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Zack Bailey
OL
6-5
330
Summerville, S.C. (Summerville)
Coach Elliott's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 11:15 a.m.
Highly regarded in-state offensive lineman who attends Summerville (S.C.) High School... was one of five finalists for South Carolina's Mr. Football award... helped legendary coach John McKissick and the Green Wave to an 8-5 record and to the second round of the Class AAAA Division I playoffs as a senior... played left guard for the Sandlappers in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas where he was recognized as the strongest player at the game... considered a four-star prospect, the No. 2 player in the state, the fifth-best offensive guard in the country and No. 72 overall by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 29th-best offensive guard in the country by Scout... regarded as a four-star prospect, the fourth-best player in the state, the 12th-best offensive guard in the country and No. 247 overall by 247Sports... ranked as a four-star prospect, the fifth-best player in the state, the No. 15 offensive guard in the country and No. 220 overall by ESPN... had offers from all over the Southeast.

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Shameik Blackshear
DE
6-5
240
Bluffton, S.C. (Bluffton)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 7:15 a.m.
Talented defensive end who attends Bluffton (S.C.) High School... played for coach Ken Cribb and the Bobcats... missed half of his senior season with a knee injury... selected to play in the Under Armour All-America game in St. Petersburg, Fla... racked up 96 tackles, 18 for loss, five sacks and 15 hurries as a sophomore... considered a four-star prospect, the fifth-best player in the state and the 18th-best strongside defensive end in the country by Rivals... rated a four-star prospect, the 11th-best defensive end in the country and No. 120 overall by Scout... regarded as a four-star prospect, the second-best player in the state, the eighth-best weakside defensive end in the country and No. 119 overall by 247Sports... ranked as a four-star prospect, the fourth-best player in the state, the No. 18 defensive end and No. 203 overall by ESPN... had numerous offers from all over the Southeast, with Clemson, North Carolina, Georgia and LSU among his favorites.

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Toure Boyd
DB
5-11
180
Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. (Rancho Cucamonga/Chaffey College)
Coach Brown's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 1:20 p.m.
Junior college transfer who played safety at Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. for one year under head coach Rob Hadaway... recorded 80 tackles, two interceptions and broke up 10 passes... also blocked four kicks for the Panthers, who finished 6-5... garnered all-conference honors... considered a three-star prospect by Rivals, Scout and ESPN... rated a four-star prospect, the fifth-best JUCO player in California, the third-best JUCO safety in the country and the 21st-best junior college player overall, according to 247Sports... selected South Carolina over Arizona, Southern Miss, Utah and Washington State... planned to attend Boise State out of high school, but detoured to College of the Desert (Palm Desert, Calif.) before spending a year a Chaffey... grew up in Birmingham, Ala. before moving to California as a teenager... graduated from Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) High School in 2012... helped the Cougars to an 11-2 record under head coach Nick Balz in 2011... will have three years to play two.

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Blake Camper
OL
6-7
295
Virginia Beach, Va. (Frank W. Cox)
Coach Elliott's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 7:48 a.m.
Offensive lineman who attends Frank W. Cox High School in Virginia Beach, Va... coached by Bill Stachelski... helped the Falcons to a 9-3 record and to the second round of the 6A playoffs as a senior... father, John, played for Steve Spurrier at Duke... considered a three-star prospect, the 26th-best player in the state and the 85th-best offensive tackle in the country by Rivals... a three-star prospect and the 88th-best offensive tackle in the country according to Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 28th-best player in the state and the 75th-best offensive tackle in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 32nd-best player in the state and the 90th-best offensive tackle in the country by ESPN... committed to Rutgers before switching his pledge to the Gamecocks... also considered East Carolina, Louisville, Maryland, North Carolina State, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest and West Virginia.

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Joseph Charlton
K/P
6-4
190
Columbia, S.C. (A.C. Flora)
Coach Robinson's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 7:45 a.m.
Local product who attends A.C. Flora High School in Columbia... handled the kickoff, punting and placekicking duties as a prep... helped the Falcons and coach Reggie Shaw to a 13-2 record and a spot in the state AAA semifinals as a senior... considered a three-star prospect by Rivals and Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 20-best player in the state and the second-best punter in the country by 247Sports... ESPN ranks him as a three-star prospect, the 21st-best player in the state and the 15th-best kicker in the country.

