Today in the “Everyone probably should have seen this coming” department: Ricky Slade has entered the transfer portal, according to 247sports.
BREAKING: Penn State running back Ricky Slade is in the transfer portal. He was a five-star back in the 2018 class. https://t.co/6ZGR0sOopt
— 247Sports Transfer Portal (@247SportsPortal) February 5, 2020
Last season, Slade opened as Penn State’s starting running back, but he never really got going. He wound up rushing for 214 yards (fourth among the running back quartet) on 47 carries with two touchdowns, and he added 12 catches (second only to Journey Brown). His 4.6 yards per carry average was really good, but a distant fourth among the backs, and two more four-star recruits are coming in.
Journey Brown clearly is going to be the starter. Noah Cain clearly is going to play a ton. Devyn Ford has earned a look. And you don’t get guys like Caziah Homles and Keyvone Lee unless you guarantee them some kind of legitimate change to compete for a job early.
Although a resurgence certainly wasn’t out of the question, I’m just not sure there was a clear path to a pretty good amount of playing time for Slade. My biggest surprise here was that he didn’t make this decision a while ago.
He’s the second former five-star recruit at Penn State to enter the transfer portal since November, joining Justin Shorter, and I’m not sure that’s as big a deal among Penn State fans as it will be around the country. But, it will certainly be interesting to see what programs take a flier on Slade’s potential.
Donnie Collins has been a member of The Times-Tribune sports staff for nearly 20 years and has been the Penn State football beat writer for Times-Shamrock Newspapers since 2004. The Penn State Football Blog covers Nittany Lions, Big Ten and big-time college football news from Beaver Stadium to the practice field, the bowl game to National Letter of Intent Signing Day. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9100 x5368; @DonnieCollinsTT