Former JMU QB Jordan McCloud Commits to Texas State

    Jordan McCloud, the 2023 Sun Belt Player of the Year, committed to play his final season in the high-powered Texas State offense.

    The Sun Belt Player of the Year in 2023 is staying in the conference, with former James Madison Dukes quarterback Jordan McCloud committing to the Texas State Bobcats.

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    Jordan McCloud Transfers to the Texas State Bobcats

    One of the more heavily anticipated college football transfer portal announcements arrived Tuesday morning, with former James Madison quarterback McCloud confirming his commitment to Texas State ahead of the 2024 college football campaign.

    McCloud spent one season in Harrisonburg last year, throwing for 3,657 yards, 35 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions while rushing for another 276 yards and eight scores. On top of earning Sun Belt Player of the Year, he was named First-Team All-Sun Belt and a Davey O’Brien Award semifinalist.

    The Dukes finished 11-2, but JMU coach Curt Cignetti left for Indiana before the team’s bowl game, a 31-21 loss to Air Force in the Armed Forces Bowl. McCloud entered the portal at the beginning of December but still played in the bowl game, throwing for 257 yards and three touchdowns to one pick.

    A seventh-year senior from Tampa, McCloud started his career at USF (2018-2020) before transferring to Arizona (2021-2022). He took a redshirt as a true freshman at USF in 2018 before being named the starter in week three of 2019. In 20 games in 2019 and 2020, he threw for 2,770 yards, 21 touchdowns, and 10 picks before transferring to the Wildcats.

    He only played in three games at Arizona, passing for 481 yards, two touchdowns, and five interceptions. He was the backup to Jayden de Laura in 2022, another quarterback who transferred to Texas State in January but quickly withdrew.

    McCloud’s commitment is a major coup for Texas State head coach G.J. Kinne, who lost his starting quarterback, T.J. Finley, his backup, Malik Hornsby, and third-stringer, C.J. Rogers, to the transfer portal after the season.

    Finley committed to WKU, while Hornsby left for Arkansas State to play receiver. Rogers is still not committed. Finley started all 13 games for the Bobcats, setting a program single-season passing record with 3,439 yards and 24 touchdowns to eight picks.

    Hornsby only attempted 15 passes for the Bobcats last season, but he had six rushing scores off the bench. Rogers hasn’t attempted a pass at the collegiate level.

    Texas State Quarterback Turmoil This Offseason

    Finley’s departure came on the heels of De Laura’s short-lived tenure in San Marcos. The controversial QB committed and signed to Texas State in January, prompting Finley to enter the portal.

    De Laura then withdrew a week after signing amid controversy over a sexual assault civil case that he had just settled. He recently declared for the NFL Draft, but the damage was done with Finley by then, who is still set to join the Hilltoppers.

    MORE: College Football Transfer Portal Tracker

    Now, Kinne has not only secured a replacement for Finley and De Laura, but he may have even upgraded at the quarterback position.

    He’s had a knack for finding tremendous value late in the transfer portal process and has orchestrated two of the top-scoring offenses in the country in his first two seasons as a head coach by doing so.

    Kinne’s first season as a head coach at Incarnate Word in 2022, he helped develop a collegiate journeyman quarterback into the Walter Payton Award Winner.

    Lindsey Scott Jr played at LSU (2016), East Mississippi State (2017), Missouri (2018), and Nicholls State (2019-2021) before setting the FCS record for single-season touchdown passes (60) in his lone campaign with Kinne.

    The following season at Texas State, Kinne brought Finley in during the summer after spring practice had concluded. The former LSU (2020) and Auburn Tiger (2021-2022) set career highs in almost every offensive category with the Bobcats, leading Texas State to its first-ever bowl game and win.

    KEEP READING: 2024 Sun Belt Power Rankings

    While Scott and Finley needed a new environment before finding success with Kinne, McCloud has the benefit of coming into Kinne’s system, having already experienced that prosperity.

    We’ve seen Kinne turn a rough ball of clay into a dazzling sculpture before. Seeing what he does when a near-finished project like McCloud walks through the door will be fascinating.

    Miss any action from the top college QB Rankings during the 2023 football season? Want to track all the movement with the college football transfer portal? College Football Network has you covered with that and more!

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