Troy lands five transfer offensive linemen  

Published 6:51 pm Sunday, January 8, 2023

It was a busy Sunday for Troy University Football as five offensive linemen from around the country announced their intentions to transfer to the school. 

The five include Oklahoma State center Eli Russ, Tennessee State offensive tackle, Blake Austin, Tennessee State offensive guard Tavon Matthews, Birmingham Southern center Braylun Smith and Georgia Military College center Boaz Stanley. Russ is a 6-foot-4-inch, 310-pound Ardmore, Okla., native that was an All-State offensive lineman at Plainview High School. Russ earned the bronze in the State Shot Put as a senior in high school, as well. Russ played in 16 total games at OSU – including nine this past season – and will have three years of eligibility left. He was a three-star lineman coming out of high school and originally signed with OSU over offers from other schools like North Texas, Texas, Tulsa and others.  

Austin is a 6-foot-4-inch, 285-pound Johnson City, Tenn., native started at left tackle for ETSU this season. He also started all 13 games in 2021 and started three games in 2020. Austin earned All-Region, All-Conference and Lineman MVP at Science Hill High School. He will have two years of eligibility left.  

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The 6-foot-1-inch, 317-pound Matthews started at offensive guard alongside Austin at ETSU this season. In 2021, Matthews earned All-SoCon and FCS Sophomore All-American honors after starting in all 12 games. He also started six games in 2020 and all 12 games as a freshman in 2019. He finished his freshman season with 32 knockdowns. Matthews earned All-District and All-Conference honors at both Freedom High School and Woodbridge High School.  

Smith is a 6-foot, 283-pound Corner native that earned All-SAA Honorable Mention after starting in 10 games. He also played 11 games in 2021. Smith also earned All-County and All-Birmingham honors at Corner High School and played in the AHSAA North/South All-Star Game.  

Stanley is a 6-foot-3-inch, 310-pound Bogart, Ga., native that earned JUCO All-American honors as a freshman this season. He played both guard and center at Georgia Military College. Stanley played high school football at both Parkview High and North Oconee.