University at Buffalo quarterback Tyree Jackson has entered the NCAA's Transfer Portal, which signifies Jackson's intent to explore a transfer. UB on Wednesday confirmed Jackson's entry into the Transfer Portal.
Jackson, who redshirted as a freshman and played three seasons, has one remaining year of eligibility, and can join another FBS program as a graduate transfer without having to sit out a year.
“Tyree Jackson informed me today that he entered his name into the NCAA Transfer Portal,” UB coach Lance Leipold said Wednesday in a statement. “As a recent graduate, he is exploring his options. Tyree and I have had good open talks about his future and he is considering all of his options, including returning to Buffalo for his final season.”
Jackson could not be reached for comment.
Jackson is a redshirt junior who threw for 3,131 yards and 28 touchdowns on 225 of 407 passing and was intercepted 12 times in 14 games this year.
In 32 games in three seasons, Jackson has passed for 6,999 yards on 533-of-955 passing, with 49 touchdowns and 24 interceptions.
Jackson’s entry into the transfer portal doesn’t necessarily mean that he will leave UB. However, if an athlete enters the NCAA Transfer Portal, it allows him or her to inquire and communicate with other programs about the possibility of transferring.
If Jackson decides to transfer to another program, he will join a group of FBS quarterbacks who are reported to consider a transfer, including Notre Dame’s Brandon Wimbush, Texas’ Cameron Rising and Casey Thompson, Georgia’s Justin Fields, Cal’s Ross Bowers and Kentucky’s Danny Clark.
Jackson earned his undergraduate degree in social science/interdisciplinary studies earlier this month. If he transfers to join a team in the spring, he has a small window in which to move, as many schools start their spring semester in early January.
If Jackson leaves UB, the Bulls will likely turn to returnees Kyle Vantrease, West Seneca West graduate Matt Myers, Dominic Johnson or Kolton Brewster to fill that hole. Only Vantrease and Johnson have any playing experience of those four; Vantrease was 4-for-9 passing for 20 yards in three games and Johnson was 1-for-2 passing for four yards and was intercepted once in four games.
Trevor Bycznski, a 6-foot-5 pro-style quarterback from Ohio, will also join the Bulls this summer as a true freshman. Bycznski threw for more than 3,000 yards with 26 touchdowns and five interceptions and ran for another 12 touchdowns at Berea-Midpark High.
In addition to transferring or staying at UB, Jackson has a third option: declare for the 2019 NFL Draft. College football players who are three years removed from high school and who have not graduated or exhausted their eligibility have until Jan. 14 to declare for the draft.
DraftScout.com ranks the 6-foot-7, 245-pound Jackson as the No. 15 quarterback in the 2020 draft class.
Draft analysts say that while Jackson has size, arm strength and the ability to make long throws, he needs to develop a quicker, cleaner throwing motion. He needs to improve his accuracy; he completed 55.3 percent of his passes, eighth in the MAC and 96th nationally. He also needs to improve his ability to make plays outside of the pocket.
Dan Shonka, a former NFL scout and the general manager of Ourlads Scouting Services, told The Buffalo News last week that Jackson should stay in college for one more year.
“He’s a raw talent," Shonka said. "He’s got to improve his consistency. He’s a big guy and he’s athletic, but you still need to improve your consistency throwing the ball and making decisions.”
“If you’re not accurate and you can’t make good decisions, you’re wasting everybody’s time. Someone will take you because you’re big and strong, but your future is limited unless you’re very accurate. And you’ve got to make good decisions.”