Athletic tight end DeAndre Woods, who came to Vanderbilt as a four-star recruit before fighting off injury issues, is leaving the program. The gifted, but snakebitten receiver announced on Twitter Sunday he would be transferring to Old Dominion University.
The Best parts of life aren't planned. pic.twitter.com/ueFS1pFCIr— DeAndre Woods (@FlyboyWoods) January 22, 2017
A former wide receiver, Woods converted to tight end before the 2015 season and gave the Commodores a mismatch-creator up the seam. Though he only caught seven passes that season before suffering a season-ending leg injury, he averaged more than 18 yards per reception.
Those injuries limited him to just one appearance in Vanderbilt’s 6-7 season in 2016. He didn’t make a single catch last fall.
Jared Pinkney, Nathan Marcus, and Sam Dobbs split the bulk of the team’s receiving duties at tight end in his absence. All three will return in 2017, which will help mitigate Woods’ absence.
Woods will be reunited with Charles Bankins, a former Vanderbilt assistant who now coaches the Monarchs’ running backs. He’ll have at least one year of eligibility left and should be able to play immediately for Old Dominion after sitting out all but one game the 2016 season, pending an appeal to the NCAA.
He’ll likely push senior Melvin Vaughn for snaps next fall. The Monarchs didn’t use their tight ends much last fall -- Vaughn was the position’s leader with just 233 yards in 2016 — but that could all change with an impact transfer like Woods in the fold.