Four Bulls enter NCAA transfer portal

Graduate student linebacker Antonio Grier is one of four players who will continue their collegiate football journey in a new uniform next season. USF ATHLETICS PHOTO

Following USF football’s final loss of the season in the War on I-4, four players entered the transfer portal Monday.

Headlining the outgoing class of transfers is graduate student safety Vincent “Smoke” Davis. He retired in July due to a neck injury, but announced his return to football in a post on Twitter.

Davis last suited up in 2021 and made 68 tackles and 3.5 tackles for loss in 12 games.

The second defensive player to leave through the portal is graduate student linebacker Antonio Grier. He was a preseason All-AAC first-team member and had 21 tackles in his final season, 10 of which came in USF’s Sept. 17 loss to then-No. 18 Florida. He took time away from the team after learning of his father’s passing, missing the Bulls’ final eight games.

A two-time member of the All-AAC second team, the linebacker leaves a gaping hole in a South Florida defense that has consistently struggled this season. In 2021, Grier started all 12 games and finished with a team-high of 92 tackles and eight tackles for loss.

Grier carved out an illustrious career as one of the most productive defensive players the program has seen, racking up 230 tackles, 23.5 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, five forced fumbles and two interceptions through 35 games at USF.

Due to only playing three games this past season, Grier has one year of eligibility remaining as a graduate transfer.

On the offensive side of the field, redshirt sophomore wide receiver Christian Helms decided to enter the portal. Helms has not been on the field since joining USF in 2019 and seeks other opportunities on a new team.

Another player departing the receiver room is sophomore Holden Willis. In 2022, he suited up for nine games and got more reps toward the final stretch of the year, totaling 44 receiving yards and three receptions in the Bulls’ final two contests.

In 17 career games at USF, Willis had 112 receiving yards, eight receptions and one receiving touchdown.