–> Sundays have seemed like the time for the Gophers to add commitments from the transfer portal, TCU CB Jai’Onte’ McMillan was the latest to do so.
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With FIU DT Jordan Guerad and Indiana RB Trent Howland both flipping their commitments to other schools, scholarships opened up for the Gophers. After visiting Minnesota over the weekend, TCU transfer DB Jai’Onte’ McMillan was the latest to accept a scholarship offer from the Maroon & Gold. McMillan was a former walk-on in Fort Worth, he will now look to make a name for himself in Dinkytown.
— Tony Liebert (@TonyLiebert) December 17, 2023
Who is Jai’Onte’ McMillan?:
Jai’Onte’ McMillan grew up in Conyers, Georgia, a small suburb very close to Atlanta of 17,508 people. He made a name for himself at Rockdale County High School, which competes in 6A football, which is the largest level in Georgia. Despite being one of the best playmakers in the state with 4+ INTs his senior season, he did not earn a D1 scholarship and he decided to accept a preferred walk-on (PWO) spot at TCU.
In 2020, McMillan redshirted despite playing a handful of snaps on special teams. The following season he made his collegiate defensive debut (3 snaps), which grew to 84 defensive snaps in 2022 and 80 snaps this season. His role with the Horned Frogs was predominately on special teams with 339 snaps in his career coming in that area. He will now look to grow as a defensive back with coaches Nick Monroe and Danny Collins with two seasons of eligibility remaining.
- Scouting Report:
Listed at 5-foot-11, 190 pounds, McMillan has fairly prototypical measurables for a D1 defensive. With only 167 career snaps he hasn’t had much defensive tape, but he is a very athletic player that has some interesting upside. TCU was the National Runner Up in 2022, so they obviously had a lot of talent in their secondary. Nevertheless, McMillan comes to Dinkytown as a bit of an unknown. He originally played safety in high school, so with a lot of question marks at the position, the Gophers could get creative and try him out there.
**High School Highlights**
Jai’Onte’ McMillan is a very interesting addition from the portal for the Gophers. With only 167 defensive snaps through four seasons of college football, it would be a bit naive to know truly how good he is or how good he can be. I am sure McMillan had full scholarship opportunities at the D2 level, but he opted to bet on himself and walk on to TCU. Given the fact that Minnesota has already brought in Bucknell transfer CB Ethan Robinson and Justin Walley is returning in 2024, I would not be surprised if McMillan plays a little safety. Incoming true freshman Koi Perich’s decision between Ohio State and Minnesota is a big potential move, but Coleman Bryson, Darius Green and Aidan Gousby currently on the roster are no home runs, so I think McMillan’s services could be better used at safety. Ultimately, you can never have too many athletes and McMillan is a Big Ten-level athlete that will provide tremendous special teams coverage at the end of the day.
What is next?:
As soon as the Gophers seemed to figure out the portal to an extent, two players flipped and two new players joined. While all that is going on Early National Signing Day is only days away on Wednesday, Dec. 20. There are plenty of twists and turns that will continue this offseason for the Gophers. Jai’Onte’ McMillan is only one of many and that is just the norm of the college football offseason in 2023.