ASU Football: How Transfer Portal Could Impact Team in 2023

ASU Football: How Transfer Portal Could Impact Team in 2023
By Christopher Boan
Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

It has been a rapid-fire start to the Kenny Dillingham era in Tempe, with the newly hired Sun Devils’ head coach signing 15 players from the NCAA’s transfer portal as of today’s early signing day.

Dillingham, who was hired last month to reestablish ASU as a regional force, is following a playbook that’s quickly becoming commonplace in college football.

That blueprint involves leaning heavily on the portal to fill gaps in a team’s roster, while rounding out the edges with traditional high school recruits.

Most of that reliance on transfers stems from the lack of time to recruit high school talent, as Dillingham and his staff had less than a month between when they came onboard and Wednesday’s signing day.

BetArizona.com took a look at how other CFB programs that signed at least 15 transfers in 2021 fared this fall, to see what Sun Devils’ fans can expect from Dillingham’s bunch next fall.

No doubt Arizona sportsbooks will be watching closely.

Every Power 5 CFB Team Bringing in 15+ Transfers

SchoolTransfersYear Before Record (Pct.)Year After Record (Pct.)
🏈 USC*204-8 (.333)11-2 (.846)
🏈 Ole Miss*1710-2 (.833)8-4 (.667)
🏈 Georgia Tech173-9 (.250)5-7 (.417)
🏈 LSU*166-6 (.500)9-4 (.692)
🏈 Kansas*152-10 (.167)6-6 (.500)
🏈 Nebraska153-9 (.250)4-8 (.333)
*2021 record doesn’t include bowl games(Overall average W-L improvement .187)

 

How Can ASU Football Define Success

If Dillingham’s first ASU squad has success, it can go one of two ways. Either following the tracks of fellow Pac-12 program USC and finding immediate success or going the way of other mid-level Power Five programs (like Georgia Tech and Kansas) and finding more moderate improvement.

According to 247 Sports, ASU’s traditional 2023 high school recruiting class ranks 73rd in the country. The Sun Devils’ transfer haul is 14th.

The addition of former Notre Dame QB Drew Pyne, USC WR Jake Smith, and a host of defensive players, should help elevate ASU in the eyes of Arizona college football betting in 2023.

DraftKings Arizona and other sportsbooks have their hands full with a boatload of college bowl odds and the SunDevils are not on the board.

Even with modest improvement from their recent transfer portal haul, the Sun Devils still would be hard-pressed to reach bowl eligibility in the year ahead. 

That’s because ASU went 3-9 in 2022.

Things were equally bleak on this season for the University of Arizona. The Wildcats were a hard read for Caesars Arizona and other sportsbooks, finishing with a 5-7 record. They did, however, capture the grudge match over ASU to close the season, 38-35.

Slow Progress Is a Smart Bet

Coming off a 3-9 mark,  even if the Sun Devils add the average win percentage increase of .187 in our chart to their 2022 win percentage (.250), they would wind up at .437, or roughly five wins, for the season.

Still, going 5-7 would be a sizable improvement over what turned out to be a lost fall in Herm Edwards’ last season in Tempe. It would give Sun Devils fans reason to be optimistic about the future of the program under Dillingham.

The Chandler native should have plenty of talent to elevate ASU’s chances next fall, with four transfers that were rated as four-star players out of high school coming to town.

For now, Sun Devils fans can look at the success that Lincoln Riley and company have put forth in L.A. and envision such a future in Tempe.

With winnable non-conference games against Fresno State, Southern Utah, and possibly even Oklahoma State at Sun Devil Stadium in 2023, there’s reason to believe that such a feat can be replicated in the Grand Canyon State.

If nothing else, the Sun Devils’ influx of transfer portal talent should lead to more wins in the year ahead, which is always reason for celebration.

As you look ahead to Sun Devils football, keep a close watch on BetArizona.com, which also provides the best Arizona sports betting promo codes.

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Contributors

Christopher Boan is the lead writer at BetArizona.com after covering sports and sports betting in Arizona for more than seven years, including stops at ArizonaSports.com, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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