Clemson Football expected some players to transfer out and others to move on to the NFL. They learned Wednesday that one of the players they thought would go pro might actually transfer to another school.
Safety Andrew Mukuba has entered his name into the transfer portal.
Mukuba was thought by many to be a strong candidate to turn pro, and that might still be a possibility. There is a chance that he could still declare for the NFL Draft, and is simply trying to keep his options open.
Mukuba was a unique recruit for Clemson as one of the very few players who committed to the Tigers without ever setting foot on campus due to visitation restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mukuba made the risk seem minimal with excellent play during his freshman season in 2020. He took a step back in 2022 but was often playing the corner position instead of safety. Several injuries limited the Tigers’ options at corner that season, and Mukuba stepped in.
Andrew Mukuba can still declare for the NFL Draft
Mukuba found a good compromise in 2023 playing the nickel/safety hybrid position in a 4-2-5 formation for the Clemson defense. He excelled at times.
One of the reasons Mukuba might have entered the portal to keep his options open could be the emergence of Khalil Barnes. Barnes entered the rotation early and then stepped into the starting lineup when multiple safeties were injured and missed games.
Barnes made a name for himself as a playmaker, which was highlighted in the Palmetto Bowl. Barnes had two takeaways – one fumble recovery and one interception – in South Carolina’s first three offensive plays of the evening. He returned the fumble for a touchdown.
Mukuba will likely proceed with getting feedback from scouts and then make a decision to either enter the draft or transfer to another program.