PULLMAN – Jarrett Kingston, a three-year starter on Washington State’s offensive line and the team’s top performer up front this season, entered the NCAA’s transfer portal on Monday, according to multiple reports.
Kingston provided consistent play for an unsteady position group this year, anchoring the offensive line at left tackle before suffering a season-ending lower-body injury Nov. 5 at Stanford.
Even before Monday’s news, Kingston was not expected to return to WSU in 2023. He participated in senior night celebrations Nov. 26. The 6-foot-5, 302-pounder had drawn some attention from NFL scouts this year and Cougs coach Jake Dickert told reporters that Kingston might try his hand at the professional level.
“We’d absolutely love to have Jarrett back,” Dickert said three days before WSU’s regular season finale against Washington. “I think he’s looking at taking an opportunity at the next level that we fully support. I don’t think any decision has been completely finalized … but I want them walking (on senior night) if they don’t know. Jarrett absolutely deserves this opportunity. Whatever happens after the season, he’ll make that decision and what’s best for him, and we’ll be involved and excited for him.”
Kingston was the Cougars’ top-graded offensive lineman this year and one of the highest-graded tackles in the Pac-12, per Pro Football Focus’ performance metrics. Despite missing the final four games of the season, he still earned an all-conference honorable mention nod.
Kingston joined the team in Los Angeles last week and watched the Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl from the sideline at SoFi Stadium. The Cougars couldn’t generate any consistency on offense in the 29-6 loss to Fresno State on Saturday.
With one year of eligibility remaining, Kingston is apparently considering his collegiate options elsewhere – presumably in hopes of boosting his draft stock.
He spent five years at WSU, signing with the team in the 2018 class as a three-star prospect out of Anderson, California. After redshirting as a true freshman, he saw time off the bench at left guard in 2019. Kingston claimed the starting job at LG in 2020 and held the post for two seasons.
Senior left tackle Liam Ryan was unavailable for the Cougars’ 2021 postseason game at the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas, so WSU shifted Kingston to LT – his natural position, said Dickert – and remained at the position heading into this season.
Kingston was the bright spot on a WSU offensive line that had a shaky season, surrendering 46 sacks – a bottom-five mark in the nation. The Cougars yielded 16 sacks across their final four games without Kingston in the lineup, including six in each of their last two games.
WSU played its finale without offensive coordinator Eric Morris, who left the team Tuesday to take the head coaching job at North Texas. Dickert expects to name Morris’ replacement by Jan. 8.
Sorting out the line will be a priority for WSU’s next offensive coordinator. The Cougars return three starters, two of whom played multiple positions this year. The team lacks dependable depth options up front.
Kingston is the 13th WSU player to enter the portal since the end of the regular season. He is the fifth starter to transfer out of the program, along with receivers De’Zhaun Stribling and Donovan Ollie, and linebackers Francisco Mauigoa and Travion Brown. Stribling is headed to Oklahoma State. Brown committed to Arizona State on Monday. He is reuniting with former Cougar assistants Brian Ward and assistant A.J. Cooper, both of whom left WSU’s program earlier this month to accept positions with the Sun Devils.
Ward, who coordinated WSU’s defense for one season, took the same job at ASU. Cooper, the Cougs’ edge rushers coach over the past three seasons, will oversee the Sun Devils’ linebackers.
WSU has secured five commitments from offensive tackles in its 2023 recruiting class. The NCAA’s early signing period opens Wednesday.