Seven linebackers have left Pitt since November, with four of those (Cam Bright, Leslie Smith, Wendell Davis Jr., AJ Roberts) leaving via the transfer portal. Preston joins the group now as the fifth transfer portal entrant and eighth total linebacker loss.
Lavant, a former three-star linebacker from Crisp County in Cordele, Georgia, redshirted in 2021 and didn’t see the field. He entered the transfer portal Wednesday afternoon.
— NCAA Transfer Portal (@RivalsPortal) March 16, 2022
While Lavant wasn’t exactly a leading figure to earn increased playing time in 2022, he was one of the few scholarship linebackers at Pitt still. With Phil Campbell, Johnny Petrishen and Bright leaving Pitt’s stock of experienced linebackers dangerously thin, Mike linebacker SirVocea Dennis is the only starter returning, the depth is taking even more of a hit.
Notre Dame transfer Shayne Simon is expected to play a big role in 2022, slotting in as the Money linebacker, and Bangally Kamara, Solomon DeShields, Brandon George, converted safety Buddy Mack III and early enrollee Marquan Pope have been competing for the Star linebacker slot. Aydin Cunningham is the only other scholarship linebacker on the roster.
Pitt’s linebacker depth was already razor-thin, and with another scholarship backer lost to the portal, it’s virtually non-existent. 2022 three-star Kyle Louis will join the team over the summer, but another move could be made.
Lavant’s exit gives Pitt 85 current scholarship players, but that number will likely fluctuate as the spring and summer roll on.