MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — As expected, West Virginia redshirt freshman safety Kwantel Raines entered the NCAA transfer portal on Tuesday.
Mountaineers coach Neal Brown alluded to the likelihood that Raines would look to continue his career elsewhere in his Monday press conference.
“He’s trying to figure out what he wants to do,” Brown said Monday. “I haven’t talked to him yet.”
That conversation has apparently taken place. A program source confirmed that Raines is now in the transfer portal.
The 6-foot-2, 212-pound Raines was recruited to West Virginia from the traditional football hotbed of Aliquippa, Pa. He was to play the spur position — a safety/linebacker hybrid — in Tony Gibson’s 3-3-5 defensive scheme. Raines was moved to Will linebacker in new defensive coordinator Vic Koenning’s scheme.
With Exree Loe emerging as a consistent player at Will and freshmen Tykee Smith and Kerry Martin Jr. standing out at safety, Raines was playing sparingly. He has 10 tackles in nine games, including a career-high three against Texas Tech. Raines has not dressed out since the Red Raiders game.
Safety has been West Virginia’s most tumultuous position since the coaching change. Kenny Robinson, Derrek Pitts and JoVanni Stewart each left the program since the start of spring practice.
With the season reaching its conclusion, Raines does not figure to be the last WVU player placing his name in the portal. Backup quarterback Jack Allison has already done so, and linebacker Zach Sandwisch announced that he will play elsewhere as a graduate transfer next season.
Raines was one of the most prominent recruits in West Virginia’s 2018 class. He and Dante Stills were the only four-star signees in that class.