April 17, 2014

Georgia tight end Connor Redmond has USC out front after making a recent visit

Connor Redmond

Connor Redmond

USC currently is the team to beat for TE Connor Redmond (6-4 230) of Decatur, GA following a recent visit for a spring practice.  Redmond got a good look at the program and the city and liked everything he saw.

“I really like the city of Columbia,” he said.  “It’s not too far from home but far enough to be away from home.  I really like the coaches.  They are laid back and down to earth.  And I like that they’ve been doing good and they have new facilities that are impressive.”

Redmond also has visited Boston College, Vanderbilt, Georgia, Auburn and NC State.  He doesn’t have any more visits planned right now but would like to Georgia again, Ole Miss, Florida, Florida State, Mississippi State and Clemson, though he’s not hearing much from the Tigers.

GA Mangus is recruiting Redmond for USC and he has made a strong sales pitch.  “He said he likes my athletic ability and sees me fitting into their offense quickly and well,” Redmond said.  “He says I’m a tough guy and you have to be a tough guy to play the position.  He really liked my film.”

Redmond is not ready to make a commitment but it’s apparent USC has already taken his heart.  “South Carolina has showed me the most love and I’ve showed it back to them.  I’m not close on committing but USC is on top of the list.”

Redmond wants to take more visits and make the decision by the start of the season.  Last season he caught 37 passes for 400 yards and 6 touchdowns in 9 games.  He missed two games with a knee injury.

The Citadel extends the Gamecocks’ miseries with a 10-8 victory

Celek homered for USC in a losing effort (File Photo)

Celek homered for USC in a losing effort (File Photo)

Despite homers from Brison Celek and DC Arendas as well as seven hits and 10 walks at the plate, sixth ranked South Carolina fell to The Citadel 10-8 on Wednesday evening in non-conference action at Joseph P. Riley Jr. Park. The Gamecocks fall to 28-9 with The Citadel now 15-23 overall.  It’s USC’s fourth straight loss.

Kyle Martin went 2-for-4 with a run scored and a pair of RBI to lead the Gamecocks at the plate. Celek was also 2-for-4 and Arendas reached base five times with a homer, three walks and a hit by pitch. The Citadel belted out 12 hits and benefited from eight walks and three Gamecock errors to score double-digits on South Carolina, just the second time this season the Gamecocks have allowed 10 or more runs. Mason Davis went 3-for-4 with three runs, a homer and a pair of RBI. Tyler Griffin added two hits and three RBI with Drew DeKerlegand also with a homer and two RBI to lead the Bulldogs.

Austin Livingston earned the win for The Citadel and is now 2-4 on the year. He allowed five runs, four earned, on three hits with four walks and eight strikeouts in five innings of work. Skylar Hunter earned his seventh save of the year with a scoreless ninth inning. South Carolina starter Matthew Vogel suffered the loss and is 0-1 for the season. He allowed five runs, four earned on three hits with two walks and two strikeouts in 2.1 innings.

The Citadel took a one-run lead in the bottom of the first. Davis led off with a single, stole second base and scored on Griffin’s two-out RBI single up the middle.

Arendas tied the game with a solo homer in the second inning. Arendas jumped on the first pitch he saw with a blast to right field for his fourth homer of the season.

The Gamecocks broke ahead 2-1 in the third inning. Tanner English led off with a double and advanced to third on a wild pitch. After a Gene Cone walk and with one out, English would score as the Gamecocks successfully executed a double steal.

The Bulldogs answered with a four-run frame to take a 5-2 lead. A fielding error by Jordan Gore at second base and Davis’ second hit of the evening opened the bottom of the third for The Citadel. After a sacrifice bunt moved over Davis and Ryan Kilgallen, a walk to Bo Thompson and a walk to Tyler Griffin tied the game and ended the night for Vogel. Left-hander Vince Fiori would walk Drew DeKerlegand on four pitches and would have to come out of the game due to a sprained lat on his left side of his body. Two more runs would then score for The Citadel as a fly ball by pinch hitter Connor Walsh would be lost in the lights and would fall in left-center for a single.

The Citadel made it 6-2 in the fourth inning with Davis driving in Calvin Orth with a sac fly to center field.

South Carolina responded with a three-run fifth inning to cut the deficit to a run. Gene Cone drew a walk on an eight-pitch at bat followed by a walk to Elliott Caldwell on seven pitches. That set the stage for Kyle Martin, who drove a 2-0 pitch into right field for a two-run double. Martin eventually scored on Grayson Greiner’s sac fly to left-center.

The Citadel would get two runs back in the bottom of the fifth to make it 8-5. Drew DeKerlegand led off the bottom of the fifth with a solo home run to right field, his second homer of the year to push the Bulldogs’ lead back to two runs. Ryan Kilgallen added a two-out RBI base hit.

