Nebraska redshirt freshman quarterback Luke McCaffrey officially enters the transfer portal after two seasons with the Cornhuskers
Since the news of McCaffrey’s decision to enter the transfer portal comes just one day after the start of the spring semester at Nebraska, the quarterback will remain on full scholarship and stipend through the end of the academic year.
The Colorado native joins his older brother, Dylan McCaffrey, who opted to enter the transfer portal after three seasons at Michigan.
In seven games, including two starts last season, the Nebraska quarterback averaged 5.6 yards per carry and scored three touchdowns on the ground, and split time under center with Adrian Martinez, who had more passing attempts in 2020.
Despite being the second throwing option at quarterback for head coach Scott Frost last season, McCaffrey finished the year 48-of-76 for 466 yards, with one touchdown pass and six interceptions.
McCaffrey initially gave Frost and the Nebraska football program the impression that he was going to be a COVID opt-out but still remain a member of the team. The redshirt freshman quickly switched gears and informed the university that he intended on entering the transfer portal.
Frost and the Nebraska football program will be tasked to fill one of their last two remaining spots of their 2021 recruiting class for a quarterback to replace the departing McCaffrey.
For McCaffrey, the schools that will be targeting the former Cornhusker quarterback will be endless. Here are five schools that should target the dual-threat quarterback.
1. Memphis Tigers
The Memphis Tigers will be in search of a new gunslinger for the 2021 season to replace senior quarterback Brady White. The Santa Clarita, Calif., native had a phenomenal year for the AAC program in 2020, finishing fifth in the nation with 31 touchdown passes and sixth in passing yards (3,380).
Memphis hit the lottery when they successfully landed White from Arizona State in 2018. Second-year head coach Ryan Silverfield can take a chance on another transfer in McCaffrey to come in and fight for the starting nod in 2021.
2. BYU Cougars
Similarly to Memphis, the BYU Cougars will need to find a replacement for one of the best quarterbacks in the nation last year, Zach Wilson, who decided to enter the NFL Draft.
Wilson had a remarkable junior season for the Cougars in 2020, completing 247-of-336 passes (73.5 completion %) for 3,692 yards. The potential first-round draft pick finished third in the nation with 33 touchdown passes and was only picked off three times in 12 games.
3. SMU Mustangs
Fifth-year quarterback Shane Buechele had quite the rollercoaster collegiate football career, finishing his two-year tenure at SMU before playing three seasons with the Texas Longhorns. Buechele’s final year as a collegiate quarterback ended on a high note, as he finished with 23 touchdown passes and 3,095 yards.
SMU has yet to land a quarterback commitment for the 2021 season, leaving the door wide open for head coach Dana Holgorsen to land a transfer signal-caller for the 2021 season.
4. Florida Gators
The Dan Mullen-led Florida Gators will need to replace senior quarterback Kyle Trask, who is leaving for the NFL Draft after three seasons in Gainesville. The Heisman candidate completed 301-of-437 passes, firing 43 touchdowns and eight interceptions in 12 games last season.
McCaffrey would fight for the starting nod at quarterback with dual-threat Emory Jones, who finished the 2020 season with 221 passing yards, 217 rushing yards, and two throwing and rushing touchdowns each.
5. Clemson Tigers
The extreme longshot out of these potential targets for McCaffrey would be the ACC-champion Clemson Tigers. Even though Dabo Swinney has sophomore quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei to take over as his starting quarterback in 2021, it wouldn’t be a bad idea for Swinney to look at the transfer portal for a safety net. Then again, that likely deters McCaffrey from considering Clemson — if they were even interested — because his path to a starting job is basically nil.