCO ranking (2021): 4-star / No. 5 overall / No. 2 CB

Date announced: Nov. 23, 2022

New school: Oregon Ducks

Commitment date: Dec. 18, 2022

Story: Alabama CB Khyree Jackson enters NCAA transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Jackson choosing Oregon: It looks like Jackson will be reuniting with former Alabama teammate Traeshon Holden in Eugene. After failing to get on the field with any sort of consistency in Tuscaloosa, the defensive back will look to bolster an Oregon pass defense ranking No. 102 nationally this season.

The Ducks are losing star cornerback Christian Gonzalez early to the NFL. He’s projected to be a first-round draft pick. That, on top of losing veteran safety Bennett Williams, leaves an already struggling secondary even more depleted with depth and talent. That’s why Jackson was such a priority. He’ll have an opportunity to earn immediate playing time.

Quick thoughts on Jackson entereing the portal: Jackson is an interesting loss.

On one hand, he does have experience, both at Alabama and on the JUCO level. He’s played in 21 games during his two years in Tuscaloosa while getting two starts and playing 197 snaps on defense. At 6-3, 198 pounds, he’s a long, physical defensive back, but he has really struggled to carry receivers vertically.

With Eli Ricks entering the NFL draft, Alabama will now need to replace two of the top four cornerbacks on the roster. The good news is that they recruited the position well and have some intriguing options (such as Earl Little Jr.) already available

WR JoJo Earle

On3 HS ranking (2021): 4-star / No. 44 overall / No. 6 WR

Date announced: Dec. 5, 2022

New school: TCU Horned Frogs

Commitment date: Dec. 17, 2022

Story: Alabama WR JoJo Earle next contributor to enter portal

Quick thoughts on Earle choosing TCU: Earle is leaving one top-25 passing offense in Tuscaloosa for another one in Fort Worth. The former top-50 recruit played high school football in Aledo (Tex.) too, and that’s only about 20 minutes outside of Fort Worth. I guess that makes sense.

Heisman finalist quarterback Max Duggan won’t return for a fifth and final season though.

With the Horned Frogs getting to the College Football Playoff and even playing in a national chamipnship this season, I can see where it’d be an appealing destination for Earle. Then throw in the top six pass-catchers being either a junior or senior, and now you can understand why this was always his most likely destination.

Quick thoughts on Earle entering the portal: Of all of Alabama’s losses to the portal, this one might be one of the most shocking. There are reasons behind everything though, and we should note that the Crimson Tide didn’t actively try and recruit Earle out of the portal. That should probably tell us something.

Earle struggled with injuries throughout his two years in Tuscaloosa. There were flashes of a dynamic playmaker underneath, but the former top 50 recruit never fully put it together. With him primarily playing in the slot, it’ll be interesting to see who all Alabama uses there in 2023. In 18 games, Earle had 24 catches for 303 yards and two scores.

P Jack Martin

On3 HS ranking (2021): N/A

Date announced: Oct. 31, 2022

New school: Houston Cougars

Commitment date: Dec. 14, 2022

Story: Alabama loses specialist Jack Martin to transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Martin choosing Houston: Considering Houston already has punter Laine Wilkins on the roster, I’m guessing Martin will be handling kicking duties for the Cougars. Wilkins averaged an impressive 44.6 yards on 37 punts last season and has also averaged 42.5 yards in his three-year career.

I’m not sure about how things look at place kicker, but one of the team’s options, Bubba Baxa, was a senior who only converted 9-of-14 attempts (64.3%). The Cougars do still have Kyle Ramsey though, so maybe Martin will continue to provide depth at both. Either way, it’s another fresh start for the Mobile (Ala.) native.

Quick thoughts on Martin entering the portal: Martin has the ability to punt and kick, and he’s been valuable depth at both spots throughout his two-year stint in Tuscaloosa. For his Alabama career, the former Troy transfer appeared in six games while only attempting one field goal (made from 29 yards out). He also kicked off 10 times.