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Jalen Christian
WR
5-9
170
Damascus, Md. (Damascus)
Coach Spurrier Jr.'s Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 8:14 a.m.
Standout wide receiver who attends Damascus (Md.) High School... helped the Hornets and head coach Chris DeRosa to a 14-1 record and a spot in the state championship game as a senior... was on the 2015 Semper Fidelis All-American roster... was a two-way, four-year varsity starter who played receiver, defensive back, and returned kicks and punts... considered a four-star prospect, the eighth-best player in the state and the 38th-best wide receiver in the nation, according to Rivals... rated a four-star prospect, the 33rd-best wide receiver in the country and No. 231 overall by Scout... regarded as a four-star prospect, the best player in the state, the seventh-best "athlete" in the country and No. 105 overall by 247Sports... ranked as a four-star prospect, the fourth-best player in Maryland, the No. 29 wide receiver in the country and No. 252 overall by ESPN... had over 20 Division I offers.

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Devante Covington
DE
6-4
235
Rockingham, N.C. (Richmond Co./Georgia Military)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 9:35 a.m.
Defensive end originally signed with the Gamecocks in February 2013... spent the past two seasons at Georgia Military College in Milledgeville, Ga... coached by Bert Williams... considered a two-star prospect by Rivals and Scout out of junior college... ranked as a three-star prospect and the No. 10 junior college defensive end by ESPN... helped Richmond County (Rockingham, N.C.) to an 11-2 record and to the quarterfinal round of the state playoffs as a senior in 2012... coached by Paul Hoggard... named to the 2012 Associated Press all-state team... participated in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas following his senior season... as a junior, recorded 34 tackles and eight sacks... out of high school he was considered a three-star prospect who was ranked as the 28th-best player in the state of North Carolina by Rivals... a three-star prospect and the nation's 42nd-best defensive end by Scout... a three-star prospect, the 17th-best player in the state, and the 20th-best weakside defensive end in the country by 247Sports... a three-star prospect and an All-Atlantic Region pick according to PrepStar... also had offers from Clemson, East Carolina, NC State and Tennessee... hails from the same high school that produced former Gamecock All-American Melvin Ingram... born March 6, 1994... will have three years to play two.

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Mon Denson
RB
5-10
225
LaGrange, Ga. (LaGrange)
Coach Sands' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 9:05 a.m.
Running back who attends LaGrange (Ga.) High School... also played linebacker... earned all-state honors for coach Dialleo Burks... the Grangers posted a 5-6 record and lost in the first round of the Class AAAAA playoffs in his senior season... rushed for nearly 1,300 yards and 15 touchdowns... selected to play in the Georgia-Florida All-Star game where he scored on a 26-yard run... also selected for the Blue-Grey All-American Bowl... considered a three-star prospect, the 47th-best player in the state and the 46th-best running back in the nation, according to Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 83rd-best running back in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 82nd-best player in the state and the 57th-best running back in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 56th-best player in the state and the No. 50 running back in the country by ESPN... had nearly 20 Division I offers.

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Trey Derouen
OL
6-3
325
Lilburn, Ga. (Parkview)
Coach Elliott's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 7:45 a.m.
Offensive line who attends Parkview High School in Lilburn, Ga... the Panthers went 4-6 under coach Eric Godfree in 2014... earned second-team Class AAAAAA All-State honors by the Georgia Sports Writers Association... considered a three-star prospect by Rivals... recognized as a three-star prospect and the nation's 91st-ranked offensive guard by Scout... rated a three-star prospect, the 91st-best player in the state and the 55th-best offensive guard in the country by 247Sports... considered a three-star prospect, the 91st-best palyer int he state and the 57th-best offensive guard in the nation by ESPN... originally commited to Mississippi State... also visited Florida and Louisville and considered Kansas State.

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Daniel Fennell
LB
6-2
205
Loganville, Ga. (Grayson)
Coach Botkin's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 8:20 a.m.
Linebacking prospect who attends Grayson High School in Loganville, Ga... helped the Rams and head coach Mickey Conn to a 10-2 record and the second round of the Class AAAAAA state playoffs in his senior season... rated a three-star prospect, the 46th-best player in the state and the 38th-best outside linebacker in the country by Rivals... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 71st-best player in the state and the 22nd-best inside linebacker in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect and the No. 40 outside linebacker by ESPN... had over 20 Division I offers.

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Rashad Fenton
DB
5-11
180
Miami, Fla. (Miami Carol City)
Coach Brown's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 9:40 a.m.
Attends Miami Carol City High School in Miami... coached by Aubrey Hill... started on the varsity squad at Norland High as a freshman... rated a three-star prospect by Rivals... is a three-star prospect and the 119th-best cornerback in the country according to Scout... considered a three-star prospect, the 58th-best player in the state of Florida and the 45th-best cornerback in the country by 247Sports... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 224th-best player in the state and the No. 97 cornerback in the country by ESPN... selected South Carolina over Auburn and Florida.

