NCAA Football: Missouri at Arkansas

Arkansas quarterback Jacolby Criswell, a key contender for the starting quarterback job, has entered the transfer portal according to 247Sports. Criswell's departure clears the way for Boise State transfer Taylen Green solidify himself in the QB1 role. 

Criswell was a blue-chip recruit when he enrolled at North Carolina and played a key role backing up future NFL players Sam Howell and Drake Maye. He transferred to Arkansas in search of opportunity while serving as backup for another season, this time to KJ Jefferson

After Jefferson opted to transfer to UCF for the 2024 season, Criswell was in line for the starting job before the staff ultimately added Green as a transfer to compete. 

Green impressed during spring practices, so Criswell re-enters the transfer portal in search of playing time. Green is listed as a redshirt senior for the upcoming season but could play up to two more years thanks to his unused waiver from the COVID year. In a light quarterback transfer class, Criswell ranks among the top players available in search of playing time. He could compete for a starting job at the Group of Five level, or even provide some depth. 

Across four seasons, Criswell has completed 60.3% of his passes for 347 yards, four touchdowns and one interception. In a 48-14 loss to Missouri, he threw 20 passes but only mustered 96 yards. 

LIVE transfer portal updates: Follow along with latest news and analysis as the 2024 spring window opens

Looking to the future

With the battle all but decided, eyes turn to Green, a former two-year starter at Boise State. The Lewisville, Texas, native threw for 3,794 yards and 25 touchdowns over the past two seasons. He also adds a dynamic component as a runner, posting 1,024 yards rushing and 19 touchdowns over the past two seasons alone. As a sophomore, Green led Boise State to its first Mountain West championship since 2019. 

Now, Green steps into an Arkansas offense that desperately needs improvement. The Razorbacks hired former coach Bobby Petrino as offensive coordinator, a risk for the program that fired him in disgrace barely more than a decade ago. Through spring camp, Green looks like a perfect fit for the Petrino offense. During the spring game, Green completed 17 of 22 passes for 243 yards and three touchdowns in one half of play. He added 15 yards on the ground. 

Arkansas enters a critical 2024 season under fifth-year coach Sam Pittman. The Razorbacks went 1-7 in SEC play and ranked No. 116 nationally in yards per play, which ranked worst in the SEC. Pittman has a 23-25 record in four seasons but is only 11-23 in the SEC.