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Former No. 1 in-state Gophers target Jaxon Howard enters Transfer Portal

LSU sophomore LB Jaxon Howard entered the NCAA Transfer Portal Wednesday.



Former Robbinsdale Cooper High School standout Jaxon Howard announced Wednesday that he intends to enter the transfer portal. The 6-foot-4, LB appeared in 75 career snaps for LSU through two seasons with the program. Coming out of high school, 247sports ranked him as the No. 131 overall player in the country — one of the highest-ranked national recruits to ever come out of the state. His final decision out of high school came down to Minnesota, Miami (FL) and Michigan before settling on the Tigers.

What’s Next?

Jaxon is the son of former Vikings DE Willie Howard, who also coached him in high school football at Robbinsdale High School. Willie is still currently the school’s head coach and assistant principal. Jaxon has plenty of connections to the state with a ton of family still residing here.

With an offer from nearly every major conference school coming out of high school, it was a major win that Minnesota was even mentioned in Howard’s final choices. From my understanding, he strongly considered staying home and committing to the Gophers, but there is no denying that LSU and the SEC have things to offer that the University of Minnesota cannot.

But, the fact that his father still lives and works in the area and has a very good relationship with Minnesota leads me to believe that the Maroon & Gold will be in the mix again as he looks for a home in the Transfer Portal. Jaxon’s cousin Phillip Howard played five seasons and that clearly would build trust with the staff.

The Spring College Football Transfer Portal window opens on April 16 and will close on April 30. Minnesota was active last year adding four scholarship players, but losing two. You can never have too many players along the defensive line, so while it’s certainly not a position of need, I would imagine that Fleck and his staff would make room for a player of Howard’s caliber.

A lifelong Minnesota sports fan, Tony Liebert is one of the biggest voices in Gophers sports coverage and the owner of Within the realm of credentialed media, Tony refined his abilities while serving as the lead writer for Gopherhole and as the sports editor at the Minnesota Daily during various stages of his career. Work has been featured on Bleacher Report, Yardbarker, and more.