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Heel Tough Blog: Tar Heels Lose Defensive Player to Portal for Third Straight Day


The defensive turnover that the Tar Heels have experienced so far this offseason has been unprecedented and it has continued to carry over into the second transfer window.

After losing a defensive player to the portal each of the last two days, the team found out this morning that they are losing another young edge rusher to the portal. Redshirt freshman defensive lineman Bryson Jennings announced via social media that he will be transferring for the final four years of his college career.

Jennings did not see the field in his true freshman season last year, but he was a highly-touted member of the Tar Heels’ 2022 recruiting class. In his four seasons with the varsity team at Clover Hill High School in Midlothian, VA, he tallied 229 tackles and 50 sacks. In 2021 as a senior, he posted 56 tackles and 10 sacks in seven games.

Jennings, like Gabe Stephens who entered the portal yesterday, is a guy that appears to have been buried on the depth chart. He was amongst those battling for reps at the power end spot this spring, a position where it looks like the majority of reps could go to upperclassmen. Jahvaree Ritzie seems like he is the favorite to start there right now, but there is a chance that he could be moved inside to help the interior of the unit. Tomari Fox will also split time between tackle and end as he returns from his year-long suspension. Des Evans wasn’t available for the spring, but it appears that he will once again play a decent amount of reps there this season. Jacolbe Cowan saw his role expand as the season went along in 2022 and will also be pushing for a role behind the starters here. The room now contains Beau Atkinson, one of the standouts of the spring along the defensive front. More than likely, Jennings was below all five of these guys, leading to this move.


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