Why did Oklahoma quarterback Caleb Williams put his name in the transfer portal?

Just when it seemed like the news about coaches and players finding new homes was cooling off, the college football landscape was shaken again in a big way Monday.

Oklahoma quarterback Caleb Williams announced on Twitter that he would be putting his name on the transfer portal after an impressive freshman season that saw him replace Spencer Rattler as the team’s starter mid-year.

“Words cannot describe the amount of love I have for my teammates, coaches and the Sooner Nation … As you all know, the sudden changes this season sent shockwaves to Sooner Nation and were really tough on everything. our team, “Williams said. he said in his statement. “I came to Oklahoma with a game plan, but with all the recent changes, I need to figure out what the right plan is to move forward.”

Among those sudden changes are the departures of head coach Lincoln Riley to USC and several prized recruits who had either become engaged or interested in Oklahoma. Riley believed in Williams too.

Rattler has since transferred to South Carolina, while former No. 1 catcher Jadon Haselwood has committed to Arkansas.

Williams saw his first significant action last October in the Red River Rivalry game with Texas. He entered through Rattler, whom Riley had benched. Williams completed 16 of 25 passes for 212 yards and two passing touchdowns, while adding 88 yards and a rushing touchdown. Oklahoma rallied 28-7 down to win 55-48.

Sporting News looks at why the freshman phenomenon might be leaving Norman.

Why did Caleb Williams enter the portal?

Williams and his father, Carl, gave an idea of ​​why the quarterback put his name on the portal. Neither explicitly described any problems Williams had with Oklahoma, nor criticized incoming coach Brent Venables, the former defensive coordinator for OU and Clemson.

Both were clear, however, that the decision has a lot to do with the future of the young Williams.

“(T) he only way I can talk to other schools and see who can offer the best preparation and development for my future career is by logging in,” said Caleb Williams.

He already has his sights set on the NFL, according to his father, who told Yahoo’s Pete Thamel that it influenced the decision.

Notably, Williams said a return to Norman is on the table. He will “take a few days off to decompress” after Oklahoma’s 47-32 win over Oregon in the Alamo Bowl.

Venables and Oklahoma Athletic Director Joe Castiglione released a statement Monday explaining why they believe the Sooners are the best option for Williams.

Where is Caleb Williams from?

Williams is from the soccer-rich DMV area (DC, Maryland, Virginia) and played high school football in Washington, DC, where he excelled at Gonzaga College High School. He displayed his double threat prowess, throwing for 1,770 yards and 19 touchdowns as a junior and rushing for 838 yards and 18 touchdowns. He helped lead Gonzaga to his first state championship since 2002.

Williams was ranked the No. 2 quarterback and the No. 7 player nationally by 247Sports in the Class of 2021. He chose Oklahoma over LSU, Maryland, Clemson and others. He was also the number one player in DC and came to Oklahoma higher than Rattler nationally.

Caleb Williams Stats

Williams walked into a packed room of quarterbacks headed by a former Heisman favorite on Rattler. Rattler started, but often disappointed, before giving up his spot to Williams at the Red River Rivalry after committing two turnovers.

Williams stood out after that as a pure passer and double-threat QB. He threw six touchdown passes without interceptions against Texas Tech and completed more than 70 percent of his passes four times.

Overall, Williams completed 137 of 212 passes (64.6 percent) for 1,916 yards and 21 touchdowns with just four interceptions. He added 442 yards and six rushing touchdowns in 11 games.

Rattler played in nine games and completed 140 of 187 passes (74.9 percent) for 1,483 yards and 11 touchdowns for five interceptions, plus 77 yards and three touchdowns as a running back.