Michigan State will be without one of its newest offensive weapons for the 2019 season, as transfer wide receiver Jayden Reed will be forced to sit out this year. Reed announced the news on his Instagram account:
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, as NCAA rules call for undergraduate transfers to sit out the first year at a new school in most cases. Although several players have been granted waivers for immediate eligibility in the past couple of years, and the reasons why the NCAA allows such waivers often vary, and some of those reasons can be head-scratching. While Reed did not directly state whether or not he formally applied for a waiver for immediate playing time, it seems to be implied in his sentiment.
Reed announced his decision to transfer from Western Michigan University to Michigan State University in late May. He had a strong freshman season in Kalamazoo, leading the Broncos in all major receiving categories with 56 catches for 797 yards and eight touchdowns, on his way to Freshman All-American honors. He also returned kicks and punts for WMU, including a punt return touchdown against Delaware State.
Following the 2019 season, Reed will still have three years of eligibility remaining with the Spartans, starting with the 2020 season. We could see a future Payton Thorne to Jayden Reed connection in East Lansing, as the two former high school teammates in Illinois will reunite at MSU.
Reed may have found his way onto the field early had he been granted eligibility, filling in as a slot receiver and/or kick/punt returner, especially following the departure of incoming freshman Jase Bowen. However, MSU returns plenty of talent and experience at the wide receiver position with Darrell Stewart Jr., Cody White, Cam Chambers, Jalen Nailor and others. So, stashing Reed for the future may not be the worst thing.