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Ernest Hawkins
LB
6-1
210
Baltimore, Md. (Dunbar/Hartnell College)
Coach Botkin's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Junior college transfer who enrolled at South Carolina in January... played one year for coach Matt Collins at Hartnell College in Salinas, Calif... earned first-team all-conference honors in the Golden Coast Conference for a Panther team that went 9-2... credited with 56 tackles in just eight games played with 12.0 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks... considered a three-star prospect by Rivals... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 35th-best JUCO player in the state, the third-best junior college inside linebacker in the country and No. 135 overall by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect and the No. 3 junior college inside linebacker by ESPN... also considered Colorado and Hawaii after his year of junior college... graduated from Dunbar High in Baltimore in 2012... originally signed with UTEP, but did not attend school until enrolling at Hartnell in 2014... will have four years to play three.

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Cory Helms
OL
6-4
315
Alpharetta, Ga. (Milton/Wake Forest)
Coach Elliott's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 7:54 a.m.
Transfer who will join the Gamecocks after playing 23 games including 22 starts over the past two years for Wake Forest... started the first seven games of the 2014 season at left guard, then moved back to center for the final five contests... earned Freshman All-America accolades in 2013... played in all 12 games with 11 starts at center as a true freshman... started every game except Senior Day vs. Duke, giving way to senior Whit Barnes... started the season opener vs. Presbyterian to become the first Demon Deacon since defensive tackle Marvin Mitchell in 1987 to start his very first collegiate game... a 2013 graduate of Milton High School in Georgia... earned all-metro, all-region and high school All-American honors... awarded first team All-Region 5-6A honors as a senior... was the starting center for the Blue team in the Offense-Defense All-America Bowl in Houston... ranked as the No. 9 center nationally and the No. 58 prospect in Georgia by Rivals... played for coach Howie DeCristofaro... had 11 offers including South Carolina, Syracuse, Cincinnati, Louisville and USF... selected the Gamecocks over offers from Mississippi State, Texas A&M and Penn State after electing to leave Wake Forest... born December 31, 1994.

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Jalen Henry
LB
5-10
215
Foley, Ala. (Foley)
Coach Botkin's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Linebacker who graduated from Foley (Ala.) High School in December 2014... enrolled at Carolina in January... coached by Todd Watson... the Lions reached the state Class 7A semifinals with a 10-4 record... selected for the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star game following his senior season... missed the majority of his junior season after breaking his foot in the second game of the year... led his team in tackles as a sophomore... also played baseball and basketball... considered a three-star prospect and the 31st-best player in the state by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 76th-best outside linebacker in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 38th-best player in the state and the 40th-best inside linebacker in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 30th-best player in the state and the No. 78 outside linebacker by ESPN... also considered Southern Miss.

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Octavis Johnson
DB
6-0
185
Homerville, Ga. (Clinch County)
Coach Ward's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 10:17 a.m.
Defensive back who attends Clinch County High School in Homerville, Ga... played on both sides of the ball for the Panthers, who were eliminated in the first round of the Class A state playoffs... coached by Jim Dickerson... earned first-team all-state accolades... rated a four-star prospect, the 18th-best player in the state, the 19th-best cornerback in the country and the 209th-best player overall, according to Rivals... rated a four-star prospect, the 31st-best cornerback in the country and No. 288 overall by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 37th-best player in the state and the 31st-best "athlete" in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 54th-best player in Georgia and the No. 55 "athlete" in the country by ESPN... had a dozen major Division I offers and selected South Carolina over Clemson and Tennessee.

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Ulric Jones
DL
6-5
275
Oxford, Ala. (Oxford/Butler CC)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 11:53 a.m.
Junior college player who played at Butler (Kan.) Community College... coached by Troy Morrell... earned honorable mention all-conference accolades in the Jayhawk Conference at defensive end... credited with 43 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks in 2014 for a Grizzlies team that went 8-3... originally committed to Maryland before selecting the Gamecocks... graduated from Oxford (Ala.) High School in 2013... selected Mississippi State out of high school... will have three years to play two.

