Quarterback Michael Scarnecchia of Fleming Island, Fla., committed to South Carolina on Sunday night, becoming the quarterback for the Gamecocks’ 2014 class.
Scarnecchia (6-4, 192) also had an offer from UAB and was drawing interest from Syracuse, Arkansas State and some Ivy League schools.
Scarnecchia attended one of Steve Spurrier’s camps over the summer, and that’s when the interest in Scarnecchia began to grow.
“Coach Spurrier saw me in camp and really liked me,” Scarnecchia said. “I was at the Kentucky game, and after the game I sat down with him and he said he was thinking about an offer and he liked my film. He came through with the offer the week after the Arkansas game.”
This season, Scarnecchia said he’s around 1,000 yards passing with 18 touchdowns and one interception, and he’s completing 65 percent of his attempts.
As a junior, he passed for 1,500 yards and 19 touchdowns with 3 interceptions.
Scarnecchia said Spurrier did nearly all of the recruiting with him, though he talked some with area recruiter Steve Spurrier Jr. He is USC’s 14th commitment for the 2014 class.
In other recruiting news:
USC DL commitment Abu Lamin of Fort Scott JC, Kan., insists he’s 100 percent with his commitment to USC, calling the strength of the pledge a 10 on a scale of 10. But Tennessee, Alabama and Auburn continue to recruit him. Lamin has one official visit opportunity left and said last week he’ll decide in a week or two if he’ll take it. Right now, he said that visit likely would go to Tennessee. Lamin said he’s in weekly contact with USC talking with Steve Spurrier and Deke Adams. Lamin has not been to USC this season. He said he may try to get there over the Thanksgiving weekend when he’s home in Fayetteville, N.C.
Shrine Bowl WR Tyshun Samuel of Chapman is continuing his knack of finding the end zone this season. Through seven games, he had 15 touchdown catches — 29 receptions in all — and 609 yards. He had 20 touchdown catches last season. Samuel has no new offers to add to his list of Vanderbilt, North Carolina, N.C. State, Maryland, Charlotte, East Carolina, Old Dominion and Appalachian State. The only game he’s been to this season was the Vanderbilt at USC contest, where he talked some with his Gamecocks recruiter Shawn Elliott. Vanderbilt and North Carolina remain his two favorites.
Shrine Bowl DL Zeek Rodney of South Pointe was offered by Syracuse last week. He also has offers from Boston College, S.C. State, Charlotte, Louisiana-Lafayette, Marshall, Appalachian State, Toledo and Ball State. Two of his official visits are set with Marshall and Boston College.
DL Quaven Ferguson of Easley committed to Duke. He also had an offer from Furman and was drawing interest from Georgia Tech.
OL Zack Bailey of Summerville made his second trip of the season to Clemson on Saturday for the Florida State game. He also was on hand for the Georgia game. He’s not been to any other games this season but plans to be at Florida-USC, Clemson-USC, and he hopes to get to Oregon and Georgia Tech. Bailey said his top five schools right now are USC, Clemson, Georgia, Oregon and Florida State, with no order, and he’s still considering others.
USC is in an early battle with Penn State for junior OL Ryan Bates of Warminster, Pa. Bates has nine offers in all and has the Gamecocks and Nittany Lions at the top of his list. He visited over the summer and wants to make it back down to Columbia. Bates has taken just one visit this season when he was at Penn State for the Eastern Michigan game. His offers are from USC, Penn State, Virginia, Rutgers, Temple, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Pitt and Boston College. Other schools are showing a lot of interest. He is taking his time in making a decision and does not have any other visits scheduled.
WR Michael Bowman of Havelock, N.C., plans to be at USC for the Florida and Clemson games. Bowman is considered one of the top prospects in North Carolina’s 2015 class and has USC and N.C. State as his top two, with no current leader. “I camped down there (USC) this summer and I liked the atmosphere,” he said. “It was the Black Magic camp and I learned a lot. I work on the things I learned there every day. It seems like it would be a pretty cool place to play.” He speaks with USC coaches regularly and says the Gamecocks are showing a lot of interest. “They just like how I get open and think I can make plays,” Bowman said. His other visits this season have been to N.C. State and North Carolina. The Florida and Clemson games in Columbia are the only two games he plans to attend the rest of this season.
WR Akilian Butler (5-11, 180) of Mesquite, Texas, was offered by Clemson recruiter Chad Morris last spring, along with his teammate QB Chason Virgil, and the two were at Clemson for the Florida State game. Last season, Butler caught 32 balls for over 400 yards and 3 touchdowns. He has 5 touchdown catches so far this season. Clemson is Butler’s lone offer at this point, but he’s also hearing from Notre Dame, Georgia, Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor and Texas A&M. He was at the Texas-Oklahoma game and has also been to Baylor and Texas. Butler does not have favorites right now.
RB Rocky Reid (6-0, 210) of Concord, N.C., had rushed for 1,692 yards and 19 touchdowns going into his game Friday night. He said that rushing figure leads the state of North Carolina. Not only is Reid burning up gridirons in the Tar Heel state, he’s wearing out the highway between his home and Clemson. Reid made his third visit to Clemson last weekend for the Boston College game and planned to be back for the Florida State showdown. Reid has talked with Dabo Swinney and running backs coach Tony Elliott, but so far no hint of an offer. He has offers from Charlotte and Ohio and he’s also getting interest from North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest, Georgia, Arkansas, Ohio State and East Carolina.
Duke is the early leader for QB Will Brunson of Carolina Forest. He is hearing from USC, Clemson, Duke, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia Tech, East Carolina and North Carolina. Duke, however, appears to be courting Brunson the hardest. Brunson has visited several schools including USC and Clemson and was in Columbia for the Kentucky game. He plans to attend the Tennessee-Vanderbilt game as well as UNC-Duke. Through seven games Brunson had thrown for 2,061 yards and 21 touchdowns.
RHP Nick Neidert (6-1, 170) of Lawrenceville, Ga., announced a commitment to USC on Thursday night on his Twitter page. “Proud to say that I committed to THE University of South Carolina. Can’t wait to call myself an official Gamecock,” Neidert wrote. Neidert also plays shortstop and third base. His fastball has been clocked at 91 mph. Neidert is the 11th commitment for the Gamecocks’ 2015 class and the seventh pitcher.