They’re already lining up, and there are only so may spots for so many quarterbacks.

Last year, there were nearly 200 quarterbacks in the transfer portal, according to 247Sports portal tracker. Don’t be shocked if, by the end of the spring portal in April, the number is more than 200 again.

“Unless you’re talking about an elite high school player, you’re probably better off playing a (portal) quarterback,” an SEC coach told Saturday Down South. “You can still develop the high school guys, but there’s value in a guy who has played at this level and knows the demands and investment. And we all think, ‘Well, he’ll be better with us.'”

Make no mistake, the new 2024 conference alignment will factor into quarterback decisions, too. If you’re a Top 10 quarterback, there will be a natural draw to play in the newly-expanded SEC or Big Ten — or for a blueblood program with deep pockets in the ACC.

This list is guaranteed to grow and change, but here’s a look at the top 20 quarterbacks in the portal at this date, and their transfer destination or best fits.

1. Dillon Gabriel, Oklahoma

Destination: Committed to Oregon.

Why it works: Efficient and proficient at both UCF and Oklahoma, Gabriel has accounted for 151 career TDs (26 rush). Fits perfectly with Oregon’s spread offense.

2. Riley Leonard, Duke

In a perfect world, Leonard has wrapped up his regular season at Duke and is preparing for the NFL Draft. But multiple injuries shortened his season and has led to his return to college football in 2024.

Or as 1 ACC coach told Saturday Down South: “We all thought (Wake Forest QB) Sam (Hartman) was a big deal last year. Riley will make a much greater impact wherever he goes if he stays healthy. He can make every throw, he runs hard and he’s 1 of the fastest guys on the field.”

After a breakout season in 2022, Leonard played 5 full games and parts of 2 others this year before shutting it down in late October. He has a career TD/INT ratio of 24/10, and has 19 career rushing TDs.

Best fits: Notre Dame, Texas A&M, Florida State.

3. Will Howard, Kansas State

A tough, talented dual-threat who was undervalued the past 2 seasons at Kansas State. How much better can he be in a system more suited to his skill-set?

He had 51 TDs (12 rushing) the past 2 years and completed 60 percent of his passes for 4,276 yards.

Best fits: USC, Arkansas, Nebraska.

4. Cameron Ward, Washington State

Began his career at FCS Incarnate Word, but has had 2 strong seasons at Wazzu. He’s a high volume, Air Raid quarterback who can also, at times, create conflict with his legs.

A TD/INT ratio of 48/16 at Wazzu, but his completion percentage (65 percent) over that time is about 5-7 percentage points lower than where it should be in a high volume pass offense.

Best fits: Ohio State, Miami, Florida State.

5. Will Rogers, Mississippi State

Flourished for 3 years in Mike Leach’s Air Raid offense, then never really fit in the new offense of OC Kevin Barbay. His numbers were down across the board, and he missed time with injuries.

The big question: Does he stay in the SEC, or move to the Big Ten?

Best fits: Washington, Auburn, Wisconsin.

6. Dante Moore, UCLA

A 5-star from the 2023 recruiting class, he started 5 games and played well at times in coach Chip Kelly’s offense — but never seemed like a fit. He was benched in mid-October, and didn’t see significant time until the season final — after an injury to starter Ethan Garbers.

An uber-talented thrower who is the right system/quarterbacks coach away from a breakout season.

Best fits: Ohio State, FSU, USC, Washington.

7. Kyle McCord, Ohio State

Former 5-star finally got his shot at Ohio State, and didn’t play all that poorly. The problem: his production paled to what Ohio State typically churns out at the position.

Fans weren’t happy, the coaching staff wasn’t, either. McCord was told he’d be competing for the starting job in bowl practices and spring practice, with quarterbacks on the roster and a transfer portal addition.

Threw for 3,170 yards and 24 TDs — but threw 2 costly interceptions in the only game that matters (Michigan), and he’s suddenly out.

Best fits: Nebraska, Miami, South Carolina.

8. Grayson McCall, Coastal Carolina

McCall entered the portal after last season and visited numerous schools, including Florida and Auburn. He decided to return to Coastal with new coach Tim Beck, missed the last 5 games with a head injury and his numbers plummeted from the previous 2 seasons.

McCall was a top-10 quarterback in college football in 2022 and could again reach that level with the right coach and program. If Jamey Chadwell leaves Liberty for a Power 5 job (Duke?), don’t be surprised if McCall follows.

Best fits: South Carolina, Auburn, Arkansas.

9. Aidan Chiles, Oregon State

On potential alone, he’s a Top 3 transfer. Former bluechip recruit has a big arm and can stress defenses in both the pass and run games.

He should’ve played more in 2023, but the Beavers were in a Pac-12 title run and DJ Uiagalelei was solid and protecting the ball. Chiles had 7 TDs (3 rush) in 9 games of mopup duty.

Best fits: Michigan State, Ohio State.

10. Max Johnson, Texas A&M

Destination: Committed to North Carolina.

