Washington’s spring practice schedule hasn’t given much time to the football players planning on potentially making a move. When the NCAA created the one-time free transfer rule last year they put a deadline into place of May 1st. That means that any player wishing for immediate eligibility had to have their name in the transfer portal by that date. Given UW’s spring preview took place on April 30th it means Husky football players only had an additional 24 hours to make that decision about their future.
With that short turnaround it means we are expecting several entries into the transfer portal to come out over the next few days. Players needed to enter the portal by May 1st but it can take up to 48 hours for them to actually be placed into the system so until Tuesday night we can’t be sure that everyone has been listed.
A player entering the transfer portal does not necessarily have to leave. By entering the portal they are giving up their scholarship at their current school. However if they decide they don’t have the options they thought they might, decide they want to return to UW, and the coaching staff welcomes them back then they can re-join the team. If instead they wait until after May 1st to enter the portal then they are guaranteed to have to sit out next fall which will likely make it even harder to find another power conference school willing to have them count against their scholarship limit when another transfer who was in the portal earlier has a shot to see the field.
Given that situation there’s a chance we see some names enter the transfer portal who aren’t 100% sold on leaving but are leaning that way and want to keep their options open. A reminder that players don’t have access to enter themselves into the portal. They have to meet with UW compliance and have the process explained to them and only after that process does the compliance person enter them into the portal.
Washington with their coaching change in the offseason made them particularly ripe for potential transfers out of the program. For the most part they were able to keep the roster intact but even in a normal year there are players who didn’t have spring ball go the way they wanted. Now you can throw in the staff changes plus players looking for NIL money from other programs. Here is our list of players that have entered the portal so far since spring practices began and we’ll update it as more names come out.
Scholarship Players Entered: 2
Walk-ons Entered: 3
Caleb Berry- RB (5/3/22)
The position on the Husky roster that seemed the most obviously ripe for attrition was the running back spot. Part of the reason the team couldn’t have a true scrimmage during the Spring Preview was that the running backs were ravaged by injury. In addition to that the new coaching staff has been vocal that they were anticipating more talent in the running back room than they get when they arrived. Part of that is that the old and new staffs appear to have diametrically opposed views on the spot. The old staff wanted bruising backs capable of running between the tackles and the new staff wants versatility and pass catching ability.
Berry appears to have been caught in the middle of that battle. There’s no question that he thought he would be a Husky for a long time. He got a purple W tattoo on his arm which I’m sure he’ll unfortunately have some regrets about now. Berry tested positive for COVID just before the first spring practice and did not participate during the spring preview.
Washington has brought in 3 backs through the transfer portal since Coach DeBoer arrived (Aaron Dumas from New Mexico, Wayne Taulapapa from Virginia, and Will Nixon from Nebraska) plus moved Camden Sirmon from QB to RB. That despite the fact that the RB room appeared to be full before that point.
The move on from Washington for Berry unfortunately makes complete sense for his career. He’s just not the type of back that is going to be prioritized by the new offensive staff. It’s unfortunate that we’ll never get to see him breakout in a Husky uniform but hopefully he’ll find a better fit at his next stop and we wish him the best of luck.
I’m thankful for the opportunity to play for the University of Washington moving forward I’m excited to see what’s in stored for me on my new journey! pic.twitter.com/p18UtZE7r7— ℨℨ (@Chos1n) May 3, 2022
Brody Reese- DL (5/3/22)
Walk-on defensive lineman Brody Reese entered the transfer portal. Reese was most recently listed at 6’2, 301 lbs out of Hillsboro, Oregon. He originally committed to the Huskies over non-FBS offers to San Diego and Western Oregon. Reese did not see any game action in his lone season with the Huskies.
Washington DL Brody Reese has entered the transfer portal.— Sidelines Transfer Portal (@SSN_Portal) May 3, 2022
Jacobe Covington- CB (5/2/22)
This would’ve been a surprise before Saturday when Covington was one of only a few players who were not there in-person for the spring preview. The former 4-star recruit looked like he was in position to be the next highly rated DB to star for the Huskies as one of the headliners that Jimmy Lake was able to keep committed after taking over as head coach. He redshirted in 2020 but played 24 defensive snaps in garbage time for Washington this past year. With all 3 starting corners for the Huskies departing for the NFL it looked Covington could be penciled in as a starter.
Covington though clearly was passed up on the depth chart by former walk-on Mishael Powell who has locked in one of the starting outside corner spots. Coach DeBoer also brought in grad transfer Jordan Perryman who seemingly beat out Covington for the other corner spot. With the entire defensive coaching staff that recruited him gone and needing an injury or a year of waiting to likely start it appears Covington will instead try to find a new school that provides him with another opportunity. It’s an unfortunate blow to Washington’s depth at the corner position as well as their long-term outlook there since Covington would have still been a part of the rotation and again seemed a reasonably likely starter in 2023 if he stayed.
Meki Pei- S (4/25/22)
Pei was a walk-on for the Huskies but there was reason to think that he might be able to make a name for himself after earning Defensive MVP honors at the Polynesian bowl. However, Pei never saw a defensive snaps in his 2 years with the program although he earned 47 special teams snaps. The Hawai’i native will hopefully get a chance to earn a scholarship at another program.
Kasen Kinchen- CB (4/18/22)
Kinchen was a walk-on who seemed likely to be the next in the line of former UW walk-ons that rose to prominence. Coming out of Lake Stevens he earned a 0.8423 rating in the 247 Sports composite which is generally good enough to earn a scholarship at every Pac-12 school. However, Washington ran out of room in the class and Kinchen still decided to stay home and play for the west coast DBU. Mishael Powell though ended up being the corner to rapidly ascend from walk-on to starter rather than Kinchen and he is now in the portal. Hopefully Kinchen finds a spot where he can earn a scholarship without having to venture too far afield.