Ex-Penn State Football Defender Announces Transfer Portal Pick

After spending three seasons with the Penn State football program, defensive lineman Davon Townley has announced his decision to transfer to Missouri State University. The former four-star recruit from Virginia entered the transfer portal during the spring window, and his commitment to the FCS program in Springfield, Missouri marks the next chapter in his college football journey.

Townley’s path began as one of the top defensive line prospects in the 2020 recruiting class. Despite offers from numerous Power Five schools, he ultimately chose to join James Franklin’s Nittany Lions in Happy Valley. While at Penn State, Townley saw limited playing time, appearing in just 12 games across three seasons and recording six total tackles.

A Closer Look at Davon Townley’s College Football Journey

Coming out of high school, Townley was regarded as a disruptive force along the defensive line. At 6’6″ and 260 pounds, he possessed an ideal blend of size and athleticism that had scouts raving about his potential. His senior year at Varina High School was particularly impressive, as he racked up 78 tackles, 12 sacks, and 18 tackles for loss, cementing his status as a four-star recruit and one of the top players in Virginia.

Despite his lofty recruit rankings, Townley’s playing time at Penn State was limited due to the depth and talent along the Nittany Lions’ defensive front. However, his decision to enter the transfer portal opens up new opportunities for increased playing time and a chance to showcase his abilities at a higher level.

Breaking Down Davon Townley’s Transfer Portal Pick: Missouri State

In choosing Missouri State, Townley joins a program that competes in the Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC) at the FCS level. The Bears have established themselves as a consistent contender within the conference, having won four MVFC titles since 2005 and making multiple appearances in the FCS Playoffs.

Head coach Bobby Petrino, known for his offensive prowess, has been working to fortify the defensive side of the ball since taking over the program in 2020. The addition of Townley, with his impressive physical tools and potential, could prove to be a significant boost for the Bears’ defensive line.

“We’re excited to welcome Davon to our program,” said Petrino. “He’s a talented player with a tremendous upside, and we believe he can make an immediate impact for us on the defensive front.”

How Will Davon Townley Impact Missouri State’s Defense?

How Will Davon Townley Impact Missouri State's Defense

At Missouri State, Townley will likely slide into a starting role along the defensive line, potentially at the defensive end position. His combination of size, strength, and athleticism should allow him to disrupt opposing offenses and wreak havoc in the backfield.

Analysts have praised Townley’s ability to use his length and quickness to shed blockers and penetrate the offensive line. If he can consistently harness those skills, he could become a formidable pass-rusher and run-stopper for the Bears.

A Seamless Transition or Challenges Ahead?

While Townley’s talent is undeniable, his transition to Missouri State may present some challenges. Adapting to a new defensive scheme and coaching staff can be a hurdle for any transfer, especially for a player who has yet to solidify himself as a consistent contributor.

However, Townley does have a familiar face on the Missouri State staff in the form of defensive line coach Corey Brown, who previously served as an analyst at Penn State. Brown’s familiarity with Townley’s skillset could help facilitate a smoother adjustment process.

Additionally, the Bears’ defensive line room is relatively experienced, with several returning starters and key contributors. This veteran presence could provide valuable mentorship and guidance to help Townley acclimate quickly to the program’s expectations and playing style.

YearGames PlayedTacklesSacksTFL

Davon Townley’s Penn State Stats

Fans can expect to see Townley making an impact on the field for Missouri State as early as the upcoming 2023 season, provided he can quickly establish himself within the defensive scheme and earn a significant role. His arrival adds another intriguing piece to a Bears defense that allowed just 22.6 points per game last year, ranking third in the MVFC.


Davon Townley’s decision to transfer from Penn State to Missouri State after entering the portal represents a fresh start and an opportunity to unlock his full potential. While his time with the Nittany Lions didn’t yield the playing time or impact many had hoped for, the former four-star recruit’s physical tools and upside remain tantalizing.

At Missouri State, Townley will have the chance to showcase his talents on a consistent basis and potentially become a disruptive force along the Bears’ defensive line. If he can capitalize on this opportunity and continue to develop his skills, Townley could position himself as an NFL prospect down the line.

Only time will tell how seamlessly Townley’s transition to Missouri State will be, but one thing is certain: the Bears have added a player with immense potential, and fans will be eager to see how he can elevate the defense in the upcoming seasons.

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