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D.J. Matthews enters NCAA Transfer Portal

Florida State wide receiver D.J. Matthews (7) returning a punt during the second half of an NCAA football game against Boise State on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019 in Tallahassee, Fla. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough)
Florida State wide receiver D.J. Matthews (7) returning a punt during the second half of an NCAA football game against Boise State on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019 in Tallahassee, Fla. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough)(Gary McCullough | AP)
Published: Sep. 15, 2020 at 12:23 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (NOLES 247) - Just one loss into the season, the Florida State Seminoles are seeing a player depart the program. On Tuesday morning, wide receiver D.J. Matthews entered the NCAA transfer portal, a 247Sports source has confirmed.

A four-star recruit in the 2017 recruiting class, Matthews had 809 yards and five touchdowns receiving through his first three seasons with the Seminoles. He did not play in the season opener

As of August 26, Matthews had been away from the program due to COVID-19 restrictions. He tested positive for COVID-19 earlier in August, thus leading to a quarantine away from the team.

“He is not [practicing]. And D.J. and I have talked last week sometime kind of going through his process, but he’s not out at practice,” Florida State head coach Mike Norvell said.

According to Noles247, Florida State has been transparent in confirming players who have opted out of the 2020 season due to concerns over the virus — defensive end Jamarcus Chatman and defensive tackle Dennis Briggs decided earlier this preseason that they would not play this year — and Norvell has stated in recent weeks that he’s had some discussions with an unnamed player about possibility of opting out.

“We’re supporting guys in what they want to do and making sure they’re making the best decisions for themselves in what they want to accomplish as well,” Norvell said, according to Noles247.

The loss of Matthews in the offense means that the Seminoles and quarterback James Blackman have one less weapon to utilize on the offensive side of the ball. And after its performance last Saturday, it looks like Florida State could use all the help it can get on offense.

The Seminoles lost to Georgia Tech at home on Saturday, 16-13. In the game, Blackman was 23-of-43 for 198 yards and one touchdown, as well as one interception. His leading receiver in the game was Jashaun Corbin, who had just 55 yards on eight catches.

Coming out of Trinity Christian Academy, Matthews was one of the most sought-after wide receiving options in the 2017 recruiting class. Schools like Alabama, Clemson, LSU, Tennessee and countless others offered Matthews a scholarship. But he chose to go to Florida State instead. Unfortunately for Matthews, he didn’t have as much success with the Seminoles as he could have at another school.

Matthews' most successful season in Tallahassee was his freshman year, when the Seminoles went 7-6 and won the Independence Bowl in Jimbo Fisher’s final season. In Matthews' three seasons at Florida State, he saw his teams go a combined 18-20 and going 1-1 in bowl games. Matthews looks for better success at his next stop and to hopefully make a quick impact. Wherever he ends up next, Matthews will be a graduate transfer, thus allowing him to play immediately.

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