Speculation ran wild at the beginning of the semester when freshman receiver D.J. Donley decided to transfer from Tech. Donley was afraid his position, receiver, would not fit into new coach Paul Johnson’s triple option offense. Donley recently picked Purdue as his destination; he will be ineligible for playing this fall but can play the following season due to a NCAA rule that forces transfers to sit out a year before playing for their new team.
Last season, Purdue attempted 594 passes, fourth in the nation, for 3993 yards, No. 12 in the nation.
James Johnson was another wide receiver leaving Tech’s squad as he made the decision to quit the football team this week. Johnson has been sidelined during the spring with knee tendonitis. He has battled injuries his whole career at Tech, including the same tendonitis that sidelined him for much of the 2007 season.
James Johnson previously quit the team earlier this year, but was talked into coming back by Head Coach Paul Johnson. Johnson ranks No. 13 in Tech history with nine touchdowns and also ranks No. 15 with 1240 yards receiving in his three years on the field.
James Johnson’s announcement leaves the Jackets without six receivers from last season. Behind Demaryius Thomas and Correy Earls, Tyler Melton and walk-ons are listed on the depth chart. Greg Smith, last season’s leading receiver, has moved to A-back.
Donley and James Johnson join the growing list of Tech players that will be at different schools next year. Quarterback Taylor Bennett will transfer after he graduates, as he still has one year of eligibility left after spending three seasons playing for Tech. Tight end Colin Peek transferred to Alabama at the beginning of January.
Also, quarterback signee Jaybo Shaw, one of the first recruits to sign with Paul Johnson, was arrested earlier in the week in Hall County. Shaw is listed as the No. 10 dual-threat quarterback on Rivals.com.
Shaw was arrested at 12:30 a.m. on Sunday morning and was charged with a misdemeanor underage drinking. Shaw was later released on bond from Hall County jail as reported by the AJC.