EL PASO, TEXAS (KTSM) – UTEP defensive backs Dennis Barnes, Broderick Harrell and Dy’Vonne Inyang all entered the NCAA Transfer Portal on Friday morning, a source confirmed to KTSM.
Matt Howe of 247 Sports was the first to report the news on Friday.
The decisions from the trio of important defensive players came as the Miners still have one game remaining on the 2020 schedule. All three made their choices official with statements posted to Twitter.
Later on Friday night, UTEP’s top cornerback Duron Lowe also announced his intentions to transfer, meaning half of the Miners’ 2-deep in the secondary is no longer with the team.
The transfers could hurt UTEP in the long run, as all three players contributed heavily in 2020. In the short term, if the Miners do play their final game against North Texas on Dec. 12, UTEP’s depth in the secondary will take a huge hit with three members of the two-deep no longer available.
Inyang totaled 32 tackles, 2 tackles for loss and forced 2 fumbles in 2020; Barnes had 22 tackles, 2 for loss with a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and 5 pass break-ups; and Harrell had 32 tackles, 2 for loss with fumble recovery on the season. Inyang and Harrell played in all seven games for UTEP in 2020, while Barnes played in six, missing the Nov. 14 UTSA game for undisclosed reasons.
Earlier this year, the NCAA ruled that the 2020 season would not count against the eligibility of any fall student-athletes, no matter the amount of games they played in. That means all three players that entered the portal on Friday will keep a year of eligibility.
Inyang was a senior in 2020, meaning he will have one year left to play at his next stop; Barnes and Harrell were both juniors, giving them two more years of eligibility wherever they land next season.
UTEP has not practiced all week after the Miners canceled its games with Rice and Southern Miss due to what was thought to be a slough of positive tests. UTEP has since learned that almost all of them were false positives.
The Miners say they will return to practice on Monday to prepare to face North Texas on Dec. 12. If and when they do, they’ll be without three of their top defensive players.