Texas Tech managed to get another addition to an already heralded secondary on Tuesday when they landed an in-conference transfer in senior defensive back John Bonney, a player that comes to the Red Raiders from fellow Big 12 member Texas.
There were reports early Tuesday afternoon that the Longhorns defensive back was in Lubbock and possibly looking to transfer immediately. The football program at Texas Tech confirmed the news soon thereafter via Twitter.
The news is striking not only because it’s rare for players to transfer this far into fall camp, but also because rarely do Division I football players transfer within their own conference.
It’s common from head coaches to try and block players from making such moves, but Texas head coach Tom Herman made the decision to not block Bonney’s transfer. According to Anwar Richardson of Orangebloods.com, sources he talked to said Herman wanted Bonney to do what was in his best interests:
I heard former Texas DB John Bonney will likely play for Texas Tech as a grad transfer. Texas football coach Tom Herman could have blocked the transfer to a conference opponent. When I asked why Herman did not limit Bonney's options, I was told, "He just wants John to be happy."
— Anwar Richardson (@AnwarRichardson) August 14, 2018
While at Texas, Bonney logged 15 career starts, but struggled throughout his career to consistently hold down a first string spot in the secondary. Herman brought in a highly rated group of defensive backs in January, something that has reportedly created increased competition in fall camp for the Longhorns.
Whether that is related to this decision to transfer, Texas will now be without some experience in their defensive backfield.
The addition is good news for Texas Tech, where Bonney will surely add to the depth of a Red Raider secondary that already had a lot of returning experience and two players on the Preseason All-Big 12 Defense. The former Longhorn will be able to play for head coach Kliff Kingsbury immediately, though it’s unclear what his role will be at Texas Tech.