Texas State Bobcats’ 2024 Transfer Portal Moves Include Adding Tunmise Adeleye, Losing T.J. Finley

    The transfer portal is becoming an integral part of roster construction. How did the Texas State Bobcats fare in the transfer portal this offseason?

    G.J. Kinne has proven two things in his two seasons at the helm of Incarnate Word (2022) and Texas State (2023) — he can win (20-7 combined record), and he can recruit, specifically through the transfer portal.

    Kinne collected a 53-man signing class his first year with the Bobcats in 2023, 39 of which were transfers. He’s slowed down a bit this season (34 signed, 17 transfers), but the 35-year-old coach continues to wheel and deal with plenty of moves in the transfer portal for Texas State.

    Texas State Bobcats 2024 Transfer Portal Moves

    The Bobcats have added more players from the portal (17) than lost (16), but there’s a big elephant in the room and it’s standing behind the center.

    Three quarterbacks that were on the roster for the Bobcats entered the transfer portal – T.J. Finley, Malik Hornsby, and C.J. Rogers – while another quarterback, Arizona QB Jayden de Laura, transferred last month, only to quickly withdraw a week later.

    Transferring from Auburn, Finley started every game for the Bobcats last season, setting the program’s single-season record for passing yards (3,439). He announced in January that he intended to return to Texas State but changed his mind the following week soon after De Laura committed to the Bobcats.

    De Laura signed with Texas State two days after committing and Finley committed to Western Kentucky. However, the outcry over a juvenile court case and a recently settled civil lawsuit accusing De Laura of sexual assault when he was in high school became deafening, and he withdrew from the program.

    The damage was done, and Finley was already gone, along with backup Hornsby, who scored six touchdowns on the ground off the bench last season. Hornsby committed to play receiver for in-conference foe, Arkansas State.

    With the winter transfer portal window now closed, the Bobcats will have to wait until April before fully exploring the options available there.

    A less than ideal situation, but Kinne signed Finley in the same window after spring practice last season. There’s a good chance he’ll try to do the same this year with only a redshirt freshman (P.J. Hatter) and a true freshman (Brad Jackson) on the roster at quarterback.

    Finley and Hornsby are the two big departures. While Ashtyn Hawkins (141 catches, 1,745 yards, 11 touchdowns in three seasons) leaving for Baylor also hurts, the Bobcats have plenty of returners from last season while securing loads of talent from the portal.

    Losing Hawkins’ production at receiver won’t be easy. Still, the Bobcats signed four receivers to ease the burden, including two from the portal, junior Jaden Williams (Boston College) and sophomore Beau Sparks (Utah Tech).

    Joey Hobert, Texas State’s leader in receptions (76), receiving yards (895), and tied leader for receiving touchdowns (eight), is a former Utah Tech Trailblazer, like Sparks. Texas State hopes to replicate Hobert’s trajectory with Sparks, who had 74 catches for 723 yards and seven touchdowns in 11 games as a freshman for the Trailblazers last year.

    MORE: College Football Transfer Portal Tracker 

    The Bobcats are losing four running backs to the portal, but are returning Ismail Mahdi, the team’s leading rusher, while signing three other running backs, all from the portal. Two are from UTEP, senior Deion Hankins and junior Torrance Burgess, who are reunited with newly hired running backs coach Barrick Nealy, who had the same position with the Miners.

    Texas State signed six total defensive linemen, with four from the portal, including junior DT Tunmise Adeleye. A five-star recruit out of high school, Adeleye is a former starter for Texas A&M in 2022 (two games, six tackles) and a contributor for Michigan State last season (six games, nine tackles, one sack).

    Kinne is reunited with senior DE Steven Parker, the 2023 Southland Conference Defensive Player of the Year at Incarnate Word. Parker started his career at Kansas before playing the last two years with the Cardinals, including 2022 under Kinne.

    Texas State signed six defensive backs, three from the portal with senior Justin Harris (Cincy), and juniors Donte Thompson (Arkansas State) and Trez Moore (UTEP). Thompson spent one season in the Sun Belt against Kinne, but was an All-Southland Conference First Team selection at Incarnate Word under him in 2022.

    MORE: Texas State Bobcats’ Top 10 Returning Players

    While Texas State made up for losses by adding value in the transfer portal, the quarterback vacancy is a glaring omission for Kinne and the Bobcats.

    It’s likely to be addressed before the summer, as it was last season with Finley, but it’s hard to assess the Bobcats fully until then.

    Texas State’s 2024 Transfer Portal Additions (18)

    • Tunmise Adeleye, DL (Texas A&M/Michigan State)
    • Alex Merrit, DL (Eastern Michigan)
    • Steven Parker, DL (Kansas/Incarnate Word)
    • Brice Bass, DL (Gardner Webb)
    • Justin Harris, DB (Cincy)
    • Donte Thompson, DB (UIW/Arkansas State)
    • Trez Moore, DB (UTEP)
    • James Neal, LB (UTEP)
    • Preston “Max” Harris, LB (Incarnate Word/ULM)
    • Jaylen Jenkins, RB (Washington State)
    • Deion Hankins, RB (UTEP)
    • Torrance Burgess, RB (UTEP)
    • Jayden Williams, WR (Boston College)
    • Beau Sparks, WR (Utah Tech)
    • Blake Smith, TE (Texas A&M/Oklahoma)
    • Tellek Lockette, OL (ULM)
    • Brendan Franke, K (Nebraska/Georgia Southern)
    • Jayden de Laura, QB (Washington State/Arizona)*

    *withdrew from University

    Texas State’s 2024 Transfer Portal Departures (16)

    • T.J. Finley, QB (WKU)
    • Malik Hornsby, QB/WR (Arkansas State)
    • Jayden de Laura, QB (undecided)
    • C.J. Rogers, QB (undecided)
    • Ashtyn Hawkins, WR (Baylor)
    • Shadeed Ahmed, WR (undecided)
    • Donerio Davenport, RB (Louisiana Tech)
    • Josh Berry, RB (undecided)
    • Damarius Good, RB (undecided)
    • Calvin Hill, RB (UTEP)
    • Ian Hover, OL (Mercer)
    • Jaylon Shelton, DB (UTEP)
    • Ronnie Hamrick, DB (Lamar)
    • Bryce Cage, DL (Utah State)
    • Dontavious Burrows, LB (undecided)
    • Graham Faloona, LB (undecided)

    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!

    College Football Transfer Portal Tracker

    Never miss a beat with the CFN-exclusive College Football Transfer Portal Tracker, listing the student-athletes entering and exiting the transfer portal.

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