COLUMBIA, S.C. (TheBigSpur.com) - The South Carolina football program signed a small class of players on the first day of the early signing period but head coach Shane Beamer is happy with all seven players who chose to stick with him and the program.
At this point, Beamer doesn’t have any players he personally recruited who have pledged to the program and signed their National Letter of Intent, but that very well could change over the next two days of the three-day signing window.
Right now, Beamer has five players on the offensive side of the ball and a pair of players on defense. The five offensive players are all from the high school ranks while one high school defensive lineman and a junior college defensive back join the ranks.
There could be more soon, though.
“I’m hoping there are going to be a few more announcements as we go the next couple of days,” Beamer said on Wednesday in a National Signing Day press conference.
“A couple of guys, when I took over as the head coach, they had no plans to sign in December. They were going to wait until February and flat out told me that. Over our conversations over the last week and a half, a couple of these guys decided to go ahead and sign today, which I’m so thankful for and excited about. Through our conversations, they had that trust in me, they believed in me and said let’s go ahead and get this done today.”
Here’s what Beamer had to say about each of the seven players who signed with the program on Wednesday.
Hometown/High School: Bethlehem, Ga./Hebron Christian
Colten Gauthier, a quarterback from over in Georgia, was our very first signee this morning. It was pretty cool as the head coach at South Carolina, he will always be the very first signee that came in. Really productive football player, a three-year starter that’s thrown for over 2,000 yards every single season as a starter. The one thing I want to commend him on that I’m really excited about is he’s the kind of guy who is a leader you can build a program around. He did an amazing job of keeping this class intact, an amazing job of recruiting other players who weren’t committed and really excited about what he brings to the table.
Position: Defensive back
Hometown/High School: Woodruff/Georgia Military
Marcellas Dial, from Georgia Military, a South Carolina guy and in-state kid, originally from Woodruff. Defensive back, there are a lot of major positions of need but defensive back is certainly an area that we’ve got to improve our depth and get some more guys in there. I really enjoyed visiting with him. Just like with all the guys, so many FaceTime calls and regular calls the last couple of weeks. His energy, it doesn’t go up and down. Every time we talk, he’s energized and has a smile on his face. He has some length at the position that allows us some flexibility in playing some press coverage on defense as a defensive back, playing off. He was a great long jumper in high school as well, so he has some great athleticism.
Position: Offensive line
Hometown/High School: Fairburn, Ga./Creekside
Jordan Davis, he’s another guy who has a lot of positional versatility. He can play offensive tackle, and can play either side. He can also play offensive guard as well. He has a lot of upside and potential as well. He’s a very, very big man. He has athleticism. He’s a guy whose best football is in front of him.
Position: Wide receiver
Hometown/High School: Alabaster, Ala./Thompson
Sam Reynolds, a great athlete from over in Alabama. He’s a guy who’s just a playmaker and can do a lot of different things. He can play in the slot at the wide receiver position, can be a third down back. He has some special taems background, and I’m excited about what he can bring in the return game. He comes from a great program in Thompson High School that just won a state championship, so he’s used to winning. I like the fact that we have a lot of guys who are used to winning and have been successful. I’m really excited about Sam being a part of the program.
Hometown/High School: Rock Hill/South Pointe
O’Mega Blake. Anytime you get a guy from South Pointe High School, you know you’ve done something well. There’s been a long line of great players who have come out of South Pointe High School, and he’s the next one. I hope the next of many, many more, for sure. He comes from a great program and is being coached by a great player up there in DeVonte Holloman, who I was around before when I was an assistant coach at South Carolina. I’ve really enjoyed talking to DeVonte a lot over the last few weeks. I want to commend him on a great program he’s running. I’m excited about O’Mega and what he brings to the table. Multi-talented, can do a lot of things, very productive. He’s a guy you really enjoy talking to. He and I FaceTimed back and forth about seven times on Sunday. He wanted to talk, ask questions, things like that. I’m excited about his desire to join the program.
Position: Defensive line
Hometown/High School: Goldsboro, N.C./Eastern Wayne
Nick Barrett is a defensive lineman from North Carolina. Great size. Really athletic, great length, has long arms, and that’s what you’re looking for at the defensive line position. He’s a guy that can play inside and has a lot of initial quickness. When you watch defensive linemen, being able to see their get-off, how they’re able to strike people and knock offensive linemen back jumps off the tape with him. Really solid, high-character guy who is going to be an asset on the field and in the locker room. We really feel like if he had played – I don’t put a lot of stock in where guys are ranked and things like that, but he’s a guy who certainly would have skyrocketed, in our opinion, up the rankings if he had played.
Position: Running back
Hometown/High School: Leesburg, Ga./Lee Count
Juju McDowell, from a great program in Lee County that is still making a run in the playoffs, so we wish him luck. Just a heck of a playmaker. Versatile, tough, dynamic with the ball in his hands. He can be a weapon out of the backfield as well, which we’re excited about. He has an edge to himself, he certainly has some speed as well. I’m really pumped about him being a Gamecock and the instant impact he’s going to have on the field.