College football teams that won, lost the 2024 offseason

These college football teams did the best, and worst, in an active offseason moving into a historic 2024 kickoff.
Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

There's no such thing as the offseason in college football anymore, not with all the extra work teams and coaches have to do. On top of the usual recruiting efforts, schools have to contend with the NIL marketplace and two rounds of transfer portal movement to preserve and improve their rosters.

Read More: ESPN reveals preseason college football rankings

Now, after both transfer windows have closed, the calendar moving to the summer months, and teams preparing for fall camp to put the finishing touches on their teams, let's take a look at what teams have made the most, and the least of the time.

College Football Teams that Won, Lost the 2024 Offseason

Winner: LSU

Defense was the issue for Brian Kelly's team a year ago, and while the unit loses key personnel, it added three very important strategists, most importantly new coordinator Blake Baker from Missouri.

He'll take over play-calling duties while line coach Bo Davis and secondary coach Corey Raymond are also vital additions for the unit. They provide a firm foundation for LSU's defense to build from.

Loser: Michigan

College football's defending national champs lost their coach, both coordinators, quarterback, top wideout, top tailback, and important defensive players.

Sherrone Moore is an important in-house promotion to replace Jim Harbaugh, and he gets tailback Donovan Edwards, corner Will Johnson, and two key D-linemen, but there are huge questions at QB, WR, and on the offensive line.

Winner: Ole Miss

While an expanded College Football Playoff figures to benefit many traditional top-15 teams, the Rebels get a bigger edge thanks to the transfer additions made by Lane "Portal King" Kiffin.

Defensive linemen Walter Nolen and Princely Umanmielen are huge gains, as is linebacker Chris Paul.

Running back Quinshon Judkins is out, but Henry Parrish is a solid replacement to balance out an offense that returns quarterback Jaxson Dart and brings on transfer receiver Juice Wells.

Loser: Washington

Just when they needed stability moving into the Big Ten, the Huskies underwent major structural change, losing head coach Kalen DeBoer, quarterback Michael Penix, Jr., and wide receivers Rome Odunze, Jalen McMillen, and Ja'Lynn Polk. Transfer quarterback Will Rogers is a notable get for incoming head coach Jedd Fisch, who led Arizona to 10 wins last season.

Winner: Oregon

Also heading into the Big Ten this year, Oregon brings remarkable momentum into the tougher conference setting.

Already boasting arguably college football's top wide receiver corps and two of the nation's best lines, Dan Lanning scored monster transfers like veteran quarterback Dillon Gabriel, his heir apparent Dante Moore, and wide receiver Evan Stewart to make that offense even better.

Loser: Alabama

Losing the NCAA-record seven-time national champion head coach who built your program into the sport's most dominant dynasty is a paradigm shift, no matter who replaces him.

DeBoer brings an 86 percent win mark in his career, but he's not faced the kind of competition he will in the SEC every week.

For now, he'll have the lingering effects of Nick Saban's recruiting prowess to help build his roster, but DeBoer still faces the daunting task of keeping Alabama in the title hunt every year.

Winner: Ohio State

Losing three straight games to Michigan inspired Ryan Day to get aggressive in the transfer portal, and the results are highly promising.

Judkins, the two-time SEC rushing champ to pair with TreVeyon Henderson in the backfield, veteran quarterback Will Howard to stabilize the position for either Julian Sayin or Air Noland next year, and five-star ex-Alabama safety Caleb Downs in the secondary, are top-flight pick-ups for the Buckeyes.

Day also scored notable returning players, like Jack Sawyer and JT Tuimoloau on the line to rush the passer, wide receiver Emeka Egbuka, among others.

Loser: Oregon State

Last season, the Beavers won eight games and looked like a program on the make.

Then conference realignment happened, destroying the Pac-12 as we know it, leaving the school one of just two members.

Then came more trouble: head coach Jonathan Smith left for Michigan State, then quarterback DJ Uiagalelei, then wideout Silas Bolden, then quarterback Aidan Chiles, then tailback Damien Martinez.

A dozen in all, leaving the Beavers and first-year head coach Trent Bray to face a very uncertain future.

Winner: Florida State

Anticipating heavy personnel losses from last year's undefeated team, Mike Norvell went deep into the portal again, and helped give the Seminoles another easy path to ACC title contention.

Uiagalelei is an important piece at quarterback, as are tailback Roydell Williams and wide receiver Malik Benson from Alabama, speedster Jaylin Lucas, and three offensive line acquistions.

Defensively, edge rusher Marvin Jones, Jr. from Georgia, defensive back Earl Little, and linebacker Shawn Murphy are notable gains.


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James Parks


James Parks is the founder and publisher of College Football HQ. He previously covered football for 247Sports and CBS Interactive. College Football HQ joined the Sports Illustrated Fannation Network in 2022.