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Colorado, Huskies top Jon Wilner's first Pac-12 transfer portal power rankings

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Pac-12 teams have lost more than 100 players through the transfer portal since it opened Dec. 21. 5. This figure will increase – and possibly significantly – before closing time on January 1st. 18.

The conference benefited immensely from the dizzying amount of player movement last winter, especially with the influx of quarterbacks.

Whether the collective impact will be negative or positive this time around won’t be clear until the 2023 season, but the Hotline has no interest in reserving judgment for nine months.

Where’s the fun in that?

Welcome to our first offseason power ratings transfer portal. We’ll come back to the review below when the portal closes next month, and then again when it opens (for two weeks) in early May.

1. Colorado

Like last year, the Buffaloes lost a load of players to the gate. Unlike last year, the level of departures is limited. Unlike last year, they are the biggest winners in the conference so far. Quarterback Shedeur Sanders arrives from Jackson State to lead the offense for his father, while cornerback Travis Hunter – the former No. 1. 1 rated rookie in the country – provides CU with a talent of elite on the back line. Come back in another month. The Buffaloes aren’t nearly done.


The momentum continues for coach Kalen DeBoer’s program with a slew of impact newcomers coming through the portal en route to Montlake. Arizona State running back Daniyel Ngata and Michigan State wide receiver Germie Bernard bolster the lineup of playmakers around quarterback Michael Penix. Another former Sun Devil, Joe Moore, adds needed depth to the top rusher. So far, none of the Huskies’ top contributors (or backup quarterbacks) have entered the portal.


The Bruins have worked the transfer market expertly for years — often with higher-level players — and this cycle is producing more of the same. Quarterback Collin Schlee (Kent State) and linebacker Oluwafemi Oladejo (Cal) are proven products and are keeping tabs on tight end Moliki Matavao, who averaged 13 yards per catch for Oregon. The Bruins have avoided a major exodus thus far, making their net gain sizable.


The biggest (domestically) winner of the 2021-22 transfer cycle is set to benefit again, thanks in large part to… Arizona? That’s right. Receiver Dorian Singer, cornerback Christian Roland-Wallace and defensive lineman Kyon Barrs give the Trojans impact on players in positions that need it. They also landed all-conference punter Eddie Czaplicki from ASU. Meanwhile, attrition has been limited with linebacker Ralen Goforth (at Washington) perhaps the most important.

5. Oregon

The Ducks are currently playing quantity against. Quality of play: They lost a lot of players, including front line contributors. The number of arrivals is not as large but includes several gems. At the top of that list is wide receiver Traeshon Holden, who has six touchdowns for Alabama this season. The Ducks also landed offensive lineman Ajani Cornelius from Rhode Island. Make no mistake – it was coveted by a handful of top Power Five programs.


Our assessment of Utah’s Portal to Success begins and ends with the following premise: Players will be more productive for the Utes than they were at their previous school given Salt Lake City’s developmental history. With that, the Utes acquired two key defensive pieces: Levani Damuni, an all-conference linebacker (honorable mention) from Stanford, and Logan Fano, a point rusher from BYU. The level of attention so far is minimal.

7. State of Arizona

Unsurprisingly, the coaching change fueled a massive roster turnover at Tempe. The Sun Devils have lost several starters, including offensive linemen LaDarius Henderson (Michigan) and Ben Scott (Nebraska). But the influx of talent has been significant and includes two quarterbacks: Drew Pyne (Notre Dame) and Jacob Conover (BYU). Our guess: Many Arizona natives who have signed elsewhere in recent years will be interested in returning home to join Kenny Dillingham’s program.


If a conference program lost a higher percentage of its top talent to the portal, we don’t know. Singer, Roland-Wallace and Barrs all heading to USC is a triple whammy and will be hard to make up for no matter who the Wildcats shoot from the gate. Coach Jedd Fisch recently landed Oregon linebacker Justin Flowe, the No. 1 ranked inside linebacker in the nation two years ago. And more are on the way, but there’s still a lot of work to do.

9. Oregon State

It’s no secret to the portal math at Corvallis: once again, the Beavers have seen limited attrition and are well placed for 2023 in many positions; but OSU desperately needs a quarterback. And at this point, the Beavers haven’t found their man (at least not officially). Until coach Jonathan Smith finds a potential starter from the portal – we have no doubt he will – the Hotline plans to delay judging.

10. Cal

Unsurprisingly, the Bears were beaten up front with starting tackle Ben Coleman going to Arizona State. Losing linebacker Oladejo to UCLA is also a blow. (Quarterback Jack Plummer? Not so much.) In terms of arrivals, Cal nabbed Oregon tailback Byron Cardwell and Sergio Allen, a former four-star recruit who spent three years at Clemson. But the key pieces remain in place, so far: Tailback Jaydn Ott and receiver J. Michael Sturdivant have not entered the portal.

11. Washington State

Given that the transfer portal’s database at 247 Sports shows 15 starts and one addition for WSU since the Apple Cup, it’s safe to assume the Cougars are in net negative territory. Losses include linebacker Francisco Mauigoa (to Miami) and wide receiver De’Zhaun Stribling (to Oklahoma State). Some rebalancing will no doubt occur over the next month. But how much? And in what positions? Watch the offensive line.


Who’s not in the transfer gate after another terrible season, the departure of David Shaw and the hiring of Troy Taylor? As of this writing, Stanford has 17 outgoing players and no outgoing players, according to 247 Sports. No unit was hit harder than the offensive line, which lost two players to Michigan (Myles Hinton and Drake Nugent). To what extent will the university adjust its policy to allow Taylor to use the portal for immediate help?

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