Reports: Penn State Football Wide Receiver Justin Shorter Enters NCAA’s Transfer Portal
Update 1 p.m. November 27: Justin Shorter is no longer listed on Penn State football’s active roster following yesterday’s reports of his entry into the transfer portal.
Although entering the transfer portal doesn’t necessarily force Shorter to move away from Happy Valley, the writing may be on the wall for the redshirt freshman wide receiver. He has a maximum of three seasons of NCAA eligibility remaining.
Original Story: Penn State football wide receiver Justin Shorter has entered his name into the NCAA’s transfer portal, as first reported by Yahoo! Sports’ Pete Thamel.
Head coach James Franklin confirmed that he discussed the matter with Shorter at his weekly press conference on Tuesday afternoon, but he didn’t provide any more information than that.
Shorter, a redshirt freshman from South Brunswick, New Jersey, was a highly-touted five-star recruit coming out of high school. The 6’4″, 235-pound wideout has been a regular starter for the Nittany Lions, but he hasn’t gotten as many targets as fellow starters KJ Hamler and Jahan Dotson this year.
He’s registered 12 receptions for 137 yards with zero touchdowns so far this year. Shorter matched his career-best total of three receptions in Penn State’s 28-17 defeat to Ohio State last weekend. Although he’s only been held without a catch three times this year, Shorter has only made more than one catch four times throughout his career.
Shorter is Penn State’s first notable entry into the transfer portal this year after the Nittany Lions lost quite a few players to transfers during the offseason. Among the departures were potential starting quarterback Tommy Stevens and Juwan Johnson — another big wide receiver who originally hails from New Jersey.
Tuesday’s news definitely doesn’t confirm that Shorter won’t be back with Penn State next season. Lamont Wade was among the players who began exploring a move away in the offseason, but he elected to withdraw his name and stay in Happy Valley.
The NCAA introduced its transfer portal in October of last year, and it allows players who wish to leave their current program to begin discussing a transfer with another team’s coaching staff without their current head coach’s permission. Entering the portal isn’t a binding agreement that forces players to leave, but Penn State doesn’t have to bring Shorter back to the team if he is still in the transfer portal by the end of the upcoming spring semester.
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