South Carolina will sign its 2017 recruiting class on Wednesday, but four high school recruits already are on campus getting ready for spring football. SEC Country gives you the rundown on the four early enrollees.
Year 1 of Will Muschamp’s tenure at South Carolina saw a big splash by a freshman wide receiver. Year 2 could see the same.
After Bryan Edwards had a big debut after enrolling early in 2016, OrTre Smith tries to follow the same path. Smith, a wide receiver from Mount Pleasant (S.C.) Wando, is the top-ranked offensive commit for the Gamecocks. Selected to play in the Army All-American Game, Smith did not take part in because of ankle surgery.
Smith, like Edwards, is a big-bodied receiver at 6-foot-3, 215 pounds and will give quarterback Jake Bentley another weapon in a passing attack that already features Deebo Samuel and Hayden Hurst.
Smith was highly recruited headed into last summer, and he was impressive at Nike’s The Opening in Oregon to add to his stock during that week. He also held offers from Clemson, Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma and Florida State.
Smith caught 37 passes for 448 yards and 2 touchdowns before going down with a right ankle injury. He was the back of the year as named by the South Carolina Football Coaches Association and was a finalist for Mr. Football.
Smith’s injury required surgical repair, but he recently told TheState.com that he should be able to start conditioning drills in February.
The Smith profile
247sports: 4-star, No. 1 player in South Carolina, No. 18 wide receiver
Rivals: 4-star, No. 1 player in South Carolina, No. 15 wide receiver
Scout: 4-star, No. 25 wide receiver
ESPN: 4-star, No. 2 player in South Carolina, No. 36 wide receiver