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Arizona Wildcats lose running back Daniel Jenkins to transfer

Jenkins, who recently graduated, projected to be Arizona's second-string running back next season.

Matt Kartozian-US PRESSWIRE

Arizona Wildcats running back Daniel Jenkins, who had one more year of eligibility left in Tucson, will transfer out of the program. He met with Rich Rodriguez earlier in the week, and then informed the coach of his decision to leave. It will be a tough blow for the 'Cats.

Jenkins, who originally committed to former coach Mike Stoops as a four-star recruit, has been buried on the depth chart in recent years by Keola Antolin and breakout star Ka'Deem Carey. Given that Carey figures to be the workhorse yet again in 2013, Jenkins felt that his best change to take his football career to the next level would be to change schools.

Here is what Jenkins said Thursday to Anthony Gimino of the Tucson Citizen:

"Coach Rod, he was heart-felt. He understood where I was coming from.

"He definitely let me know that his wishes were for me to stay. But he understood that it was a personal decision. This has nothing to do with the institution or the coaches or every experience I had here. We definitely left on good terms."

In addition to Jenkins transferring, quarterback Matt Scott's graduation means the 'Cats will lose two of their top-three rushers from last season. The senior-to-be carried the ball 67 times for 293 yards and two touchdowns in 2012. Jared Baker, who will be a sophomore next season, will likely enter the season as Arizona's No. 2 running back on the depth chart. Baker carried the ball 20 times for 85 yards and a touchdown as a freshman.