Samuel commits to Gamecocks; Malone picks Vols over Tigers
Clemson has Dabo. South Carolina now has Deebo.
Wide receiver Tyshun "Deebo" Samuel of Chapman committed to the Gamecocks last week. The Shrine Bowl selection also considered North Carolina and Vanderbilt, but the Gamecocks moved to the top of his list once they offered him late last month.
"I've been waiting on this for a while," Samuel said. "When they decided they wanted to take me as a receiver, they weren't going to take another one."
Samuel made a couple of visits to USC this season and got a good feeling for the program.
"I like the environment and the way they treat their players," he said. "With the receivers we'll have there, no one will stop us."
This season, Samuel had 61 catches for 1,184 yards and 15 touchdowns. He also scored 13 touchdowns rushing and two more on interceptions. He is the 15th commitment for USC's 2014 class and the third wide receiver.
It was a choice between Clemson orange or Tennessee orange for wide receiver Josh Malone of Gallatin, Tenn., and on Wednesday, Malone announced he would stay in his home state and play for Vols coach Butch Jones.
"I felt like I had a better opportunity there," he said. "The opportunity to come in early (and play) was better at Tennessee, and I felt comfortable with that situation."
In other recruiting news:
Defensive end Dante Sawyer of Suwanee, Ga., said he'll announce his college commitment with either USC, Missouri or Auburn on his birthday, Dec. 17. Sawyer visited USC for the Mississippi State game.
Defensive back DJ Smith of Marietta, Ga., met last Monday with USC recruiters Grady Brown, Lorenzo Ward and GA Mangus, and he talked on the phone with Steve Spurrier. Mangus is his primary recruiter, and Smith said the two have developed a close relationship.
"We talked a good bit," Smith said. "It felt like family."
He set his official visit with the Gamecocks for Jan. 17. He also plans to set official visits with Clemson and Tennessee. Smith said he's no longer considering Georgia. Smith said as of now he doesn't have a favorite and will wait until National Signing Day before revealing his decision.
Defensive back Wesley Green of Lithonia, Ga., visited USC unofficially for the Clemson game. On Monday morning, USC recruiters Lorenzo Ward and Grady Brown visited with Green at his school. "They were the second ones in," Green's coach, Cortez Allen, said. "I think it went real well. They're getting an official visit set up for mid-January."
Offensive lineman Damian Prince (6-7, 310) of Forestville, Md., recently cut his list from 10 to five, and USC was one of the survivors and will get an official visit from him in January. Also on his short list are Florida, Florida State, Maryland and Miami.
Defensive lineman Dexter Wideman of Saluda, a Florida State commitment, was visited by Mangus on Tuesday night and has set an official visit with the Gamecocks for Jan. 17.
Wideman will also take an official to Florida State, but no date has been set. Wideman visited USC for the Clemson game. The decision is difficult for Wideman, and the Gamecocks are giving him a lot to think about.
"They told me that if I come in and work hard, I'll get to make an impact as a freshman," he said. "That's really important to me. I want to play as a freshman."
According to the Ohio State recruiting site Bucknuts, Ohio State coach Urban Meyer will make his in-home visit with LB Raekwon McMillan of Hinesville, Ga., on Dec. 15, the day before McMillan is scheduled to make his announcement. Clemson coach Dabo Swinney visited McMillan last week and Alabama coach Nick Saban is due in this week. McMillan also is considering Auburn and Georgia.
Saban made an in-home visit Thursday with Spring Valley LB Christian Miller. Miller has been committed to Alabama since August and has been holding firm to that pledge. Miller was picked for the Shrine Bowl but will miss it due to some offseason surgery.
TigerIllustrated reported WR Trevion Thompson of Durham has set an official visit with Clemson for Jan. 17. He has been to Ohio State and is going to N.C. State this weekend. He's a Shrine Bowler who had 57 catches for 987 yards and 14 touchdowns this season.
USC is not finished flushing out prospects to offer for the 2014 class. On Wednesday, recruiter Grady Brown visited DE Kevin Bronson (6-4, 233) of Delray Beach, FLa., and offered him. Bronson had 58 tackles with 20 tackles for loss and six sacks this season and said he was used at all the positions along the line.
Bronson has set an official visit with the Gamecocks for Jan. 17. He was at Rutgers over the weekend and is set to visit Virginia Tech on Jan. 24. He's also looking at Arkansas for a visit and is also considering Nebraska, Central Florida and South Florida.
Punter Corbin Daly (6-3, 185) of Charlotte decommitted from Texas, and USC has contacted him. He likes the Gamecocks, Tennessee, North Carolina and Charlotte but has not yet been offered. Daley was picked for the Army All American game and averaged over 45 yards per punt this season.