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Appalachian State Football Adds Seven Through Transfer Portal

App State Football has officially added seven transfer portal signees as early enrollees for the 2024 spring semester, head coach Shawn Clark announced Tuesday, the first day of spring classes.

The current signees with previous NCAA football experience are, listed in alphabetical order: Jason Chambers (CB, North Carolina Central), Avarion Cole (STAR, North Carolina A&T), Myles Farmer (SAF, Syracuse), William Fowles (WR, Louisville), Michael Marotta (OL, Valdosta State), Thomas Shrader (OL, Florida State) and Charles Wright (QB, Texas).

Additionally, eight high school recruits from the December signing class have enrolled early and are starting classes this week. Those newcomers are, listed alphabetically: Jackson Bussey (DL), Felix Doege (OL), Kai Fernandes (STAR), Jack Kelly (TE), Trey Lenhardt (SAF), Kaleb Neal (SAF), JT Sowell (OL) and Matthew Wilson (QB).

The group of 25 scholarship newcomers to date, including early enrollees and December signees arriving during the summer, includes six offensive linemen, four receivers, three defensive linemen, three cornerbacks, three safeties, two “Star” defenders, two quarterbacks, one outside linebacker and one tight end.

Below are bios for the seven current transfer portal signees.

Jason Chambers — CB
6-0, 185
Charlotte, N.C. (North Carolina Central)
Prior to App State: Member of North Carolina Central’s program from 2022-23, transferred with two seasons of eligibility remaining after appearing in 22 games and defending 16 passes (with three INTs and 13 breakups) in his two seasons with the Eagles … Had 41 tackles, three interceptions, six pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery in 12 games for a 9-3 team that qualified for the FCS playoffs in 2023 … First-team HBCU All-American from the College Football Network and a semi­­­­finalist for the Aeneas Williams Award (top HBCU defensive back in Division I) … Picked off a pass in three straight games, with returns of 19, 6 and 44 yards en route to All-MEAC recognition … Made 27 tackles, broke up seven passes and had two tackles for loss in 10 games during the 2022 season for a 10-2 team that captured the HBCU national championship with a Celebration Bowl win against Jackson State … As a freshman, had nine tackles in the Celebration Bowl win and a career-high 11 stops against Campbell.

High School: Cornerback and return specialist at Butler High … Selected to play in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas … Named SW4A All-Conference as a senior in 2021 for a seven-win team.

Avarion Cole — STAR
6-0, 190
Charlotte, N.C. (North Carolina A&T)
Prior to App State: Member of North Carolina A&T’s program from 2021-23, transferred with two seasons of eligibility remaining after appearing in no games in 2021, then 11 apiece over the next two seasons … Ranked second on the 2023 team with 70 tackles while also posting three interceptions, four pass breakups, five tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and one fumble recovery in 11 games as an outside linebacker … Three different games with nine tackles during the 2023 season … Member of the Dean’s List in the Fall 2023 semester … Had 39 tackles (30 solo), two interceptions, four tackles for loss and one pass breakup in 11 games in 2022.

High School: Played high school football at Chambers High in Charlotte under head coach Glenwood Ferebee … Played in the 2021 Queen City Bowl that showcased Charlotte’s top seniors after helping Chambers win a state title with a 10-1 record … Made 106 tackles and had four interceptions as a junior at Northwest Cabarrus.

Myles Farmer — SAF
6-3, 200
Atlanta, Ga. (Syracuse)
Prior to App State: Played the 2023 season at Syracuse after being a member of Nebraska’s program from 2019-22, leaving him one year of eligibility remaining following his departure from Syracuse … Played in 44 FBS games (with 16 starts) from 2019-23 and totaled 130 tackles, four interceptions, three tackles for loss and two forced fumbles … Tom Osborne Citizenship Team honors in 2023 and 2020 in addition to a Brook Berringer Citizenship Team honor in 2020 … Played in 13 games for Syracuse in 2023, totaling 20 tackles, one forced fumble and 1.5 tackles for loss … Started in all 11 of his appearances for Nebraska in 2022, recording 73 tackles, one interception and five passes defended, highlighted by 14 tackles against Minnesota … After redshirting as a true freshman (three game appearances in 2019) and playing in five games (with one start) during an injury-shortened, COVID-affected season in 2020, appeared in 12 games (with four starts) in 2021 … Younger brother, Kendall, signed with App State as a high school recruit in December.

High School: Secondary standout at Westlake High … Named all-region first team as a senior after earning second-team honors as a junior … Three-star prospect … Ranked among the top 50 safeties nationally by Rivals and among the top 60 safeties in the country in the 247Sports Composite rankings.

