In just three short years, Shepherd University quarterback Tyson Bagent has emerged as one of the best signal-callers in the university’s history.
Bagent, this year’s NCAA Division II Player of the Year, has amassed 12,454 career passing yards and 118 career touchdown passes for the Rams, who reached the Division II semifinals this past season. His 5,000-yard, 53-TD pass effort this year, is also a school record.
Now, the 6 foot 3, 215-pound Shepherd junior may be moving on, and out, of the Rams’ football program.
Bagent has entered the NCAA’s Transfer Portal, according to a Friday tweet posted from a Rivals Transfer Portal Twitter feed. Shepherd’s Sports Information office confirmed Bagent’s updated status on Sunday.
“Tyson is a tremendous football player and an even better person,” Shepherd coach Ernie McCook said in an email. “I wish only the best for Tyson.”
The Transfer Portal was created by the NCAA in 2018 to manage the player transfer process, make it more transparent and give student-athletes the ability to let other schools know they wish to transfer to another school. The transfer program is carefully monitored and regulated by NCAA compliance officials.
While entering the transfer portal indicates a student-athlete is thinking about making a move to another school, it does not necessarily mean a student-athlete is leaving a school. It simply means a student-athlete is considering his or her options.
“We will just see how the process plays out,” McCook said.
Bagent, a Martinsburg native and former quarterback at Martinsburg High School, has been a major driving force behind Shepherd’s success this year. After no football last year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Rams came storming back, going 10-1 during the regular season and achieving a top-10 ranking in the Division II football poll.
Bagent came into the Division II spotlight this season for his late-game heroics during two of the Rams’ three playoff victories. He threw a 23-yard touchdown pass to wideout Josh Gontarek, with 1.9 seconds left in the game, giving Shepherd a come-from-behind, 38-34 win over Notre Dame College on Saturday, Nov. 27, at Ram Stadium.
The following week, Bagent hooked up with tight end Alex Wetzel for a game-winning, 42-yard TD strike, on the final play of the game. That allowed Shepherd to avenge a regular-season loss to Kutztown with a 30-28 win at Kutztown on Saturday, Dec. 4.
The Rams lost to eventual Division II national-champion Ferris State, 55-7, in the Division II semifinals on Saturday, Dec. 11. Shepherd finished the season ranked No. 6 in the final Division II football poll.