Why it works: An accurate, tough competitor who has played 4 seasons in the SEC (at LSU and Texas A&M), and has seen it all. Nothing will phase him.

Has a career TD/INT ratio of 47/12, and a new start in a quarterback-friendly offense may be exactly what he needs.

11. AJ Swann, Vanderbilt

Watch his tape. He’s a talented thrower who didn’t fit at Vandy, for a variety of reasons.

Swann has a big frame (6-3, 230) and big arm, and is deceptively athletic. Put him in an offense that has pieces around him, and watch him produce. In 2 seasons at Vandy, he bounced in and out of the lineup and had a TD/INT ratio of 22/9.

In the right program, he will be the steal of the portal season.

Best fits: Maryland, South Carolina, Duke.

12. Brock Vandagriff, Georgia

Destination: Committed to Kentucky.

Why it works: UK has had success in the past with transfer QBs (Will Levis, Devin Leary), and has a transition plan in place with OC Liam Coen.

Georgia coach Kirby Smart says Vandagriff nearly won the starting job in fall camp, just losing out to Carson Beck. If that’s the case, Vandagriff will be closer to Levis than Leary.

13. Jordan McCloud, James Madison

Played previously at USF, Arizona and JMU, and finally put together an injury-free, drama-free season in 2023. The results showed: 40 TDs (8 rush) and only 9 INTs, while accounting for 3,724 yards (311 rush).

A talented dual threat who can flourish in the right system, much like he did at JMU under coach Curt Cignetti — who took the Indiana job earlier this month.

Best fits: Indiana, UCF, Kansas State.

14. Dequan Finn, Toledo

MAC Player of the Year has been productive with the Rockets (88 career TDs), but does it translate to the Power 4? The biggest issue: Finn completed just 60 percent of his passes — a red flag for some — in 2023, and his career percentage (57) is worse.

Best fits: Wisconsin, Syracuse, Rutgers.

15. Brendan Sorsby, Indiana

Destination: Committed to Cincinnati.

Why it works: Sorsby shared time with Tayven Jackson and finally earned the starting job for good in mid-October — and the Hoosiers started making things interesting week after week. In 6 starts, Sorsby had 17 TDs (4 rushing) and 5 INTs, but IU won only once — an upset of Wisconsin in Bloomington.

Only a freshman, he has 3 seasons of eligibility remaining. He has a live arm and is a willing runner.

16. Tyler Van Dyke, Miami

Injuries slowed his development in the past 2 seasons, his numbers dropped and the environment (outside of the team) became too toxic to stay.

He has thrown 17 INTs in the past 2 seasons, and he’s not the same player he was in 2021, when his productive season (25 TDs, 6 INTs) led to NFL Draft analysts projecting him as a 1st-round pick in 2023 draft.

That clearly hasn’t happened. Maybe a fresh start and a new system will lead to productive change.

Best fits: Pittsburgh, NC State, Rutgers.

17. Tyler Shough, Texas Tech

Destination: Committed to Louisville.

Why it works: He’s the prototypical Jeff Brohm quarterback: Big, strong, and a live arm. The problem: Shough has had problems staying healthy for an entire season.

His career has been truncated for one reason or another: The 2020 season at Oregon because of COVID, and the 2021-23 seasons at Texas Tech because of various injuries and getting beaten out for the starting job.

His career TD/INT ratio is solid (46/17), but his career completion percentage (63.2) isn’t as high as you’d like for a volume thrower. He has a high ceiling, and if he stays healthy, can be a productive starter under a coach (Brohm) who has turned around his share of careers.

18. DJ Uiagalelei, Oregon State

Has never really recaptured the high level of play from his freshman season in 2020, when he started 2 games for injured Trevor Lawrence and beat Boston College and lost at No.4 Notre Dame in overtime.

The operation is still a little clunky and slow, and the accuracy isn’t exactly efficient (59.7 percent). But he proved this season that he could manage an offense and a game, and steer clear from trouble.

Best fits: Hawaii, Arizona State.

19. Max Brosmer, New Hampshire

Destination: Committed to Minnesota.

Why it works: One of the top quarterbacks in the FCS level the last 2 seasons, throwing for 6,613 yards with 63 TDs (7 rush) and only 14 INTs. Overlooked in the recruiting cycle despite a huge season playing in the state of Georgia’s 2nd biggest classification at Centennial High School.

Georgia offered him a preferred walkon position on the roster, but Brosmer decided to play at New Hampshire. Has 1 season remaining, and the Gophers are desperate for consistency at a position that has been a crapshoot for the last 3 seasons.

20. Matthew Sluka, Holy Cross

Sluka was the Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year this season and is a 2-time All-Patriot League first-team selection. He produced 97 career TDs (38 rushing) in 4 seasons and threw for 5,916 yards.

Sluka isn’t a finished product as a thrower; this was the first season he completed more than 60% of his passes. Holy Cross uses run-oriented zone-read offense, and Sluka wasn’t asked to do much in the passing game.

That will have to expand at the FBS level, but he has the arm talent to make it work.

Best fits: Northwestern, Vanderbilt.