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Sean Kelly
P
5-10
190
Oakland, Fla. (W. Orange/FAU/Tallahassee JC)
Coach Robinson's Comments Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Transfer who joined the Gamecocks in January of 2015 as a walk-on... did not play football in the fall of 2014 while attending Tallahassee Junior College... spent the previous two years at Florida Atlantic... as a sophomore in 2013, he punted for 3,072 yards, averaging 42.7 yards per punt, and set a career-best with a 64-yard punt against FIU... had 19 punts of over 50 yards and pinned opponents inside the 20 on 26 occasions... ranked third in Conference USA and 36th in the NCAA for average yards per punt... ranked third in punting yards and second in average yards per punt in FAU history... also had a pair of 63-yard boots against Rice and Auburn... named FAU's Special Team MVP and was a three-time FAU game ball winner (at ECU, at Rice and NMSU)... received second-team honors in Phil Steele's 2013 Mid-Season All-C-USA team and was a second team all-conference selection... as a freshman, joined the squad during camp in 2012 and handled every punt for the squad... averaged 39.9 yards per punt including 14 that were 50+ yards... 16 landed inside the 20... saw four games where he was called into action eight times, all on the road (Georgia, Alabama, ULM and Western Kentucky)... four of his 50+ yard boots were at Alabama, including two that fell inside the 20... attempted a field goal in the season opener and was credited with six kickoffs in the first two games... awarded a scholarship after his freshman season by Carl Pelini... punted and played quarterback at West Orange High School in Winter Garden, Fla. and drew interest from Catawba College as a signal-caller... also considered Florida State before selecting the Gamecocks... will have two years to play two.

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Marquavius Lewis
DE
6-3
265
Greenwood, S.C. (Greenwood/Hutchinson CC)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Highly regarded junior college transfer who enrolled at South Carolina in January... played at Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College for head coach Rion Rhoades... named the Jayhawk Conference Defensive Player of the Year and first-team all-conference... twice earned conference Player of the Week accolades and once garnered national Player of the Week honors... credited with 63 tackles in 12 games including 20.5 tackles for loss and 11.0 sacks... had 21 quarterback hurries, forced two fumbles and recovered one... helped the Blue Dragons to an 11-win season for the first time in the program's 83-year history and a No. 4 final ranking, their highest ever in the NJCAA Football Poll... in 2013 he logged 63 tackles with 19 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks, 15 quarterback hurries, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and a blocked kick... graduated from Greenwood (S.C.) High School in 2012... attended Greenville Tech in the fall of 2012 before transferring to Hutch... is a four-star prospect according to Rivals... rated a five-star prospect and the best junior college prospect in the country by Scout... ranked as a four-star prospect and the No. 1 junior college strong-side defensive end in the country and No. 3 overall by 247Sports... ESPN considers him a four-star recruit, the second-best defensive end and the No. 6 player overall in the JUCO ranks... also considered Auburn before choosing the Gamecocks... has two years to play two.

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Kyle Markway
TE
6-4
235
St. Louis, Mo. (St. John Vianney)
Coach Mangus' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 8:35 a.m.
Tight end who attends St. John Vianney in Kirkwood, Mo... coached by Paul Day... played both ways and in multiple roles for the Golden Griffins during his prep career... team went 7-5 in his senior campaign... earned first-team Class 5 All-State honors as a tight end... as a junior, he caught 28 passes for 254 yards and a touchdown and recorded 64 tackles with seven sacks, helping his squad to a 7-4 record... logged 18 catches for 225 yard and two scores and earned all-conference honors at defensive end after collecting 43 tackles with four sacks as a sophomore... rated a three-star prospect and the 13th-best player in the state by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 31st-best tight end in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 18th-best player in the state and the 45th-best tight end in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 10th-best player in the state and the No. 17 tight end by ESPN... offer list included several Big Ten schools with Iowa at the top of his list, where his uncle, Matt Markway, played for the Hawkeyes in the `90s.

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Dexter Neal
WR
6-2
195
Stone Mountain, Ga. (Stephenson)
Coach Spurrier Jr.'s Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 11:15 a.m.
"D.J." attends Stephenson High School in Stone Mountain, Ga... played multiple positions on both sides of the ball for coach Ron Gartrell... helped the Jaguars to an 8-4 record and the second round of the Class AAAAA state playoffs as a senior... caught seven touchdowns and averaged over 15 yards per catch as a sophomore... rated a four-star prospect, the 23rd-best player in the state and the 31st-best wide receiver in the country by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 127th-best wide receiver in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 77th-best player in the state and the 85th-best wide receiver in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a four-star prospect, the 44th-best player in the state and the No. 54 wide receiver in the country by ESPN... had offers from about 20 Division I schools with his interest primarily on Georgia, Tennessee, Clemson and Auburn... also highly regarded as a baseball player who could be drafted in July... rated the No. 116 overall baseball prospect and the No. 26 outfielder by Perfect Game... interested in playing two sports at South Carolina.

