Miami defensive end DJ Johnson announced his decision to transfer on Tuesday via Twitter, joining three other Hurricanes players who have revealed their intentions to leave the program since the team’s Orange Bowl loss to Wisconsin on Saturday.
Johnson was Miami’s highest-rated defensive prospect for its 2017 signing class. The 6-foot-5, 240-pound lineman recorded three tackles in eight appearances as a true freshman.
Redshirt junior linebacker Darrion Owens and reserve defensive tackle Ryan Fines als0 announced their plans to transfer earlier this week.
Owens (6-foot-3, 235 pounds) appeared in 38 games and played about 20 percent of the defensive snaps for Miami during the last two seasons, according to numbers tracked by Palm Beach Post contributor Daniel Gould.
The former 3-star signee was limited by injuries, including a pair of torn menisci and a torn ACL, with the first occurring during Week 2 of the 2015 season against Florida Atlantic.
Head coach Mark Richt revealed that he spoke with Fines and said “he feels his best opportunity to get the most playing time would be at another school,” in a press release distributed by the university.
“Ryan has been a great representative of our program. We appreciate all the hard work he has put in and we wish him all the best in his future plans.”
Fines added: “I would like to thank Coach Richt, the coaching staff and my teammates for all of their support. I look forward to this new opportunity.”
In the press release, the university revealed that the redshirt sophomore is on track to graduate after the spring semester, which would allow him to play for his new team next season.
The Bradenton native recorded one tackle and a fumble recovery during seven snaps during two games in 2017.
Additionally, backup linebacker Jamie Gordinier, a third-year player, announced he was retiring from football after undergoing multiple knee surgeries.