Blanchard granted release, will transfer

By Liesje Powers | Multimedia Editor Former Baylor defensive back Travon Blanchard make a tackle against a Boise State wide receiver. Blanchard has transferred to Texas A&M-Commerce. Photo credit: Liesje Powers

Suspended Baylor senior defensive back Travon Blanchard was released by Baylor Saturday morning and will transfer to Texas A&M-Commerce to finish out his collegiate football career as a walk-on, per a statement he released.

Blanchard released a statement at 3:28 p.m. Saturday on his twitter account, informing the public of his intentions to leave the school.

“I have decided to transfer from Baylor University,” Blanchard said. “I would like to thank all the Baylor coaches I’ve had, along with the support staff and administration for all they did for me the past four years. I would also like to personally thank all the great fans of Baylor nation for all of their fantastic and unwavering support during my time there. I have recently decided to walk-on at Texas A&M-Commerce to play my senior year and further my college education. This will be my only statement regarding this matter.”

In February, a woman accused Blanchard of multiple acts of violence against her and requested a protective order from a judge.

Shortly after the accusations were made, Baylor suspended Blanchard and he has not practiced with the team since, according to ESPN.

In July, Blanchard was arrested on a misdemeanor assault charge stemming from the events that led to his suspension, according to ESPN.

Blanchard’s attorney, Michelle Tuegel, issued a statement Saturday regarding the situation.

“Travon Blanchard is excited for the opportunity to continue his education and athletic endeavors at Texas A&M Commerce,” Teugel said in an email to the Lariat. “Travon maintains that he is not guilty of what he has been accused of. The Baylor Title IX process is still ongoing and he will continue to cooperate in that process and looks forward to clearing his name and to his day in court.”

Because his Title IX case is still ongoing, Blanchard is not able to be with the Baylor football team, according to ESPN Central Texas’ David Smoak.

Texas A&M-Commerce, a Division II school, released a statement Saturday regarding Blanchard’s transfer.

“We welcome Travon Blanchard to our Lion Athletics family,” a Texas A&M-Commerce spokesman said in a statement. “As with any transfer, we thoroughly investigate circumstances and communicate with a wide net. We are confident that Travon walking on to our program this season is a positive step for both him and our program.”

Blanchard is a two time All-Big 12 honoree with 23 starts in the last two seasons and 37 overall games played, which would rank third among the current roster. During his sophomore campaign, Blanchard led the Big 12 with 0.31 forced fumbles per game.

Blanchard will play in the Lions’ season opener against North Alabama at 6 p.m. Thursday in Florence, Al.