IOWA CITY, Iowa - Tyrone Tracy Jr. and his family members voiced displeasure with how he was being utilized this season on social media. Tuesday, Iowa's junior receiver showed up in the transfer portal.
He announced his decision Wednesday.
“Tyrone is a tremendous person who has made many contributions to the success of our team over the past three seasons," Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said Wednesday in a press release. "I am saddened that he made this decision but will be fully supportive of him as he looks for a new opportunity. Tyrone is not only a good player but an individual of high character with a great family supporting him. We will miss his energy and leadership in the locker room and on the field.”
Tracy Jr. (5-11, 201) came into the season expected to help make up for the losses of Ihmir Smith-Marsette and Brandon Smith to the NFL. He'd been in the rotation for two seasons, catching 50 passes for 743 yards and four touchdowns to go with eight carries for 61 yards and a score in 21 games.
This fall, he totaled just 14 catches for 154 yards and a touchdown along with two rushes for 22 yards in 13 contests. True freshmen Keagan Johnson and Arland Bruce IV began taking Tracy Jr.'s reps as the season went on.
Tracy Jr. did not catch a pass and rushed once for five yards during the final four games. Nine of his 14 receptions in 2021 came in the first three games. He caught three passes in the final seven contests.
He showed his frustration in a since-deleted social media post.
His younger brother, Kenny Tracy, a running back at Miami of Ohio, shared his displeasure as well.
Iowa coaches, who demoted Tracy Jr. on the depth chart after showing his public frustration, considered him a program leader. He was one of three players chosen to represent it this summer at the Big Ten Media Days in his hometown of Indianapolis.
The University of Iowa athletic program recently featured Tracy Jr. in a social media promotion for his kindness and caring.
Tracy Jr. helped the Hawkeyes work through a tough time during the summer of 2020 when racial bias was found in the program. He spoke publicly about fixing the problems, took part in player committees looking for solutions and publicly praised the progress made.
He spoke about it during the summer in Indianapolis.
Tracy Jr. has two years of eligibility remaining.