LSU Football defenders Christian Brathwaite and Jeremiah Hughes enter the portal

Nov 25, 2023; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA;  LSU Tigers linebacker Greg Penn III (30) reacts to
Nov 25, 2023; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA; LSU Tigers linebacker Greg Penn III (30) reacts to / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The LSU Football team has lost its fourth and fifth members of the 2023 signing class in this transfer period losing linebacker Christian Brathwaite and Jeremiah Hughes as they join Khai Prean, Jaxon Howard, and Ryan Yaites in the Transfer Portal. Brathwaite was a four-star recruit in the 2023 signing class rated as the 28th-ranked linebacker in the class. The True freshman saw action in five games recording two tackles in 2023. Hughes was ranked as the 70th ranked cornerback in the class as a three-star recruit playing in 13 games as a freshman.

The move comes as a bit of a surprise as Brathwaite saw an increased role down the stretch of 2023 but, may be indicative of where he stood on the depth chart. True freshmen Tylen Singleton and Xavier Atkins had impressive springs and may have passed Brathwaite on Kelly's depth chart. LSU also returns Harold Perkins, Whit Weeks, Greg Penn III, and Ashton Stamps all of whom would've received tons of snaps.

Jeremiah Hughes also was buried on the depth chart behind several returning cornerbacks. During practice Hughes was seeing some run with the second team defense but, spent a majority of his time with the third unit.

Thus far in the transfer portal, Brian Kelly has truly only lost depth pieces as Jaxon Howard, Ryan Yaites, Khai Prean, and Brathwaite would've seen time as depth and special teams players but, had little chance of starting. The departures are also indicative of how well the 2024 transfer class is performing this Spring with freshmen climbing up the depth chart.

LSU Football: Are high-caliber starters on the way?

The LSU Football team now has three scholarships open while a fourth may be on the way with a potential medical retirement. The LSU Football team has been active in recruiting high caliber transfers on the defensive line. The loss of a few younger pieces may allow the LSU Football team to now pursue potential experienced playmakers in the secondary and at running back. Whoever LSU brings in this transfer period will have a massive opportunity to start right away elevating this rosters College Football Playoff Chances.

More LSU News: