David Johnson, Al Harris Jr. no longer with Gamecocks football team

Cornerback Al Harris Jr., here in the 2014 Independence Bowl, started nine games for South Carolina last season. (AP/File)

COLUMBIA — Two players who started games for South Carolina on defense last season are no longer part of the Gamecocks football team.

Defensive end David Johnson and cornerback Al Harris Jr. have both left the program, USC confirmed Saturday. “They are no longer part of the team. We wish them the best,” head coach Will Muschamp said in a statement.

It was unclear why the players are leaving. Johnson and Harris were dismissed according to 24/7 Sports, which first reported the departures.

Johnson, a 6-1, 240-pound junior from Lithonia, Ga., started three games last season and finished with 20 tackles and two quarterback hurries. Harris, a 5-11, 163-pound junior from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., started nine games last season and finished with 25 tackles and four pass break-ups.

Muschamp was hired Dec. 6 to succeed Steve Spurrier, who resigned in the middle of USC’s worst season in 15 years. His first spring practice with the Gamecocks is scheduled to open March 15.