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Lorenzo Nunez
QB
6-2
190
Kennesaw, Ga. (Harrison)
Coach Mangus' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 8:14 a.m.
Quarterback prospect who attends Harrison High School in Kennesaw, Ga... coached by Matt Dickmann... the Hoyas went 5-6 in his senior season... considered a four-star prospect, the 25th-best player in the state and the 16th-best dual-threat quarterback in the country according to Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 31st-best quarterback in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 38th-best player in the state and the 15th-best dual-threat quarterback in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 53rd-best player in Georgia and the No. 18 dual-threat quarterback by ESPN... had numerous offers from all over the country.

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Christian Owens
WR
6-5
200
Griffin, Ga. (Griffin)
Coach Spurrier Jr.'s Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Lanky wide receiver who graduated from Griffin (Ga.) High School in December and enrolled at South Carolina in January... the Bears, under head coach Jarrett Laws, went 11-1 in 2014 and reached the second round of the Class AAAA playoffs... as a junior he had 23 catches for 600 yards and three touchdowns... considered a four-star prospect, the 33rd-best player in Georgia and the 11th-best tight end in the country by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 79th-best wide receiver in the country by Scout... 247Sports considers him a three-star prospect, the 64th-best player in Georgia and the nation's 70th-best wide receiver... ranked as a four-star prospect, the 38th-best player in the state and the No. 5 H-tight end in the country by ESPN... also played basketball in high school... originally committed to Georgia and had offers from Clemson, Louisville, North Carolina and Tennessee among others.

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Christian Pellage
OL
6-6
305
Brooksville, Fla. (Nature Coach Tech)
Coach Elliott's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 8:14 a.m.
Offensive lineman who attends Nature Coast Tech in Brooksville, Fla... helped coach Justin Worden and the Sharks post a 7-4 mark in his senior season... earned a spot on the Florida Class 5A first-team all-state squad... invited to play in the Under Armour All-America Game played in St. Petersburg Fla... considered a three-star prospect, the 75th-best player in the state and the 51st-best offensive tackle by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 63rd-best offensive tackle in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 62nd-best player in the state and the 47th-best offensive tackle in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a four-star prospect, the 28th-best player in Florida, the No. 14 offensive tackle in the nation and No. 138 overall by ESPN... selected South Carolina over Florida among more than 30 offers.

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Sherrod Pittman
LB
6-0
215
Jacksonville, Fla. (First Coast)
Coach Botkin's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Linebacker who graduated from First Coast High School in Jacksonville, Fla. in December and enrolled at Carolina in January... coached by Marty Lee... Buccaneers went 12-1 in his senior season and reached the third round of the Florida 8A playoffs... broke his leg late in his final campaign... earned a spot on the Florida Class 8A all-state squad... tallied 103 tackles and three interceptions as a junior, earning first-team all-state honors... logged 74 tackles with seven forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries as a sophomore... considered a four-star recruit, the 19th-best player in the state of Florida, the nation's fifth-best inside linebacker, and the country's 112th-best player overall by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 31st-best middle linebacker in the country by Scout... 247Sports ranks him as a three-star prospect, the 61st-best player in Florida and the nation's 32nd-best outside linebacker... ranked as a four-star prospect, the 40th-best player in Florida, the No. 6 inside linebacker and No. 222 overall by ESPN... also considered Louisville and Southern California.

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Connor Redmond
TE
6-4
215
Lawrenceville, Ga. (Archer)
Coach Mangus' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 7:27 a.m.
Tight end prospect who attends Archer High School in Lawrenceville, Ga... overcame a back injury to help head coach Andy Dyer and the Tigers to the Class AAAAAA state championship game and an 11-4 record after an 0-3 start in his senior season... earned a spot on the 2013 AJC first-team offense all-state team after making about 40 catches... played tight end and linebacker as a freshman then moved strictly to tight end for the remainder of his prep career... considered a three-star prospect by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 37th-best tight end in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 158th-best player in the state and the 60th-best tight end in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 106th-best player in Georgia and the No. 21 tight end in the country by ESPN... had more than a dozen Division I offers... picked South Carolina over Boston College Virginia and Kansas State.

