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Sacramento State is looking to defend their 2nd straight Big Sky Championship and the Hornets will be the hunted in the loaded Big Sky conference in 2022. The Hornets utilized a strong defense last season as Sacramento State ranked Top-3 in the Big Sky in both scoring defense and total defense. The Hornets landed one of the biggest transfers in the country this week as former Texas linebacker Ayodele Adeoye was added to the Sacramento State roster according to Cameron Salerno of The Sacramento Bee. 

Ayodele was a consensus 4-star prospect out of St. Louis, MO and ranked as the #6 inside linebacker in the country. He also ranked as a Top-120 prospect and Top-25 recruit in the state of Missouri in the class of 2018. Ayodele earned 2nd Team Suburban XII South All-Conference in 2015 and was named 1st Team Suburban XII South All-Conference in 2016. Ayodele totaled 128 tackles and 6 sacks as a junior, while having six games of 17 tackles or more that season. He transferred to IMG Academy for his senior season and was an integral part of a defense that allowed only 13.7 points per game.

He was selected to participate in the Under Armour All-American Game and was named to the 2017 High School Butkus Award watch list. Ayodele announced his commitment to Texas over other programs including Oklahoma, Arkansas, Illinois, Florida, and Texas A&M. 

Ayodele saw action in 4 games as a true freshman for the Longhorns, but maintained his redshirt eligibility. Over the next three seasons Ayodele totaled 57 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, 1 interception, and 3 pass breakups over 21 games for the Longhorns. He announced his transfer in November of 2021 and will have two years of eligibility left at Sacramento State. 

Sacramento State lost multiple top contributors at the linebacker spot from the 2021 season. Two-time Big Sky All-American Marcus Hawkins and All-Big Sky Honorable Mention Taylor Powell are both gone at the linebacker spot for the Hornets. Linebackers Jeremy Harris and Dylan Jorge both return after combining for 46 tackles last season. Ayodele is primed to be an immediate contributors for the Hornets and will bring elite athleticism to the linebacker spot for Sacramento State. 

Sacramento State kicks off the 2022 season against Utah Tech on September 3rd before traveling to face Northern Iowa in the MVFC-Big Sky Challenge. 

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