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Wisconsin Badgers May Pivot Interests Following Transfer Miss

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Wisconsin football head coach Luke Fickell
Apr 11, 2023; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin defensive coordinator Mike Tressel, left, talks with head coach Luke Fickell during practice Tuesday, April 11, 2023 at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis. Mandatory Credit: Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Madison, Wis.– With the spring season coming to an end, the focus for the Wisconsin Badgers is shifting back towards finding ways to improve the team.

The Badgers football staff recently missed out on Boston College transfer Josh DeBerry. With DeBerry scheduled to attend Texas A&M, the Badgers are back to the drawing board if they felt they truly needed the defensive back. The NCAA transfer portal is scheduled to close April 30th, which means Wisconsin will have to move fast.

Many of the players remaining in the portal are looking to make their move as quick as possible. Recruiting transfer players typically comes down to their fit and their relationship to the coaching staff. For the Wisconsin Badgers, they will not have to look far to find replacement defensive backs.

Two Intriguing Transfer Portal Options Revealed

Inside the NCAA transfer portal, two particular defensive backs emerge as potential Badgers due to multiple factors. Between their scheme fits and past recruiting interests, each player could land on the Badgers radar as the portal begins to close. Both Oklahoma defensive back Jaden Davis and TCU corner back Keontae Jenkins would be valuable options for the Badgers.

Transfer Target: Defensive Back Jaden Davis

Former Oklahoma starter and four-year veteran Jaden Davis is an acrobatic play-maker as a defensive back. Davis has the ability to shift across the field, which is why he is not listed as a corner back on their roster. During his time with the Sooners, Davis was primarily a starter for the team but lost his spot multiple times.

In 47 games for the Sooners, the 5-foot-10-inch, 180 pound defensive back totaled 104 tackles. Davis capped off his final season with Oklahoma last year with a career-high 35 tackles. With one year of eligibility left Davis will seek out the program that needs his talents the most.

Davis is a versatile athlete who can drop back in coverage and react to the offense. The defensive back can also play man-to-man at a high level, with his style of play closely resembling a safety. Davis can play over the top and watch for deep balls as well, with 11 career pass defenses and one interception.

The former Sooners starter held offers from Wisconsin and Cincinnati during his high school recruitment. Given his style of play and the fact that the Badgers are familiar with him, Davis could be a solid transfer option.

Transfer Target: Corner Back Keontae Jenkins

Also coming in at 5-foot-10-inches, 180 pounds is the talented corner back Keontae Jenkins. Jenkins, a former four-star recruit in the 2020 class, committed to the TCU Horned Frogs out of high school. The corner back played in three games this past season before going down with an injury for the rest of the year. Jenkins appeared in 15 games across his three-year career with the Horned Frogs without finding much playing time.

The talented corner back has spent the majority of his time at TCU on special teams. Jenkins is a shifty player with extremely quick feet and a great sense for the ball. When he is on the field, Jenkins is an exciting player who loves to make a play and slow down the offense. Jenkins will have three years of eligibility left at the program he chooses to attend.

While Jenkins does not have the same playing style as Jaden Davis or Josh DeBerry, he can still offer the same versatility. The Wisconsin Badgers would be able to use Jenkins as a hybrid corner back in their system given his speed and play vision.

Regardless of the direction Wisconsin chooses to go in, there will be plenty of great options for the Badgers.


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Jarrett Guerrera is a graduate of Western New England University with a Bachelor's in English. Jarrett played rugby at the collegiate level, and has been a sports fanatic all his life. Jarrett is also a contributor for Wisconsin Sports Heroics.

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