Taj Davis made one of the biggest plays in recent Husky history last year when he caught a dime from Michael Penix Jr. in a narrow window along the sideline in the 4th quarter against Oregon and took it to the house for a game-tying score. That will be one of the last memories for Davis as a Husky as he announced this morning that he will be entering the transfer portal with 2 years of eligibility remaining.
UW WR Taj Davis announces on IG that he’ll enter the transfer portal pic.twitter.com/V6HZHWQrc7— Mike Vorel (@mikevorel) April 28, 2023
The 6’2 Davis entered the program out of Upland, California as a 3-star recruit in the class of 2019. He redshirted his first year in the program and then took leave during the COVID 2020 year. That certainly lowered expectations that Davis would ever become a major contributor but he took advantage of injuries in the WR room in the cursed 2021 season to play a major role and finished that year with 26 catches for 329 yards and 1 TD. Davis became UW’s most reliable player in tight spots as he caught 6 of 9 contested catches per Pro Football Focus.
Last year though Davis saw a little less of the field with Odunze, McMillan, and Polk missing just one game combined. That moved Davis into a 4th/5th receiver role alongside Giles Jackson. Davis still had big moments such as the catch against Oregon and finished with 277 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns.
With all 3 of the receivers above him on the depth chart returning plus the transfer back in of Germie Bernard and a leap by Denzel Boston it seems likely that Davis would at best be again the 4th option. Next season would see Jackson graduate and Odunze/McMillan likely head to the NFL but that is another year of waiting and potentially still ending up the 4th option in the offense if Bernard/Boston continue to improve. If Davis were to end up at a program closer to home like California it’s not unreasonable to think he could carve out a spot as a #2 receiver right away.
This is unfortunately the result of building one of the most competitive wide receiver rooms in the country. Davis is a good player who will always be loved by Husky nation for his play against the Ducks. He’s almost certainly going to wind up on his feet and put up bigger numbers than he could have at Washington just by virtue of snap counts.
There’s a world in which UW suffers a string of injuries and Davis’ transfer ends up being lamented come the fall much the way Jacobe Covington’s transfer was particularly painful in hindsight. But if everything goes according to plan then UW will have a few options comparable to Davis already set to come off the bench and it shouldn’t lead to much of a drop-off on the field thanks to UW’s ridiculous receiver depth.
Davis becomes the 2nd portal entry for the Huskies during the spring window, joining LB Demario King. OL Owen Prentice also retired from football during the last month. That puts Washington at 84 scholarships and opens up a potential spot for an addition through the portal. Although UW has neither a kicker nor punter on scholarship right now so it’s possible they choose to use it in that way or to reward a walk-on linebacker such as Drew Fowler.
Best of luck to Taj at his next home and hopefully he’s able to find a spot where he’ll get all the playing time he deserves!
TD WASHINGTON !— TBP College Football (@thebluepennant) November 13, 2022
QB Michael Penix Jr trouve WR Taj Davis qui convertit cette passe en un TD de 62 yards !
Oregon 34, Washington 34