South Carolina, Clemson target DBs

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said he does not think he would have been hired as Clemson's head coach had he not beaten South Carolina first in 2008 when he was the interim coach. (Gwinn Davis/Special to The Post and Courier)

Yusuf Corker, a defensive back from Stockbridge, Georgia, spent Friday at South Carolina, and the visit pushed the Gamecocks back ahead of Tennessee on his list.

“They really need corners for this year,” Corker said. “It’s a great opportunity. They are on the come up. They are taking six DBs in this class, and I’m one they want because I can play safety, corner and nickel.”

Corker left Columbia around noon on Saturday and he said he nearly made a commitment before departing.

“Tennessee was the favorite after I visited there, and now USC is the favorite,” he said. “Coming to South Carolina, I have a better chance of starting than going to Tennessee. I came real close to committing.”

Other schools he’s interested in are Duke, North Carolina and Vanderbilt — all schools he has visited.

Defensive back Jamyest Williams of Decatur, Georgia, has held USC and Clemson in high regard since early in his recruiting process and he still does. He has not yet formulated an official top five, but when he does, he will have both of them on it. He has visited each twice this year. Earlier this month, he was at USC for a practice and at Clemson for the spring game.

Williams said USC is recruiting him the hardest of all the schools. He also went to Georgia for the spring game and he’s going to Ohio State on May 7. Williams said he’ll probably make his decision during the season, and he’s looking at the opportunity to graduate early.

In other recruiting news:

USC added another quarterback target last week for 2017 with an offer to Wren’s Jay Urich (6-3, 170). The Gamecocks are the first Power 5 conference school to offer. He also has offers from Coastal Carolina, Furman, Eastern Kentucky, Harvard, Jackson State, Mercer, S.C. State, North Dakota State and Gardner-Webb.

Urich also is drawing interest from Duke, Kentucky, East Carolina, N.C. State, North Carolina, Penn State, Vanderbilt, Texas and Virginia. He has made recent visits to USC, Duke, East Carolina and Vanderbilt. Urich said he doesn’t have a leader at this point.

Last season, Urich rushed for 1,031 yards and 19 touchdowns and passed for 2,760 yards and 21 touchdowns.

Linebacker Justin Foster of Shelby, N.C., is one of the top players in his state and one of the most heavily recruited linebackers in the country. He’s approaching 30 offers, with Clemson, USC, Alabama, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Auburn, Duke, Georgia, LSU, Michigan, N.C. State, Notre Dame, Florida and Texas A&M among those on board.

Foster said he’s not trimmed his list and is still looking around but feels Clemson, USC, Tennessee, N.C. State and Kentucky are recruiting him the hardest right now. He has visited Clemson, USC, Virginia Tech, N.C. State, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama and will visit Georgia in a couple of weeks. Foster said right now USC is not as high on his list as Clemson but is still on his list. He did say Tennessee is also high on the list along with Clemson.

He will narrow his list in the next month or so.

One of the most important recruits in USC’s 2016 class is DB Jamarcus King of Coffeyville (Kansas) JC. The highly regarded cornerback had hoped to enroll at midterm but had to finish up some academic work this semester. King said Wednesday the work is nearly complete and the results are good. “Everything should be good and I should be there in May,” King said. “I will be done in early May with all my classes. They’re all good to go.”

Defensive end J’Bril Glaze (6-3, 250) of Tampa currently has two SEC programs as his leaders.

“South Carolina basically is at the top of the list, tied at the top with Kentucky,” Glaze said. “I talk with coach (Will) Muschamp and the whole staff. They are pretty straight forward about how they would play me, similar to how they played (Jadeveon) Clowney, outside off the edge, and how they played Jonathan Bullard. That fits perfectly with my playing style. And they produce a lot of great athletes and develop players. And I really want to play in the SEC.”

Clemson is one of the favorites for DE Malik Herring (6-4, 261) of Forsyth, Ga. Herring attended the Boston College game at Clemson last season, a junior day in March and the spring game. He has developed a close relationship with the Tigers and in evaluating their defensive end personnel he sees an opportunity for early playing time.

Herring also has visited Georgia and Alabama. He has not narrowed his list, which is made up of offers from coast to coast, but he is talking the most to Clemson, Southern Cal, Georgia, Alabama, Florida and Tennessee. “I’m favoring Clemson,” Herring said. “Ahead of, I don’t know. A big lead? It’s getting there.” However, a Georgia fan website reported last week that Herring is expected to choose Georgia soon.

USC is going hard after defensive back Tre Shaw (6-0, 180) of Ellenwood, Ga., and has worked its way into good position with him at this point. Shaw is sought after as a corner and a nickel but can also play safety. “They are very interested in me and I’m very interested in them,” Shaw said of the Gamecocks.

Shaw said he has 26 offers and no short list but some of the ones he’s most interested in at this point are USC, North Carolina, Auburn, Georgia, NC State, Michigan, Florida and Tennessee. He feels like USC and North Carolina are recruiting the hardest. There’s no timetable on a decision.

A USC defensive end target in Florida is Jake Lichtenstein (6-5, 245) of Weston and he’s planning to check out the Gamecocks this summer. He recently visited Kentucky. The Gamecocks and Wildcats are two of his top 10 right now along with West Virginia, Pittsburgh, Mississippi State, Syracuse, Oregon State, Temple, Rutgers and Iowa State from his 18 offers. Lichtenstein said he doesn’t have a favorite at this point and hopes to make his decision by the end of the summer.

LB KJ Britt of Oxford, AL was offered by Clemson. He was at Clemson’s spring game. He also has a USC offer and several others and has been favoring Georgia.

USC target OL TJ Moore of Charlotte was offered by Virginia Tech while another target, TE Drake DeIuliis of Charlotte, committed Friday to the Hokies.

USC Wednesday was at Nassau JC, NY to watch OL Badara Traore (6-8 310), a player the Gamecocks offered soon after the new staff took over. Arizona State, Louisville, Baylor, Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Auburn, Texas Tech, Arkansas and Iowa State are some of his other offers.

Clemson is one of the top five with DB Jacobe Clement of Charlotte. He also has Tennessee, North Carolina, Wake Forest and NC State.

USC target DE Joe Anderson of Copiah-Lincoln JC, MS was offered by Southern Cal.

Clemson commitment WR Amari Rodgers will undergo surgery for a torn labrum and will miss part of his senior season. Rodgers said he was injured during a 7 on 7 competition a few weeks ago.

Clemson commitment OL Blake Vinson of Ocala, FL earned an invitation Sunday in Charlotte to The Opening in Oregon this summer. He was one of six players from the combine invited.

Basketball

Khadim Gueye of Senegal and Bradenton, Fla., visited Arizona State last week and is expected to make his decision this week. He also has visited USC, South Florida and Long Beach State.

Delaware transfer PG Kory Holden visited Virginia Tech over the weekend and will visit Baylor this weekend. He also took an official visit to USC and will choose from those three.

USC target 6-8 Keanu Pinder of Hutchinson JC, KS made an official visit to NC State last week.

USC commitment Hassani Gravett of Pensacola JC, FL plans to hold a signing ceremony at his school this coming Wednesday.

USC offers last week: 2017 7-1 center Jason Cudd of Socastee. Cudd averaged 14.9 points and 8 rebounds per game last season as a junior; 2018 6-8 2G Jairus Hamilton of Concord, NC. Some of his other offers are North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia Tech and Hampton.

USC was at Oak Hill Academy, VA Wednesday to check out 2017 2G Devontae Shuler. USC, Clemson, Southern Cal, Florida, Oklahoma State and NC State are among his offers.

Frank Martin last week also scouted 2017 6-8 Ibrahim Doumbia of Miami.

Clemson offers last week were 2017 6-8 Royce Hamm of Houston. He also has Texas, Texas Tech, Nebraska and Kansas State offers; 2017 6-9 Nathan Reuvers of Lakeville, MN. He has 19 offers and some of the others are Washington State, St. Joseph’s, Creighton, DePaul, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Yale; from Phenom Hoop Report, 6-3 Lavar Batts of Concord, NC; 2019 6-7 Joey Baker of Fayetteville, NC; 2019 6-5 Christian Brown of AC Flora. That’s the first offer for Brown who is also drawing interest from USC and several others. He averaged 15 points per game last season.

Clemson checked out 2017 PG Zack Bryant of Jacksonville on Friday. He has a Clemson offer. The Tigers also stopped in on .2018 6-11 Nate Springs of Charlotte.