William Fowles — WR
6-3, 205
Hialeah, Fla. (Louisville)
Prior to App State: Transferred from Louisville with four seasons of eligibility remaining … Appeared in one game as a redshirting true freshman at Louisville in 2023, catching one pass for 7 yards against Murray State.

High School: Attended Dade Christian for three years and played his final season at Avant Garde … Four-star ranking from 247 Sports … 2023 UA Next All-American … Rated the No. 97 wide receiver in the country … Caught 47 passes for 1,100 yards and 19 touchdowns as a junior before being slowed by injuries as a senior … Had a seven-catch, 204-yard game against Opa Lock Monsignor.

Michael Marotta — OL
6-5, 310
Spring Hill, Fla. (Valdosta State)
Prior to App State: Member of Valdosta State’s program from 2020-23, transferred with two seasons of eligibility remaining after appearing in 19 games over his final two seasons with the Blazers … Started at center in all 14 games during a 2023 season in which Valdosta State went 12-2 and reached the Division II national quarterfinals … After being at Valdosta State during the fall of 2020 (when no games were played because of COVID protocols) and redshirting in 2021 for a team that finished as the national runner-up, played in five games as a redshirt freshman in 2022, including the final four games … Named to GSC Academic Honor Roll.

High School: Named to the Gulf Coast 8 All-District and All-County teams … Was a team captain at Nature Coast Tech … Selected to play in the 2020 352 All-Star Game, 2020 FACA All-Star Game and 2020 Blue-Gray Game, garnering All-America accolades … Florida Athletic Coaches Association All-Star … Three-time district champion … Named a North Florida All-Star … Also wrestled in high school.

Thomas Shrader — OL
6-5, 305
Venice, Fla. (Florida State)
Prior to App State: Versatile lineman who can play multiple positions was a member of Florida State’s program from 2020-23 and transferred with two seasons of eligibility remaining … Played in 16 career games at FSU with one start, including action in 11 games during a 2023 season in which the Seminoles took an unbeaten record into the Orange Bowl … Played in four ACC games and started one (against NC State) as a true freshman in 2020 (during the COVID year) and also played in one game in 2022 … Multiple time ACC Honor Roll member and Seminole Scholar.

High School: Three-star recruit rated as nation’s No. 13 center and 75th overall prospect in Florida by 247Sports … As a senior, helped Venice advance to semifinal round of 7A state playoffs while blocking for an offense that rushed for nearly 3,000 yards and averaged 32.8 points per game .. Blocked for an offense that averaged 43.1 points per game, rushed for 2,892 yards and passed for 2,790 yards as a junior for a team that won 11 games and advanced to the semifinal round of state playoffs … Won state title as a sophomore, blocking for an offense that averaged 39.5 points per game, passed for 3,145 yards and added 2,982 yards on the ground … Also played basketball at Venice.

Charles Wright — QB
6-1, 205
Austin, Texas (Texas)
Prior to App State: Member of Texas’ program from 2021-23, transferred with two seasons of eligibility remaining after redshirting as a true freshman … Appeared in four games for the Longhorns, making his debut against Texas Tech in his lone 2020 appearance and playing in three games as a redshirt freshman in 2022 … Appeared against ULM, UTSA and Oklahoma in 2022 … Four-time member of the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll earned degree from Texas as well as a 2021-22 Academic All-Big 12 Rookie Team honoree.

High School: Academic all-state, district MVP and three-time all-district honoree who was a four-year varsity letterman at Austin High School … Ranked No. 25 nationally among dual-threat quarterbacks by Rivals and No. 26 nationally pro-style quarterbacks by 247Sports … PrepStar All-Midlands Region selection … Finished high school career with more than 8,000 passing yards and 80 passing touchdowns … MVP and first-team All-District 26-6A as a senior in 2020 … Second-team 6A Academic All-State by the Texas High School Coaches Association … Completed 222 of 345 passes for 2,759 yards and 35 touchdowns with nine interceptions and rushed 112 times for 442 yards and five touchdowns in just nine games as a senior … Threw for at least 300 yards in five games, including three over 400 yards … Passed for at least three touchdowns in seven games, including four with five or more … Opened the season with six touchdown passes and one rushing touchdown against Pflugerville Connally … First-team All-District 25-6A in 2019 … Completed 206 of 371 passes for 2,510 yards and 27 touchdowns with 13 interceptions as a junior … Offensive Newcomer of the Year in District 25-6A in 2018 … Completed 276 of 450 passes for 2,862 yards and 26 touchdowns with eight interceptions as a sophomore … Played in five varsity games as a freshman in 2017 … Completed 27 of 36 passes for 408 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions … Played for head coach Michael Wooten … Also played lacrosse at Austin … ­­­­Father attended The University of Texas.