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Riley Leonard entering the transfer portal, where will he end up?

With the window for the transfer portal opening on December fourth, rumors are running wild with big names entering the portal to test the waters out at another school. With this year's edition of the coaching carousel gaining speed, some notable names are looking to play elsewhere. This year the Duke Blue Devils have been hit on the coaching front and look as though their quarterback Riley Leonard will be playing elsewhere next season. Let's take a look at the potential options available for him.

Leonard who at 6'4" and 205 lbs. Leonard has done well for the Blue Devils under coach Elko. He's got a solid arm and good accuracy on his throws. He does show tendencies to have a bit of a gunslinger mentality and pushes the ball downfield 7.2 yards per attempt in his career at Duke. While he missed time this season due to injury, he struggled to replicate the success he had through the air in 2022 (20 TDs/6 INTs). He is also deceptively mobile and can make plays with his legs, although he uses them as a secondary tool in his arsenal. His best asset when I look at his film, is his poise in the pocket, he constantly shows that he will make throws even if it means taking a hit from the defender.

The favorite to land Leonard's services at the moment is the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. This would make consecutive seasons that the Irish bring in a graduate transfer from the ACC (Sam Hartman last year). Will they find more success in bringing in Leonard? Time will tell if he joins the Irish and if he is able to learn and execute the new offensive system. Going to South Bend would also give Leonard a larger stage to showcase his ability.

Second, on the list is the school that Leonard's current coach, Mike Elko, is expected to head to Texas A&M. The first order of business for Elko is to find a quarterback as Max Johnson has reportedly entered the transfer portal to finish their careers elsewhere. With Elko wanting to implement his offense having a quarterback that knows it as well as Leonard will help Elko and his staff put his predecessor at A&M further in the rearview mirror. With the competition in the SEC, Leonard could help the Aggies compete sooner.

The third option on the list is a bit of a wildcard, the Miami Hurricanes. With Tyler Van Dyke reportedly wanting to enter the transfer portal himself, that leaves a question for the Hurricanes thin at quarterback with two young options in Jacurri Brown and Emory Williams. An experienced quarterback to take the reigns could help in the development of the young quarterbacks on the roster. It would also keep him going against familiar opponents in the ACC.

Fourth on my list of schools for Leonard is in his home state of Alabama. The Auburn Tigers brought in Payton Thorne last season from Michigan State and the season has not gone well for various reasons. Playing at Auburn, which is three hours away from his hometown of Fairhope could be a motivating factor in where he wants to play. A similar situation to the Hurricanes, with two young quarterbacks on the roster having experience at quarterback, could help the Tigers course correct and compete against the SEC.

Crystal Ball - If I were a betting man, the safe money would be on him going to play for the Fighting Irish next season. While they do make sense with the offensive scheme and what Leonard can do as a player seems to match well, I don't know if it will be his destination. Also, with the Jimbo Fisher era officially over in College Station, making every effort to unite their coach to be in Elko with someone who knows his system as well as Leonard is where I would guess that he ends up.


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