Carolina countered in the sixth with two more runs to inch to within one run. Brison Celek opened the frame with a bang with a solo homer to left field, his first homer of the year. Walks to Arendas and Gore followed. After Tanner English’s sacrifice bunt, Arendas would score on a sacrifice fly by Gene Cone.

The Citadel however would score two more in the seventh to go ahead 10-7. Davis hit a solo homer and Griffin added a two-out RBI double.

The Gamecocks would plate a run in the top of the eighth inning benefitting from two Bulldog errors. Gene Cone reached on shortstop Johnathan Stokes’ fielding error and scored on a two-out throwing error by third baseman Bailey Rush.

South Carolina returns to SEC play this weekend with a three-game series at Auburn. First pitch for the opener is 7 p.m. ET on Friday. Saturday’s game will be televised on CBS Sports Network with a first pitch at 5 p.m. ET. Sunday’s series finale is 2 p.m. ET on CSS.

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Brewton is still committed to Florida State but would like to talk to Clemson

calvin brewton

Calvin Brewton

Florida State commit DB Calvin Brewton of Miami is expecting Clemson to stop by his school during spring practice. Brewton has shown interest in the Tigers and is considering a visit.

Since committing to the Seminoles, contact has waned from Clemson but a positive conversation this spring could mean a visit.

“I’ve always been interested in them,” Brewton said. “I know I am committed to FSU right now but depending on what they say, I still could visit.”

Brewton said that he remains committed to Florida State but added, “(My) recruitiment is still open.”

He did not name any other schools he could visit in the future. Brewton’s last visit was to Tallahassee several months ago.

Elite Florida defensive end Cowart considering a summer time visit to USC

Byron Cowart

Byron Cowart

Rated as one of the top prospects for the 2015 class by several publications, DE Byron Cowart of Seffner, FL is considering a trip to USC over the summer. Cowart has Oregon has his leader but said he is considering several schools.

“They are my leader but there is not much difference between them and a lot of other schools that have offered,” he said.

Cowart has offers from just about every major program in the country to include Clemson and USC. He said that he is interested in both. His high school teammate, OL Cody Waldrop, plays for the Gamecocks.

“Cody talks to me a lot and let’s me know what is going on up there,” he said. “He just tells me what a great opportunity it is to play early and, of course, I know all about (Jadeveon) Clowney.”

Clemson assistant Marion Hobby is Cowart’s connection to the Tigers. “I know he went to Tennessee and played in the NFL,” he said of Hobby. “He talks to me a lot about what they have to offer and I feel like I fit their scheme. It’s another school that would give me an opportunity to play early.”

Cowart plans to attend The Opening at Oregon this summer and mentioned Notre Dame and Alabama as other schools he would like to visit.

“I know my teammate visits North Carolina and USC every year and, if he does (this summer), I’ll probably take that trip with him,” Cowart said. “Why not? It would give me a chance to see those schools.”

Cowart is taking his time with the recruiting process. He admitted that he could be more diligent. “Everybody is telling me that I should take more visits and take advantage of my time to see as many places as possible but right now, I just want to get ready for spring practice,” he said.

Furman adds two more signees to their 2014 basketball recruiting class

Daniel Fowler

Daniel Fowler

Prep guards Daniel Fowler (Acworth, Ga.) and John Davis III (Beachwood, Ohio) have signed national letters of intent to join the Furman men’s basketball program for the 2014-15 season, it was announced on Wednesday by Paladin head coach Niko Medved.

“These two guys bring a great combination of skill, toughness and character into our program,” said Medved.  “They both have a great concept of team and their winning backgrounds will help us as we continue the process of building a championship program.”

Fowler and Davis III join a Paladin signing class that also includes 6-foot-7 forward Geoff Beans (Toledo, Ohio) and 6-foot-2 guard Devin Sibley (Knoxville, Tenn.), who inked national letters of intent during the November signing period.

Fowler, a 6-foot-4 prep standout capable of playing all three guard positions, was named first team 5A all-state and ranked No. 13 in Georgia’s 2014 senior class by HoopSeen.com after averaging 17.4 points, 7.6 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game while guiding his team to a 29-2 record during the 2013-14 campaign.

A four-year starter who scored 1,513 career points, he paced Allatoona to four straight state playoff appearances, including a pair of elite eight finishes.  Fowler played in the Georgia North/South All-Star Game following both his junior and senior seasons.  Fowler was named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s 5A All-State second team.

A standout at Beachwood High School, Davis III led the Bison to a Chagrin Valley Conference Championship and Associated Press No. 1 ranking in Division III during the 2014 season.  A three-time All-Chagrin Valley Conference pick and 2013 and 2014 Chagrin Valley Conference MVP, the 5-foot-11 Davis III was named second team All-Ohio as a senior.