Another big recruiting week is on tap for South Carolina, so it’s time for SEC Country to step in and make a few fearless predictions about Gamecocks recruiting.
Here’s what we’ve got:
South Carolina lands another 2017 commit in eight days
Next Saturday’s cookout will afford South Carolina coaches another opportunity to spend time with recruits in an up close and personal setting. The Gamecocks coaches will utilize the event to help build bonds and strengthen relationships.
The timing of the cookout is certainly conducive to committing. The summer recruiting push is coming to its conclusion and both sides – prospects and school – are approaching the start of their respective seasons. It’s a good time for prospects to close up shop and focus on their senior year.
At the top of the list of candidates for the Gamecocks is 3-star safety Zay Brown, who was reported by one outlet having already committed. However, Brown refuted the news and told SEC Country he was looking to announce his decision at a later date. The Clarke Central High School (Athens, Ga.) prospect is ranked the No. 114 safety in the class of 2017.
Xavier Thomas stays in-state
The 5-star defensive end from Wilson High School (Florence, S.C.) recently released a top four of South Carolina, Clemson, Ohio State and Florida State.
Thomas has visited the two out-of-state schools. There are a couple of factors that make Florida State an intriguing option for Thomas. The Seminoles were first to offer. Plus, Tallahassee was once home to Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Lawrence Timmons, who played high school ball at Wilson.
However, like Ohio State, the distance from home is pretty significant.
Thomas grew up a South Carolina fan, and there was a time, he once admitted, that he hated Clemson. Those feelings changed once his recruiting profile took off and he took a visit to the school.
Since Thomas is slated to make a decision at some point after his junior season, a good year one under Will Muschamp could go a long way in helping the Gamecocks land the No. 3 overall prospect in the Class of 2018.
More stars on the way
South Carolina has just one 4-star 2017 commitment in Union County High School (S.C.) wide receiver Shi Smith. The rest of the class is made up of 3-star prospects.
Smith won’t be the only 4-star in the Gamecocks haul. There are plenty of candidates
The first one is defensive tackle M.J. Webb (Madison, Ga.), who will be back in Columbia next Saturday for the cookout. Could he pull the trigger next weekend? Perhaps. Also, keep in mind that the Gamecocks have already scheduled his official visit.
The other 4-star prospects with South Carolina high on their list include cornerback Jamyest Williams (Lawrenceville, Ga.), wide receiver OrTre Smith (Mount Pleasant, S.C.), offensive lineman T.J. Moore (Charlotte, N.C.) and cornerback Yusuf Corker (Stockbridge, Ga.).
Williams is trying to visit for next weekend’s cookout. Smith is mulling between Clemson and South Carolina. There’s no word on what Moore will do. Corker has already ruled out the possibility of attending, because of family reasons.
All ratings and rankings are according to the 247Sports’ composite, unless otherwise indicated.