Hale McGranahan/SEC Country
An early enrollee, WR OrTre Smith has already impressed South Carolina coaches.

What to expect from freshman WR OrTre Smith in 2017

Welcome to SEC Country’s Chicken & Waffles, your daily dish for all things South Carolina Gamecocks football, basketball and more. Miss a previous edition? Find every edition of SEC Country’s South Carolina Gamecocks Chicken & Waffles right here.

While at the Spurs Up event in Mount Pleasant on Thursday, coach Will Muschamp shed some light on the Charleston area’s new favorite son, freshman WR OrTre Smith …

The gist of it: expect to see Smith on the field in 2017.

Quite the revelation from the Gamecocks coach — though not wholly unexpected as Smith was rated as the No. 130 overall prospect in the Class of 2017, according to 247Sports composite rankings.

Recovering from offseason surgery to his right ankle, the Mount Pleasant native was limited in spring practice. Smith still made the most of his time on the practice field, particularly in the spring game — snagging a 42-yard bomb from former Wando teammate Bailey Hart.

South Carolina Gamecocks-OrTre Smith-South Carolina
WR OrTre Smith has the size and speed to make an impact in his freshman season. (Hale McGranahan/SEC Country)

Standing at 6-foot-4, with uncharacteristic speed, Smith has the unique physical tools to become a serious red zone threat for the Gamecocks in 2017.

RELATED: South Carolina freshman WR OrTre Smith looks to build off first spring 

“Any time you get in front of people in our stadium and understand it’s a little bit of a different environment — it’s going to be a lot different on Sept. 2nd [in Charlotte, N.C., vs. North Carolina State], too,” Muschamp said of Smith following the spring game. “But I’m really proud of him.”

Combine QB Jake Bentley’s outstanding deep ball (best in the SEC, by the way) with his talented corps of returning pass catchers, plus an incoming frosh talent like Smith, and you have the recipe for an exciting offense.

Will Muschamp mum

South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp passed on a chance to sound off on talk of SEC realignment.

RELATED: Will Muschamp passes on SEC realignment talk 

“Whatever’s best for our league is the way I would look at it, whether we’re expanding, changing the divisions,” Muschamp said at the latest Spurs Up event. “Whatever they want to do, I’m for, as far as that’s concerned. I have no issue or problem, either way commissioner [Greg] Sankey wanted to do it.”

Well, that’s not a very fun or controversial take.

Another top 10

South Carolina is the lone SEC school in 4-star DT Alim McNeill’s top 10 schools.

The No. 207 overall prospect in the Class of 2018 was one of the big visitors in town for the Gamecocks’ spring game back in April.

Two words: Steele Chambers

Is there a better name for a running back?

RELATED: All-name offer

In short — no there isn’t.

“Three-star (247Sports) running back Steele Chambers is a first-team all-name candidate for the 2019 recruiting cycle,” reported SEC Country’s Hale McGranahan. “On Wednesday, the 6-2, 215-pound running back landed an offer from South Carolina.”

Ouch

South Carolina baseball
Chad Holbrook’s team is in must-win mode in its remaining two games against UGA. (Hale McGranahan/SEC Country)

“… In need of some of their best baseball of the season — coach Chad Holbrook and players said as much Wednesday — the Gamecocks were stifled at the plate by Georgia’s Andrew Gist [on Thursday] and could not overcome a four-run second inning from the Bulldogs,” wrote SEC Country’s Mike Wilson. “The Gamecocks [31-22 overall, 12-16 SEC] fell 6-3 in the series opener, a win they sorely needed but could not gain.”

The Gamecocks will likely need a series win if they have any hopes of playing in the NCAA Tournament.

RELATED: South Carolina baseball drops crucial series opener against Georgia 

Baseball America listed South Carolina among the “first four out” in its latest field-of-64 projection on Wednesday.

‘You’re still the one’

South Carolina baseball-Clarke Schmidt
RHP Clarke Schmidt’s surgery shouldn’t affect his draft stock. (Hale McGranahan/SEC Country)

Though his season was cut short by Tommy John surgery, South Carolina RHP Clarke Schmidt is still slated to be a first-round pick in the upcoming MLB draft, according to Baseball America.

RELATED: Clarke Schmidt a first-round candidate, per Baseball America 

“San Francisco also could be in on Schmidt, who rivaled Erick Fedde in terms of stuff and profiles similarly as an injured college ace who could go in the first round despite Tommy John surgery,” wrote Baseball America writer John Manuel, who also added that the Detroit Tigers, at No. 18, could be the high point for Schmidt.

Shout-out to Gamecock Nation

Despite leaving Columbia behind for the bright lights of the WNBA, former Lady Gamecocks G Kaela Davis still has major love for South Carolina fans …

SportsDay DFW has more on South Carolina duo Davis and Allisha Gray making fast impact on Dallas Wings.

 

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