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After entering the transfer portal on Sunday, Syracuse’s former No. 1 wide receiver Taj Harris has already received offers from six schools, according to his Twitter.
As of Wednesday afternoon, those include Southeastern Conference schools Mississippi State, Texas A&M and Kentucky, the Pac-12’s Utah, along with Western Kentucky and Temple. The Bulldogs — the same school which current SU quarterback Garrett Shrader transferred out of — were the first team that Harris posted about on Tuesday afternoon.
Harris was Syracuse’s top wideout during the 2020 and 2021 seasons, and the No. 2 behind NFL prospect Trishton Jackson during 2019. Head coach Dino Babers labeled Harris as a player he expected to break SU records. But Harris’ decision to transfer midseason came after playing three games with the Orange this year, meaning he still has two years of eligibility remaining (the NCAA counts anything over four games as a year of eligibility).
Harris’ decision means no Power Five school has lost more players to the transfer portal since the start of training camp than Syracuse. Backup running back Jarveon Howard declared for the portal days before Harris, and the Orange lost tight end Landon Morris and offensive lineman Cody Shear to the portal before the start of the season.
“The young people now have control over their own things. They can make their own decisions, and they’re making decisions that they feel are best for them,” Babers said when asked whether there was concern over midseason departures. “We need to honor that, and that’s just the sign of the times.”
Harris tweeted that he wasn’t currently accepting interview requests and has yet to speak publicly since entering the portal.
When asked about his departure, the wide receiver’s teammates repeated the same message on Tuesday: The decision was Harris’, and they respect it. Tommy DeVito said he’s spoken with Harris since the latter’s departure but wouldn’t comment on their conversation. Courtney Jackson said that the team didn’t really see Harris’ decision coming.
On Thursday before Harris sat out from SU’s matchup with Florida State, he tweeted “I know my worth.”
Wide receiver Damien Alford said the team misses Harris but is confident it has the pieces to move on without him. “We scored 30 points vs. Florida State at Florida State, and last time I checked he wasn’t there,” Babers said when asked about replacing Harris’ production. The head coach also spoke about the wide receiver depth and said he was sure the opportunities presented to others would fill the “void.”
Players who enter the transfer portal can return to their original team if they don’t reach an agreement with another school, but their original school must agree to take them back. Babers said entering the portal was what Harris felt was best for him. The head coach made no indication of Harris possibly returning but wasn’t explicitly asked about whether he’d take Harris back should the situation arise.
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