Kansas football: Jayhawks add much-needed defensive depth in transfer portal

Devin Dye and Dylan Wudke committed to Kansas football via the portal yesterday
Sep 09, 2023; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Xavier Johnson (0) protects the ball
Sep 09, 2023; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Xavier Johnson (0) protects the ball / Brooke LaValley / USA TODAY NETWORK

Yesterday, Lance Leipold and the Kansas football program made a splash in the transfer portal. Utah State transfer Devin Dye and former Youngstown State Penguin Dylan Wudke committed to the Jayhawks one week before they partake in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl against UNLV.

Dye, the son of former MLB star Jermaine, attended JUCO for two years before transferring to Utah State for the 2023 season. He finished fourth on the team in total tackles with 81 while also snagging two interceptions and leading the team with seven passes defended. The safety has two years of eligibility remaining and should immediately step into an impact role with Kansas.

Alongside OJ Burroughs and Marvin Grant, Dye should be extremely effective in the open field. Losing Kenny Logan Jr. hurts but adding Dye slightly softens the blow. Like Logan, he is a terrific tackler and could be one of the defense's most important players by 2025.

Meanwhile, Wudke will spend his final collegiate season in Lawrence after recording 33 total tackles and four sacks in 2023. He was tied for the team lead in sacks this year. With the departures of defensive end depth Patrick Joyner Jr. and Hayden Hatcher, he could find himself on the field very often.

The addition of Wudke is a short-term solution for Kansas, a team with highly touted recruits like Deshawn Warner and Dakyus Brinkley set to become major contributors. The hope is that he can provide veteran guidance and compete with younger guys like Dylan Brooks for snaps. At his size, Wudke figures to be an early-down defensive end.

One week after picking up a commitment from former Iowa State Cyclones tight end DeShawn Hanika, Leipold and Co. filled some holes defensively. Kansas is losing a lot of talent to graduation this year, and with the looming decisions of standouts like Austin Booker, Cobee Bryant, and Jereme Robinson, the Jayhawks at least have some comfort by adding this portal duo.