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Dante Sawyer
DE
6-3
280
Suwanee, Ga. (North Gwinnett/East Mississippi CC)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 10:17 a.m.
Defensive end who spent the 2014 season at East Mississippi Community College in Scooba, Miss... played for coach Buddy Stephens... helped the Lions to a perfect 12-0 record and the NJCAA football championship... credited with 21 tackles including 6.5 sacks and 10.5 tackles for loss... also forced a pair of fumbles... considered a four-star prospect by Rivals... was a three-star prospect and the No. 36 JUCO player in the country according to Scout... regarded as a four-star prospect, the third-best JUCO player in the state, the top JUCO weakside defensive end in the country and No. 6 overall junior college prospect by 247Sports... ranked as a four-star prospect, the No. 3 junior college defensive end and 13th overall by ESPN... coached by Bob Sphire at North Gwinnett High School in Suwanee, Ga.... graduated in 2014... helped the Bulldogs to a 13-3 record and the state championship game as a senior... logged 49 tackles, including eight tackles for loss and three sacks in his final campaign... earned first-team Class 6A all-state accolades by the Georgia Sportswriters... also earned a spot on the AJC's Class 6A all-metro team... played in the U.S. Army All-America Bowl... recorded three sacks in that all-star game... out of high school, Rivals considered him a four-star prospect, the 13th-best player in the state, the seventh-best strongside defensive end in the country and No. 87 on the Rivals100 list... Scout ranked him as a four-star prospect, the 24th-best defensive end in the country and No. 231 overall... considered a four-star prospect, the 8th-best player in the state, the fifth-best weakside defensive end in the nation, and No. 121 overall, according to 247Sports... ESPN considered him a four-star prospect, No. 88 on its ESPN300 list, the ninth-best defensive end in the nation and the seventh-best player in the state... ranked by PrepStar as a four-star prospect and No. 60 on the Top 150 Dream Team... also visited Missouri before choosing the Gamecocks... was born December 17, 1994.

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Darin Smalls
S
5-10
170
Summerville, S.C. (Summerville)
Coach Ward's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Defensive back who originally signed with the Gamecocks in February 2014 but did not enroll in school until January 2015... spent the fall of 2014 rehabbing his knee injury... played for legendary coach John McKissick at Summerville (S.C.) High School, graduating in 2014... the Green Wave went 11-3 and reached the state semifinals in his senior season... suffered a knee injury in his final campaign... logged 60 tackles and intercepted six passes as a sophomore, returning two for touchdowns... also competed in baseball and track... Rivals considered him a three-star prospect, the 11th-best player in the state and the 37th-best cornerback in the country... Scout rated him as a three-star prospect and the 53rd-best cornerback in the country... considered a three-star prospect, the 15th-best player in the state, and the 37th-best safety in the nation, according to 247Sports... ESPN considered him a three-star prospect, the 23rd-best safety in the nation and the 14th-best player in the state... ranked by PrepStar as a three-star prospect and an All-Atlantic Region pick... had more than a dozen major college offers.

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A.J. Turner
RB
5-10
185
Clifton, Va. (Centreville)
Coach Sands' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 9:15 a.m.
Running back who attends Centreville High School in Clifton, Va... played both sides of the ball for head coach Chris Haddock... missed much of his senior season with a wrist injury when the Wildcats went 12-3 and reached the state 6A title game before losing in overtime... helped guide his team to an undefeated season and a state title as a junior when he rushed for 1,287 yards, scored 32 touchdowns and logged eight interceptions... rated a three-star prospect, the 18th-best player in the state and the 44th-best running back in the nation by Rivals... rated a four-star prospect and the 41st-best running back in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 17th-best player in the state and the 34th-best running back in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 31st-best player in Virginia and the No. 80 running back in the country by ESPN... had over 20 Division I offers with Virginia and Michigan State as his other top choices.

