More and more college football programs have and will use the transfer portal to their advantage in search of an overnight rehaul or revamping of their roster. The Nebraska Cornhuskers are hoping for a big turnaround in 2024, and the transfer portal can help.

Matt Rhule will be entering the second season of his coaching tenure in Lincoln, with the first seeing him go 5-7. But that record may be deceiving, the Huskers were a top 20 defense in yards allowed per game and points per game allowed.

They also only went 1-5 in games decided by one possession—the main reason why was likely poor quarterback play. Nebraska quarterbacks completed only 52.1% of their passes and threw more interceptions (16) than touchdowns (10).

If Nebraska wants to retool quickly, then not only will they have to get a quarterback out of the transfer portal, but they also have to find weapons for that quarterback. The Huskers averaged the fifth-fewest passing yards per game in 2023. That only trailed the service academies (Army, Navy, and Air Force) and Iowa. Nebraska has to totally revamp their passing attack. Luckily, they'll have options in the transfer portal to do so.

Nebraska football, Michigan State football, Michigan football, Cornhuskers, Matt Rhule, Matt Rhule with Nebraska football stadium in the background

Kyle McCord

It may be a bit unrealistic for Nebraska to land a quarterback of Kyle McCord's caliber out of the transfer portal. But now that McCord is in the portal, they should at least try. The quarterback's season at Ohio State was up and down, but overall, it was pretty solid.

McCord ended the 2023 season by putting up 3,170 yards through the air with 24 touchdowns and six picks. He averaged a robust 9.1 yards per attempt and completed 65.8% of his passes. Of course, it does help to have former high school teammate Marvin Harrison Jr. at your disposal; Harrison Jr. did end up racking up about 38% of McCord's passing yards (1,211). But McCord still played good ball in 2023 for the Buckeyes.

The Huskers got the furthest thing from good quarterback play this past season. With how well their defense played, if Nebraska got the quality of quarterback play McCord showed this season, they might have made the Big Ten Championship Game. It's unknown if McCord would even consider Nebraska, but getting McCord would be a home run of epic proportions for the Huskers.

Julian Fleming

Why settle for just one former Ohio State Buckeye? Any time a player from the wide receiver factory becomes available, it's probably a good idea to pursue that player. That's the case with Julian Fleming, a former five-star prospect who just recently entered the transfer portal.

Julian Fleming's Ohio State career didn't go the way he probably thought it would. The former number three overall recruit in the class of 2020 caught 79 balls for 963 yards and seven touchdowns through four seasons in Columbus. It's not exactly his fault though. It's hard to find playing time when the competition is *checks notes* Chris Olave, Garrett Wilson, Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Jameson Williams, Marvin Harrison Jr., and Emeka Egbuka.

Yes, that's four former first round picks that were all at Ohio State while Fleming was there. That number will surely be five once Harrison Jr. declares for the NFL Draft and could (should) be six with Egbuka.

Of course Fleming didn't get the playing time he wanted at Ohio State! It's honestly a testament to him for staying at Ohio State that long despite the plethora of talent at wide receiver during his tenure there. He needs a place where he can establish himself, and Nebraska could be that place.

A receiver in a similar spot to Fleming just did so in Trey Palmer. Palmer was a LSU where guys like Ja'Marr Chase, Justin Jefferson, Terrace Marshall Jr., and Kayshon Boutte, among others, passed through Baton Rouge. Palmer eventually transferred to Nebraska, put up 1,043 yards and nine touchdowns on 71 receptions, got drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and has carved a nice role for himself in Tampa already.

Julian Fleming could be on a similar path, so why not go to the same place Palmer went? Nebraska should make that pitch. If they could land a receiver of Fleming's talent, that would be a major get for the Cornhuskers.