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Undervalued Transfer QBs
Undervalued Transfer QBs

Associated Press

January 25, 2023

The college football transfer portal is now closed until after Spring programs have completed. Player movement of non-draft eligible players could stay quiet until May 1st. 

Previously, I looked at a few transfer candidates that I thought would see a bump in value. Two of my predictions, Shedeur Sanders ($2.81, +54%), and Michael Pratt ($1.18, +15%), have gone up since that article! 

Sanders is now the starting QB at Colorado and getting some Heisman buzz. Pratt was never in the portal and elected to stay at Tulane for 2023, but a huge win over Southern Cal in the bowl game gave him a bump.

Today, I’ll identify three more QBs who are worth betting on after transferring schools in the hopes of eventually starting. 

Stats are meaningful for Mojo’s college market, but draft capital is even more significant. We’re all pretty comfortable with the top three (or four) QBs being projected in the first round, but the rest of the lot? There will certainly be quarterbacks drafted after Thursday night! Let’s see if any can offer some return on investment. 

Remember, a player’s Share Price reflects statistical expectations in their NFL career. For NCAA prospects, college stats only matter if they affect how the market views their NFL potential. That all starts with their expected draft position. 

Make sure you tack on their 2x Multiplier if you want an opportunity for higher returns!

Kyron Drones, $1.60

Someone I liked during the recruiting process, Drones signed with Baylor and spent two seasons as their backup. He got a few chances to see live snaps this past season and played decently: 61% completions, 9.5 yards per attempt, eight rushes, 49 yards on the ground, and two scores.

Now, he’s headed to Blacksburg and will have every opportunity to be Virginia Tech’s signal-caller. There is a lot of projection needed with this situation: both with Drones’ ability to develop and the Hokies’ taking a step forward.

He throws a nice ball, but the 6’2”, 222 pound QB doesn’t always put it in the right spot. Accuracy will be something to keep working on in the future. The depth chart at Virginia Tech is as wide open as can be, and it is reasonable to assume Drones was signed to start. 

A bet on Drones could easily return double if he winds up starting the entire season. There are some players who have never taken meaningful game snaps prices over Drones right now like Walker Howard ($3.50), Brock Vandagriff ($1.88), and Ty Thompson ($1.74).

The players like Kedon Slovis ($2.33), Phil Jurkovec ($1.86), and Jake Garcia ($1.97) have not done much to prove they are better than a Day 3 pick in the NFL, but have a higher share price than Drones. 

On-field time will boost Drones’ stock. I don’t think you’ll ever get a better entry point on him than right now

Simply putting stats on the board will boost Mojo numbers. I think this is the time to bet on Drones to make some noise as a full time starter and watch his stock price grow. 

Collin Schlee, $0.81

This is what I live for. Schlee started his career at #MACtion darling Kent State, played one full season and then leveled up to a Power 5 program. He had big shoes to fill after stepping in for long-time starter Dustin Crum and didn’t exactly impress.

However, Schlee did face a ridiculous non-conference schedule of Washington, Oklahoma, and Georgia. He must have raised some eyebrows around the country because now Schlee finds himself with Chip Kelly’s at UCLA. 

Playing in the Rose Bowl on Saturdays is a great way to improve your stock. As a quick-and-dirty comp, outgoing UCLA QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson has limited NFL upside but still boasts a Mojo price of $4.59. 

Schlee is bigger, stronger, and has a better arm, but Thompson-Robinson was far more efficient. Perhaps that was just a function of the offense though and Kelly could unlock something from Schlee’s physical tools.

All in all, he is a major value in the market. We know he’s got a big arm and can run, two qualities that evaluators look for (see: Levis, Will). We know he earned a scholarship from a high-major, Power 5 school. We know his coach has a history of maximizing his offensive playmakers. 

The only snag in this projection is the arrival of five-star freshman QB Dante Moore, but I don’t think that’s a major concern for 2023. True freshmen, no matter how highly touted, rarely start in the highest levels of college football. I'm Going Long on Schlee with this paltry share price and am excited to reap profit. 

Donovan Smith, $0.73

Smith is the most established QB on this list with 360 career attempts. He started five games as a redshirt Freshman in 2021 and looked good doing it completing over 60% of his passes on 8.5 yards per attempt. 

He took a step back in 2022 as he split time with two other quarterbacks and had to deal with a new system. He’s since transferred to the offensive playground that is the University of Houston 

I expect the 6’5” 230 pound redshirt Junior will turn some heads as a Cougar. Presumably given the keys to the offense as Clayton Tune tests the NFL draft, Smith will have every chance to put up big stats in Dana Holgorsen’s system.

The aforementioned Tune is barely an NFL prospect with far less physical tools than Smith, but still has a share price of $3.33. A $1K bet on Smith would be worth more than $7K with his 2x Multiplier if he can match Tune’s share price.

I had fun digging around the bargain bin here, but these players all have clear paths to playing time in 2023 and should see their share prices rise.

Prices are current as of 01/24/2023 3:00 PM
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