Pittsburgh LB Todd Thomas leaves Panthers program after demotion

Pittsburgh junior linebacker Todd Thomas is leaving the program.

Thomas told coach Paul Chryst Wednesday morning he no longer wanted to be part of the team. The decision comes a day after Thomas was bumped to second string on the depth chart as the Panthers began training camp.

Thomas started seven games last season for Pitt, finishing with 59 tackles, 1½ sacks, an interception and a blocked punt. He was expected to be a major contributor on a defense that finished 17th in the country in yards allowed last year.

Chryst said moving Thomas to a backup position was designed to "motivate" him. Thomas responded by batting down three passes in drills during the first day of camp before informing Chryst of his decision to transfer.