Fresno State Bulldogs

Jake Haener withdraws from transfer portal, opening door for a return to Fresno State

Just one week after saying his goodbyes to the Central Valley, quarterback Jake Haener is not jumping ship after all. 

Haener entered the transfer portal on Nov. 30, reportedly with the intent to follow former Fresno State head coach Kalen DeBoer to Washington. 

But Haener withdrew his name from the portal Wednesday, which was first reported by 247 Sports. 

In an announcement Haener posted last week on social media, the quarterback called the decision to enter the transfer portal “the hardest of [his] life.” 

While Haener’s reversal comes on the same day that Fresno State brought back Jeff Tedford as head coach, sources indicated to The Sun earlier this week that Haener’s decision may have come from an inability to transfer for the second time in his collegiate career. 

Per the NCAA transfer rules, a player who has already transferred once would only be eligible to transfer a second time as a grad-transfer. 

It is unclear if Haener has graduated from college and has received his undergraduate degree. His page on Fresno State’s website says that he is a communications major.

Other players on the team who have already graduated, such as offensive lineman Alex Akingbulu, are noted as being enrolled in a master’s program. 

And even if a graduate entered the transfer portal who has already transferred once, the player would only be eligible to transfer if granted a waiver by the NCAA – a process that by no means is guaranteed. 

There has not been an announcement regarding Haener’s status for the New Mexico Bowl on Dec. 18. Earlier in the week, interim head coach Lee Marks, who will coach the ‘Dogs in the bowl game, said either Jaylen Henderson or Logan Fife would be the starting quarterback. 

And just because Haener withdrew his name from the transfer portal, it does not mean that he will play another snap with the Bulldogs. Haener, who has completed five years of college football, could turn pro and declare for the 2022 NFL Draft. 

However, if he decides to finish out his collegiate career, he will return to play with Tedford, the coach that brought him in from Washington before the 2019 season. 

In his second year as the starting quarterback, Haener completed 67.5 percent of his passes for 3,810 yards, 32 touchdowns and 9 interceptions.

Daniel Gligich is a reporter for The San Joaquin Valley Sun, focusing on Fresno State Athletics and the southern San Joaquin Valley. Email him at daniel.gligich@sjvsun.com.