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Jerad Washington
WR
5-8
150
Jacksonville, Fla. (First Coast)
Coach Spurrier Jr.'s Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Speedy wide receiver who graduated from First Coast High School in Jacksonville in December 2014... enrolled at Carolina in January... helped the Buccaneers under head coach Marty Lee to a 12-1 record and the third round of the 8A playoffs as a senior... caught 52 passes for 889 yards... earned a spot on the Florida Class 8A all-state squad... played for Nease High in Ponte Vedra Beach (Fla.) as a freshman where he caught 67 passes for 790 yards and five touchdowns before his family moved to Baltimore... played his sophomore season in Maryland before moving back to the Jacksonsville area... a three-star prospect according to Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 144th-best wide receiver in the country by Scout... 247Sports ranked him as a three-star prospect, the 214th-best player in Florida and the nation's 187th-best wide receiver... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 171st-best player in the state and the 149th-best wide receiver in the country by ESPN... also played baseball... had interest from Kentucky and North Carolina among other schools.

bio
Quandeski Whitlow
DE
6-4
220
Opelika, Ala. (Opelika)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 9:35 a.m.
Defensive end who attends Opelika (Ala.) High School... played for coach Brian Blackmon... helped the Bulldogs to a 9-2 record and the second round of the Class 6A playoffs in his senior season... recorded 50 tackles including 17.5 for loss, 5.5 sacks and 27 quarterback hurries... participated in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic where he had three tackles for loss including a sack... had eight tackles for loss and his 43 tackles as a junior in 2013... handled the team's kickoffs as a sophomore... rated a three-star prospect, the 15th-best player in the state and the 24th-best weakside defensive end in the nation by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 61st-best defensive end in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 29th-best player in the state and the 38th-best weakside defensive end in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 23rd-best player in Alabama and the No. 53 defensive end by ESPN... also visited Louisville and Florida among his numerous offers... is a cousin of former Kentucky quarterback Jalen Whitlow.

bio
Dexter Wideman
DT
6-4
295
Saluda, S.C. (Saluda/Camden Military)
Coach Adams' Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: Enrolled in January
Defensive lineman who originally signed with the Gamecocks in February 2014... spent the fall at Camden (S.C.) Military Academy... played for head coach Will Rice... dislocated his elbow in the third game... enrolled at South Carolina in January 2015... rated as a four-star prospect by Rivals and ESPN... considered a four-star prospect and the top prep school recruit in the country by 247Sports... graduated from Saluda (S.C.) High School in 2014... the Tigers went 5-6 under head coach Wayne Bell in 2013... played in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas and in the Under Armour All-America game following his senior season... logged four tackles in the Shrine Bowl... credited with 64 tackles and seven sacks in 2012... logged 61 tackles with 14.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks in 2011... Rivals considered him a four-star prospect, the fifth-best player in the state, the 15th-best defensive tackle in the country and No. 237 on the Rivals250 following his senior season... Scout ranked him as a four-star prospect, the 22nd-best defensive tackle in the country and No. 266 overall... 247Sports listed him as a four-star prospect, the nation's No. 7 defensive tackle, the second-best player in the state and No. 64 on its Top247 list... ESPN considered him a four-star prospect, the 12th-best defensive tackle in the nation, No. 179 on the ESPN300 list and the sixth-best player in the state... ranked by PrepStar as a four-star prospect and No. 141 on the Top 150 Dream Team... originally committed to Florida State.

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Antoine Wilder
DB
5-10
180
Atlanta, Ga. (Hapeville Charter)
Coach Ward's Comments Highlights Player

SIGNED: 10:37 a.m.
Defensive back who attends Hapeville Charter in Atlanta... played both safety and running back for coach Winston Gordon and the Hornets... underwent knee surgery in October and missed the rest of his senior season... considered a three-star prospect by Rivals... rated a three-star prospect and the 52nd-best safety in the country by Scout... regarded as a three-star prospect, the 70th-best player in the state and the 41st-best safety in the country by 247Sports... ranked as a three-star prospect, the 90th-best player in Georgia and the No. 58 safety in the country by ESPN... also visited Tennessee State and had interest in Mississippi State and Louisville.

PRESS CONFERENCE QUOTES

Head Coach Steve Spurrier

Opening statement
I think we had another excellent recruiting class, I really do, 16 on defense, 14 on offense, a kicker, a walk-on punter that may earn a scholarship. It was I think a good bunch, I think they'll prove to be a little better than maybe all the rankings. Good bunch of guys, especially these defensive linemen. Everybody knows we had trouble rushing the passer last year, and Marquavius Lewis was a five star and obviously he, Devante Covington, Shameik Blackshear, Dante Sawyer, Boosie (Quandeski) Whitlow and of course Dexter Wideman may end up being an inside rusher.

Obviously we needed some help defensively and we believe we've done that and on offense we signed a lot of good players very much also with five big offensive lineman. I'm fired up about our quarterback Lorenzo Nunez, a kid that can run and pass. The college game is really going to quarterbacks that can run around and this gentleman is pretty good at that. Overall we think it's a good group and as you can see there's about 30-32 players listed, a little over a third of our team so we should be a different team next year. Hopefully we can put a defense out there that our fans will really be proud of and get fired up about. Our coaches did an excellent job of hustling around. All of our assistant coaches are good recruiters and bust their tail and I think the reason why we have so many good, solid players here is because our assistants did a super job.