DL Braylen Ingraham

On3 HS ranking (2019): 4-star / No. 158 overall / No. 22 DL

Date announced: Sept. 22, 2022

New school: Syracuse Orange

Commitment date: Dec. 12, 2022

Story: Alabama DL Braylen Ingraham enters transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Ingraham choosing Syracuse: For the first month and a half of the regular season, Syracuse was one of college football’s most surprising teams. The Orange started the year 6-0 en route to a top-25 ranking, but things quickly fell apart after playing three top-25 teams in a four-week period.

After the six-game winning streak, Syracuse went on to lose six of their last seven games, including a 28-20 loss to Minnesota in the Bad Boy Mowers Pinstripe Bowl. The Orange run a 3-3-5 system — or at least they did. Now former defensive coordinator Tony White, who was responsible for the huge turnaround on defense, is now heading to Nebraska.

Still, this program needs more talent up front to go alongside star defensive lineman Caleb Okechukwu, who’s returning for a sixth season, and others. Ingraham wasn’t able to find his way to the field in Tuscaloosa, but a fresh start could do him some good. Syracuse is a nice landing spot for him.

Quick thoughts on Ingraham entering the portal: Ingraham hasn’t been with the team in quite some time. Alabama has already gotten used to life without the defensive lineman, but I will be curious to see where he ends up. At 6-foot-4, 298 pounds, he’s got some inside-out ability. He only played 26 snaps in Tuscaloosa though.

WR Traeshon Holden

On3 HS ranking (2020): 4-star / No. 193 overall / No. 36 WR

Date entered: Nov. 30, 2022

New school: Oregon Ducks

Commitment date: Dec. 11, 2022

Story: Traeshon Holden now second Alabama WR to enter portal

Quick thoughts on Holden choosing Oregon: Bo Nix returning to Oregon for one more season is a big deal for Holden. The former Auburn quarterback broke out this year, completing 71.9% of his passes for 3,593 yards, 29 touchdowns and only seven interceptions. Nix added 510 yards and 14 scores on the ground while also adding another touchdown as a receiver.

Despite all of Nix’s success, none of Oregon’s receivers posted more than 900 yards. The ball was spread around quite a bit, which means there might be room for Holden to carve out some sort of role. Plus, he should have two years of eligibility remaining due to the extra year of eligibility in 2020.

Quick thoughts on Holden entering the portal: Holden has been a steady target for Bryce Young ever since the former five-star quarterback took over in 2021. Over the past two seasons, he’s totaled 46 receptions for 570 yards and seven touchdowns. Of those totals, 21 catches for 331 yards and six scores came in 2022.

Holden has appeared in 24 games since the start of the 2021 season. At 6-foot-3, 214 pounds, the junior has also been the biggest wide receiver on Alabama’s roster for each of the last two years. With his size and experience, I believe the veteran pass-catcher will land on his feet somewhere.

OL Tanner Bowles

On3 HS ranking (2019): 4-star / No. 337 overall / No. 34 OT

Date announced: Nov. 30, 2022

New school: Kentucky Wildcats

Commitment date: Dec. 8, 2022

Story: Alabama OL Tanner Bowles entering transfer portal

Quick thoughts on Bowles choosing Kentucky: I like that Bowles is staying in the SEC. I’m not sure he’ll be a starter for the Wildcats, but with his positional flexibility, he should have every opportunity. Kentucky’s offensive line struggled after losing position coach Eric Wolford to Alabama. So hopefully, Bowles will be able to help out somewhere.

The Will LevisChris Rodriguez backfield duo is heading to the NFL, but the Wildcats did add former NC State quarterback Devin Leary to replace Levis.

Quick thoughts on Bowles entering the portal: Bowles played in every game this season except the Sugar Bowl (he was in the portal), but the fourth-year junior only saw 40 snaps on offense. Those snaps came against Utah State (6), UL-Monroe (14), Vanderbilt (10) and Austin Peay (10). For his career, he’s only played 86 snaps.

Bowles has the versatility to play every position along the offensive line. As a former four-star recruit with plenty of experience in an elite program such as Alabama, I’d expect him to have some sort of market, even if it isn’t in the SEC or even Power Five. He’s talented enough to help someone.

Walk-ons entering transfer portal

WR Jacoby Boykins; RB Elijah Crockett

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