Gophers Transfer Commit Flips to Notre Dame

Photo: Tim O’Meara - The Harvard Crimson

The 2022 Minnesota Gophers football team, especially on defense, will rely heavily on transfer portal acquisitions. PJ Fleck and his coaching staff have out pulled multiple cornerbacks and defensive linemen who they need to step in an contribute, if the upcoming season is going to be branded a success.

Unfortunately, one of their more talented portal pulls of the last cycle, Chris Smith (Harvard), announced today that he had flipped his commitment from Minnesota to Notre Dame. Suddenly, the Gophers have another hole to re-fill.

Interior Defensive Line Takes Hit

Chris Smith looked like the most talented incoming transfer of three total defensive tackles the Minnesota Gophers brought in from the portal this offseason. Notre Dame’s interest says as much. But Smith’s (.8700) 247Sports Transfer Portal rating is also much higher than both Clemson’s Darnell Jefferies (.8300) and Vanderbilt’s Lorenza Surgers (.8000).

The Gophers have recruited defensive and offensive lines hard since Fleck arrived on campus so there are some talented youngsters like Trill Carter and Devon Eastern who could benefit from Smith’s change of mind. We could also see another dip into the transfer portal. After Spring Games start wrapping up over the next few weeks, we’ll see the transfer portal heat back up.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan