COLUMBIA — If the intent was to lessen the drama, to let his teammates have their own day, it backfired.
But the drama is over now.
Jordan Burch, the highest-rated recruit South Carolina has had since Jadeveon Clowney, is a Gamecock.
"We really appreciate his mother, Henri, trusting us and sending her son to the in-state school," coach Will Muschamp said in a statement. "Jordan is an explosive athlete, extremely smart and versatile player who can do a lot of things on the football field and I can't wait to coach him."
Burch sent his long-awaited national letter-of-intent to USC on Thursday and it was cleared in the evening. The defensive end prospect, rated the No. 4 recruit in the country by ESPN, committed to the Gamecocks in December but had prolonged sending the letter, which only prolonged his recruitment.
A day after he attended a ceremony with his Hammond School teammates while wearing a USC cap, Burch’s paperwork was officially cleared. It gave USC its first class of multiple five-star recruits (running back MarShawn Lloyd is already enrolled) since 2002.
Burch’s recruitment was always tight-lipped but the letter’s absence caused no shortage of rumors, or schools that were still interested. Burch took an official visit to national champion LSU the weekend before he took his official visit to USC, but in the end, he never wavered from his initial pledge.
A force all over the field for Hammond, Burch prepped under Gamecock alum Erik Kimrey. He was a captain for the recent UnderArmour All-America game and was named the top player of the Elite Under Armour Camp in 2019.
“I think proximity to home was big,” Kimrey said in December. “I think coach (Will) Muschamp built a great relationship with Jordan’s family."