On Potential Negative Impacts to the Recruiting Season
We started with a few more, we lost a few along the way as a lot of schools did. These kids change their mind all the time now, a lot of these kids committed when we were number four in the nation - we didn't end up number four in the nation but we did end up with a winning record and a bowl game. It could've been a lot worse; it turned out to be decent. We've got a lot of good players here, you can always make excuses about whatever could happen why a guy goes somewhere or the other - he didn't want to come here. If a player said this, that or the other he just didn't want to come here.

On the immediate status of incoming recruits
We let them compete with the players who are here when they come in and then if they're a freshman and it doesn't look like they're going to play very much we'll say `hey let's go ahead and redshirt them'. We encourage every player coming in to compete for playing time and then we'll make that decision.

On the high number of junior college recruits
A lot of these guys we knew about earlier, like Quay (Marquavius) Lewis we knew about him for quite awhile. A lot of schools recruit the junior colleges. Dante Sawyer signed with us earlier, Dexter Wideman had signed with us and now they're qualified and ready to come.

On the quarterback situation heading into spring ball and beyond
We have three quarterbacks here, Perry Orth, Connor Mitch and Michael Scarnecchia, and Pharoh Cooper can play quarterback, Terry Googer could jump in there if we have to. Lorenzo Nunez will come and probably watch a bunch of practices on the weekends, but the three guys that are here now will battle it out to see which one's the best of them and then in preseason next year we'll keep battling it out and see what we have for our first game. As we all know, Dylan (Thompson) went the distance this year, he played just about every play the whole season so we're pretty fortunate he stayed healthy. These guys may surprise you, they're working hard on their own in the weight room, jumping rope, and out on the field when I walk by there's a bunch of them throwing the ball around. We really got a group of players with a wonderful attitude and they're fired up about next season.

Goals for spring ball
I think it's important that we learn to play football a little bit more like we used to play around here as far as full-speed effort, passion, intensity. We've got to go at each other a little bit more than we had in the past. I don't think I did a very good job of going full speed as much as we needed as it turned out over the course of the year. We've got to practice faster and more physical through the spring.

On his relationship with the Camper family
His dad was on the team in '89 (at Duke). He wasn't a starter. He played a little bit here and there but I would see him at our Duke reunions. Actually late we found about Blake, we don't really recruit that much of the Tide area, Norfolk, Virginia Beach, but Coach Elliott found him and thought we should go after him. We brought him in on a visit and he loved it and became a Gamecock.

Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator Steve Spurrier Jr.

On the youth movement in the receiving corps
We met the other day with a few of them. You get two hours a week to start to meet with them so we'll meet tomorrow. You have seven guys that haven't played and I think there are some good players in that group. It'll be an important spring for all those guys, and we'll get four or five guys ready to go play.

Reasons for the number of decommitments
The biggest reason for that many is just the large number. We set out to recruit a large number of guys, so any time you have 31 commitments, I mean two years ago when we signed 20 it was a lot less. Any time you start with a huge number there's a possibility of that (de-commits). The other thing I said before is when you recruit a bunch of really good players and everybody is still recruiting them, sometimes that happens. When we first got here we didn't have a lot of other teams recruiting guys committed to us so that's certainly changed around here. We have to do the best we can, at the end of the day the class we signed are the guys that are supposed to be there. The offensive line especially, we've replaced them with some excellent players, give Coach Elliott a hand for hustling around and finding five really good linemen and we feel really good about that class. Some come and some go, but at the end of the day you have to put together the best group you can.

Pulling Kyle Markway from his home state of Missouri
I'll tell you what, he was always excited about being here. We watched him on tape, we contacted him early, we got around his family early, they came out here on several visits this year and just fell in love with the place. He had some people in Iowa, had some people in Missouri, had a lot of schools contacting him throughout the year but he and his family were strong committed to us the whole time.

On Christian Owens' potential and his recruitment
That process happened pretty quick. Within about a week we hustled to do as much research as we could on him. He's a big, tall target, runs pretty well, catches the ball, obviously something we don't have as a wide receiver. Excellent young man, excellent student, very disciplined, hardworking, he's here every day. He and Jerad Washington are both great kids, work as hard they can all the time. I'm looking forward to watching both those guys.