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Heel Tough Blog: Tar Heel Depth Defensive Back Enters the Portal

Updated: Dec 12, 2022

Peyton Williams- Getty Images

Today has been a big day for transfers out of the program following the loss in the ACC Championship Game to Clemson. Backup quarterback Jacolby Criswell made the move this morning and linebacker RaRa Dillworth earlier this afternoon. A third player has now exited the program, this time in the defensive backfield.

Just a short time ago, redshirt freshman safety Dontavius Nash revealed his intentions to transfer via social media. The spring standout, who was forced into some early action due to injuries, played just 16 snaps this season, all on special teams, registering one tackle. Nash finished his career having played just 28 snaps, all on special teams, and tallied two career tackles.

His departure is probably the least significant of the ones that the team has suffered today based on his lack of a major role even on special teams and the depth the team has in the defensive backfield. Safety doesn’t have nearly the depth that cornerback has right now, but it is still in pretty good shape. Seniors Cam’Ron Kelly and Giovanni Biggers have the option to return next season, as does Don Chapman, who provided some nice depth behind them for the majority of the season. True freshman Will Hardy showed some nice promise and he could see an expanded role next season, as could junior Ja’Qurious Conley, who has missed nearly the entire season with a lower body injury. The team will also add 3✮ prospect Ayden Duncanson to the mix during the early signing period to provide extra.

This one wasn’t nearly as impactful as Dillworth’s decision to transfer, but this is noteworthy because of the fact that it is a transfer on the defensive side of the ball. With three players already in the portal today, one has to wonder how many more could be coming today.


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