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Badgers starting DL to enter the transfer portal

The Badgers are losing a starter to the transfer portal.

NCAA Football: Iowa at Wisconsin Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin Badgers defensive end Rodas Johnson is entering the transfer portal after five seasons with the program.

The Columbus, Ohio, native played a significant role along Wisconsin’s defensive line the past three seasons but will now look to finish his career elsewhere with just one year of eligibility remaining as a grad transfer.

Throughout the Wisconsin football program’s season, Rodas Johnson was the Badgers’ starting defensive end opposite James Thompson Jr. and played more snaps (432) than anyone else in the position group in 2023.

Johnson appeared in 38 games during his career at Wisconsin, finishing with 50 tackles, 29 pressures, 10 TFLs, 2.5 sacks, two pass deflections, and a forced fumble.

This past season, the 6-foot-2, 295-pound DL appeared in 12 games and registered 19 tackles, 3.0 TFLs, a career-high 14 pressures, and 0.5 sacks for the Badgers defense under position coach Greg Scruggs.

According to Pro Football Focus, Johnson finished with a grade of 67.2 this past season, which is considered above average.

He initially committed to the Wisconsin football team as a member of the 2019 recruiting class under Paul Chryst. He was considered a high-three-star recruit and held 27 scholarship offers, most notably from Penn State, Florida, Michigan, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, and Texas, among others.

With the loss of Johnson, an already lackluster Wisconsin Badgers defensive line group becomes even more thin. He is now the ninth known scholarship player to enter the transfer portal this offseason.