The transfer portal took more from the Sun Belt than it gave in 2022.The conference lost more players like wide receiver Corey Rucker than it gained, a not-atypical trend for Group of Five teams in the current landscape of college football. Bigger programs pilfered Louisiana in particular with multiple Rajin’ Cajuns landing in Power Five conferences.
However, a few notable incoming transfers stand out for the Sun Belt, including multiple at the quarterback position.
Kyle Vantrease, QB, Georgia Southern
A multiyear starter from Buffalo, Kyle Vantrease decided to use his extra year of collegiate eligibility playing for Georgia Southern and new head coach Clay Helton. Without the stabilizing presence of head coach Lance Leipold in Buffalo, Vantrease took a step back in 2021, tossing a career-worst six picks against just eight touchdowns (he threw for seven scores in the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign). A change of scenery doesn’t guarantee that correct that trend, but he walks into the Sun Belt as one of the most experienced players at any position.
Sam Pinckney, WR, Coastal Carolina
Going from one Sun Belt school to another, wideout Sam Pinckney should have a chance to thrive at Coastal Carolina. The Chanticleers return quarterback Grayson McCall, the two-time Sun Belt Player of the Year, giving Pinckney the chance to put up bigger numbers than at his first stop. Coastal should also have more targets to go around with tight end Isaiah Likely now a member of the Baltimore Ravens.
Layne Hatcher, QB, Texas State
Like Vantrease, Laynce Hatcher arrives at his new program with multiple seasons as a starter under his belt. And similar to Pinckney, Hatcher already has familiarity with the Sun Belt. Whether he can lift a moribund Texas State program out of the doldrums remains unclear, though head coach Jack Spavital’s job probably hinges on the transfer QB doing so.
Key Sun Belt transfers projected to start Week 1
Jahmar Brown, LB/S, Coastal Carolina (South Carolina)
Carl Glass Jr., LB, Louisiana-Monroe (Harding)
Cruz Temple, LB, Arkansas State (East Carolina)