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Miller, Jenkins Depart Iowa Football Program

The offensive line thins out a bit

Middle Tennessee v Iowa Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

Iowa’s football roster continues to thin out during a national pandemic.

Two offensive lineman — Ezra Miller and Jeff Jenkins — are looking to continue their football careers elsewhere after initially retiring from the sport for good.

Jenkins spent 2019 as the reserve center, and was likely going to spend 2020 there as well with Tyler Linderbaum still around.

But now, the itch for bloodsport has returned, leading Jenkins to enter the transfer portal. The former four-star recruit has apparently already narrowed his options down to Toledo, Bowling Green, Northern Illinois, Rutgers, South Florida, Southern Illinois and Winona State.

Meanwhile, another once-retired offensive lineman is doing the same.

Another former four-star recruit and Iowa native, Miller says he originally declared a back injury the cause for his retirement instead of making public some personal demons he was battling. It’s commendable the program would stick up for Miller in such a way, and understandable he would want to restart his football career with a clean slate elsewhere.

Short-term, neither Miller nor Jenkins was in a position to make an immediate impact on the field unless some unfortunate injuries came to fruition. Long-term, either player could’ve seen significant time their junior or senior years.

By my count, their departures leave just 13 scholarship offensive linemen on Iowa’s roster, not counting the incoming freshmen. I don’t think it’s a cause for concern short-term, but puts some pressure on the offensive line recruiting trail down the road.

Best of luck to these guys moving forward. I’ll keeping an eye on Miller.