Terrell Jackson to transfer from football program ... will Rushel Shell and Deaysean Rippy follow?

Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Yesterday, the big news was the expected transfer of running back Rushel Shell. But things didn't end there.

Defensive tackle Terrell Jackson, it was learned, intends to transfer and was granted his release. The move hurts the defensive line in terms of depth at the very least. As Bryan previously wrote, the line is pretty thin.

Jackson, you might remember, was a late pickup in head coach Paul Chryst's 2012 class. He redshirted last year and had a good chance to play a role for Pitt this year just because the team needs warm bodies on the line.

If things ended there, it would have already been a strange day. But four-star 2012 recruit Deaysean Rippy was also rumored to be on the move - possibly to West Virginia. Chris Peak says he's considering a transfer, but it's not a done deal yet. As of late last night, though, KDKA's Mike Vukovcan said it's likely. Rippy didn't factor in as a freshman last season, but he was at one point considered a 'must have' for Pitt's class. His loss really hurts a bit since he had plenty of years ahead of him and was a pretty big recruit. As I pointed out at the time, Rippy has his skeptics. But I'm never happy to lose a four-star recruit before we even get a chance to see if he can play.

It's far too early to tell what all of this means. And as the Trib's Jerry DiPaola pointed out on Wednesday, Pitt was over the scholarship limit and needed to trim their numbers before the season. But losing potentially three players Pitt could have used this season isn't a great thing for the program.

Best case scenario is obviously the return of Shell and Rippy, but even if that happened, there are still questions that are going to be asked of Chryst and the program.

Be sure to join Cardiac Hill's Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @PittPantherBlog for our regular updates on Pitt athletics.

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