Former Spartan DE Tyson Watson transfers to UMass


MSU defensive end Tyson Watson lines up during the Spartans’ second 2021 fall scrimmage/ Photo Credit: MSU Athletic Communications

Manit Patel, General Assignment Reporter

EAST LANSING, Mich—After entering the transfer portal on Dec. 24th, former Michigan State football defensive lineman Tyson Watson committed to the University of Massachusetts on Thursday.

Watson, a 6-foot-6, 270-pound defensive lineman, did not play in the Peach Bowl, nor did he during the regular season as a true freshman. Watson committed to Michigan State in April of 2020 after Mel Tucker and his staff had arrived, and was one of the first recruits for Tucker and the Spartans in the 2021 class. Watson played his high school football at Warren Mott High School; the Marauders made the MHSAA Division I playoffs all four years that Watson was at the high school. 

As a recruit, Walker was a three-star rated by 247Sports and was ranked the No. 747 player in the country for the 2021 class, the No. 92 overall defensive lineman prospect, and the No. 18 player from the state of Michigan. 

Walker earned a total of 18 offers, with other notable Power Five offers coming from Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, Ole Miss, Purdue, Syracuse, Tennessee, and West Virginia. 

MSU defensive end Tyson Watson/ Photo Credit: MSU Athletic Communications

After entering the portal on Christmas Eve, Watson tweeted that he received offers from Central Michigan and UMass, but did not announce any other offers he may have received. This season, they went 1-11, firing Walt Bell on Nov. 7th, 2022 and hiring former Michigan defensive coordinator Don Brown as their new head coach on Nov. 22.

Watson is the fifth Spartan to find a new home since the end of September after cornerback Kalon Gervin transferred to Kansas, linebacker Chase Kline transferred to Eastern Michigan, safety Michael Dowell transferred to Pittsburgh and defensive tackle Kyle King transferred to Ball State on Jan. 3.

He will have four years of eligibility remaining.