Who would have ever thought South Carolina would win the SEC East, dethroning power house programs such as Florida, Georgia and Tennessee? The Gamecocks had become almost an afterthought in the past decade and it appeared even the legendary Steve Spurrier couldn’t build up South Carolina to excellence. Well that all changed last year when the Gamecocks signed 5 star running back Marcus Lattimore.
In signing Lattimore, the Gamecocks drastically changed the recruiting landscape of South Carolina and more importantly SEC territory. South Carolina was always able to secure legit recruits, but it wasn’t until Lattimore’s inking when South Carolina hit the map BIG TIME. As a freshmen Lattimore burst onto the playing field rushing for 1197 yards and 17 touchdowns. What kind of impact could one big signing really have though?
The young man in this pictures name is Jadeveon Clowney, the number 1 overall prospect in the entire nation for the class of 2011. Clowney has been described as “arguably the most promising prospect coming out of high school that we have seen in the ESPNU 150 era”. Clowney stands at a staggering 6-6, weighs somewhere around 255 pounds and just so happens to run the 40 yard dash in 4.5 seconds. Did i mention he just turned 18 today?
How good is Clowney?- Clowney compiled 167 tackles and 32.5 sacks in 15 games this season, giving him 400 tackles and 60.5 sacks throughout his career at South Pointe High School (he played running back as a freshmen).
How many awards did young Jadeveon win?- Clowney was named USA Today Defensive Player of the Year, Parade Magazine All-American and Rivals.Com Defensive Player of the Year. Clowney was also selected to play in the Shrine Bowl, where he was named Defensive Player of the Game, and also participated in the Under Armour All-American Game.
Why is this so big for South Carolina?- South Carolina Secured the top player in the state for the second straight year (following Lattimore who owned the SEC’s rushing record on way to becoming national freshmen of the year) and also secured its third straight “Mr. Football” in South Carolina.
Clowney is currently being compared to Julius Peppers,Mario Williams and last years overall #1 prospect Ronald Powell. Another interesting fact with Clowney is the fact that he is extremely humbled. He is described as a very shy kid who hates letting anybody down. He actually decided to push back his announcement due to the fact today was his 18th birthday. Clowney eventually decided to be a Cock and was forced to spurn big time programs such as Alabama, Clemson, Florida State, LSU and others.
What should we expect out of Clowney?- Expect Clowney to eventually be the number 1 selection in the NFL draft…. and that is putting it softly. Enjoy him USC, you got yourselves a player.