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The Kansas State football team’s top immediate recruiting priority is clear.
The Wildcats want to add an experienced defensive back to their roster who will be ready to contribute next season and help provide much-needed depth in their secondary.
It seems K-State has identified at least one player capable of filling that role on the transfer market, as the Wildcats extended a scholarship offer to Southeast Missouri State senior transfer Bydarrius Knigthen on Thursday.
Knighten is a 6-foot and 197-pound defensive back who has spent the past four seasons playing for the Redhawks. And he was a key member of their defense. Knighten made 262 tackles and six interceptions while playing at the FCS level. Now he is looking to finish out his college career at the FBS level with his lone remaining year of eligibility.
K-State coach Chris Klieman has found success with FCS transfers in the past, including tight end Briley Moore, who made the jump from Northern Iowa to K-State last season.
It didn’t take long for K-State to show interest in Knighten, a two-time All-Ohio Valley Conference defender. He entered his name in the NCAA transfer portal on Wednesday.
But K-State will face competition for Knighten. At least two other power-conference teams have also offered him a scholarship, according to his Twitter account: Utah and Washington State.
The Wildcats could use an extra body in their secondary after Malachi Mitchell entered the transfer portal on Thursday.
Mitchell was a redshirt freshman defensive back who will depart K-State before playing in a single game. He was arrested by Riley County Police for suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs/alcohol earlier this month.
Mitchell is a 6-foot, 187-pound defender from Mansfield, Texas. He first arrived on campus last year as a three-star recruit, choosing the Wildcats over other Big 12 schools Kansas and Texas Tech.