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Syracuse backup running back Cooper Lutz reportedly entered the transfer portal on Monday, according to a report from 247Sports. As of early Monday afternoon, Lutz has yet to release a statement regarding his decision on Twitter or Instagram but submitted his name into the NCAA transfer portal according to several sites that track the portal.
Lutz was No. 2 on the depth chart for the bulk of the 2021 season, behind Syracuse’s star running back Sean Tucker. Lutz was SU’s special teams captain this year, finishing with nine tackles and a fumble recovery. At running back, he had 17 carries for 60 yards and a touchdown.
The Reading, Pennsylvania native shifted from inside receiver to running back for the 2020 season since the Orange needed depth at running back due to COVID-19 opt-outs. He split carries with Tucker for parts of last season, finishing with 246 rushing yards and a touchdown. That included a 100-yard rushing game against Notre Dame in SU’s season-finale, as well as an 81-yard game against Boston College earlier in the year. Lutz redshirted in 2018 and didn’t play in 2019.
Syracuse already lost running back Jarveon Howard when he entered the transfer portal midway through the season. Abdul Adams spent three years at SU and partook in the senior night walk, a sign that he will not return next year. Syracuse’s Class of 2022 includes a verbal commitment from running back LeQuint Allen, but head coach Dino Babers and the Orange may need to lean on the transfer portal to find other backup options to Tucker.
Tucker’s success during the 2021 season meant Lutz saw limited action. Tucker broke Syracuse’s single-season rushing record and finished fourth in the nation in total rushing yards (1,496).
Lutz also fumbled late in the fourth quarter against Wake Forest, a mistake that likely contributed to limited carries later in the season. He had five carries in the final six games of the season, three of which came in garbage time against NC State.
The Orange have now lost linebacker Geoff Cantin-Arku, defensive lineman Curtis Harper, quarterback Tommy DeVito, wide receiver Taj Harris, tight end Luke Benson and cornerback Adrian Cole to the transfer portal, among others.
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