UTSA WR Zakhari Franklin to play at Ole Miss next season after entering transfer portal

Franklin was highest-rated available transfer according to 247Sports’ rankings

UTSA wide receiver Zakhari Franklin, right catches a pass for a touchdown in front of UAB cornerback Starling Thomas V, left, during the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 20, 2021, in San Antonio. (AP Photo/Eric Gay) (Eric Gay, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

SAN ANTONIO – The UTSA Roadrunners football team will be without a key component as top playmaking wide receiver Zakhari Franklin has chosen to play with Ole Miss next season.

Franklin, a two-time first-team All-Conference player, was the highest-rated available player in the transfer portal, according to 247Sports’ rankings.

The 6-foot, 190-pound wide receiver has had back-to-back 1,000-yard receiving seasons and has totaled 3,348 yards and 37 touchdowns in his career. He is currently the Roadrunners’ all-time leader in catches, receiving yards and receiving TDs. He was expected to be a key cog in the Roadrunners’ aerial attack this upcoming season.

“These past 4 years have been some of the best moments of my life,” Franklin said on Twitter of his decision to enter the transfer portal. “Thank you to my teammates, coaches, training staff, equipment team and everyone that’s been a part of my journey. The city of San Antonio will be forever in my heart.”

Franklin officially entered the portal on April 28. He is listed as the 19th transfer to commit to play for the Rebels and head coach Lane Kiffin this offseason. He joins a team that is replacing its top two receivers from last season, opening the way for playing time in the Southeastern Conference, which is thought to be the toughest collegiate league.

UTSA is currently transitioning from Conference USA to the American Athletic Conference. UTSA will kick off the 2023 season in Houston on September 2.


About the Author:

Ben Spicer is a digital journalist who works the early morning shift for KSAT.