Ohio State Cornerback Tyreke Johnson Enters Transfer Portal

By Dan Hope on May 12, 2021 at 3:43 pm
Tyreke Johnson

Tyreke Johnson will finish his college football career elsewhere.

The Ohio State cornerback entered the transfer portal on Wednesday.

A five-star recruit in the class of 2018, Johnson never started a game in three seasons with the Buckeyes. Even as Ohio State's secondary struggled last season, Johnson rarely saw the field, playing just 77 snaps in six games, with 50 of those snaps coming against Rutgers. He made eight total tackles over the past two seasons.

Although he took first-team reps at cornerback this spring with Sevyn Banks and Cameron Brown sidelined by injuries, he was still projected to be a backup this season, with second-year cornerback Ryan Watts also making a push for playing time outside.

While the loss of Johnson is a hit to Ohio State's veteran depth at cornerback, the Buckeyes still have 18 scholarship defensive backs on the roster. Others who will look to earn playing time at outside cornerback behind Banks, Brown and Watts include second-year Lejond Cavazos, true freshmen Jakailin Johnson, Jordan Hancock and Denzel Burke and sixth-year Demario McCall, who recently made the move to cornerback after spending the first five years of his Ohio State career on offense.

Johnson becomes the fourth member of last year's Ohio State team to enter the transfer portal, following wide receivers Mookie Cooper (Missouri) and Jameson Williams (Alabama) and offensive tackle Max Wray (Colorado). A redshirt junior, he still has three years of collegiate eligibility and will be immediately eligible to play at his new school after the NCAA expanded the one-time transfer exception to all sports.

Ohio State now has 86 scholarship players, but players who would have been seniors in 2020 – McCall, Antwuan Jackson, Thayer Munford, Haskell Garrett and Marcus Williamson – don't count against the 85-man scholarship limit.

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