2023 Eastern Michigan Football Roster Tracker, Updates
Tracking all the incoming, outgoing, and returning players for EMU football.
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Welcome to the first-ever 2023 Eastern Michigan football roster tracker. All of the players leaving, joining, and staying with EMU this year will be recorded here, along with any necessary recruiting info.
This is a breathing post that will be updated all throughout the offseason, up until the 2023 season kicks off. Be sure to keep this saved to your tabs to check the current state of the EMU roster.
EMU finished the 2022 season with a 9-4 record overall (5-3 MAC) after its bowl win over San Jose State (41-27). EMU’s lead record was good enough to finish as co-champions of the MAC West division with the tiebreaker in Toledo’s favor.
Still, the 2022 season will go down as one of the best teams in program history.
For Chris Creighton, 2023 will be his 10th season leading the program where he holds an all-time record of 46-61 including five trips to bowl games over the last seven years. The 2022 season was EMU’s fourth winning season with Creighton as head coach, which is clearly saying a lot for a program that hasn’t had any winning seasons since 1987 when it went 10-2.
With Creighton still at the helm, there’s little expectation for this team to lose many players to the transfer portal. While the portal has been around for a handful of years by now, this is the first year where the NCAA will use transfer windows to help organize the process. Now, players have 45 days to enter the portal beginning the day after Selection Sunday (Dec. 5, 2022-Jan. 18, 2023), and then another 15-day window to enter the portal from April 15-April 30.
So far this year, EMU has lost 27 players to the transfer portal, though not all of them are scholarship-level losses. To highlight, EMU has lost two offensive starters to the portal: LT Marcellus Johnson (Missouri) and WR Darius Lassiter.
EMU signed 18 players to its roster during December’s early period, then added eight more (two are walk-ons) for the normal signing period as of Feb. 1. Of the 26 newly-added players, 17 join from the high school ranks, four join from junior college, and five transfers were added through the portal.
This post is broken up into offensive and defensive sections with a roster summary for each position. Within each position, I’ll start with four bullets to cover player movement (returning players, departing players, high school signees, and incoming transfers) and provide some context as to why the position room looks the way it does and where it could go forward.
Last Updated: May 27, 2023
Returners (3): #4 Austin Smith (3 years of eligibility remaining), #8 Cam’Ron McCoy (4), #15 Jeremiah Salem (4)
Departures (2): Brooks Blount (transfer), Taylor Powell (grad)
Class of 2023, HS recruits signed (0): N/A
Transfers in (1): #3 Ike Udengwu III (Mt. St. Antonio College, 2)
EMU’s quarterback room saw a lot of turnover last winter. The top two QBs on the roster both transferred out, and EMU brought in graduate transfer Taylor Powell (Missouri, Troy) and freshman Cam’Ron McCoy (Cincinnati) to fill out the room. Austin Smith, the only scholarship quarterback to stay at EMU in that time, eventually turned into the team’s starter this year. Jeremiah Salem was a preferred walk-on addition last year, and Brooks Blount transferred to EMU after one year of football played in the junior college ranks. As a freshman (College of DuPage), Blount was a Second Team NJCAA All-American and helped his team with the D3 national championship.
Powell and Smith shared time as EMU’s starting quarterback in 2022, sometimes due to somebody going down with an injury. Powell got hurt during the Arizona State game and Smith got his first couple of starts after. Then, role reversal: Smith, who later became the starting QB, went down with a season-ending injury vs. Kent State and Powell finished the season behind center.
With just one scholarship quarterback off the roster, EMU chose to be very selective with how that empty chair will be filled going into next season. It’ll be easy to pencil in Smith as QB1 heading into 2023, but Creighton has a long track record of adding youth and experience with multiple players to the QB room in most off-seasons.
There are currently no high school QBs committed to EMU’s 2023 signing class. EMU’s initial plan was to have that seat be filled by a big-armed high school recruit. Drew Viotto, a Canadian who moved to Walled Lake, Mich. in middle school, made his initial commitment to EMU over the summer, but flipped his decision to Minnesota before the season began.
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