#STRecruiting: #Gamecocks enter battle for big load across the border

Curtis Neal

DT Curtis Neal (6-1 290) of Cornelius, NC is not going to get any taller, but his recruiting stature is growing. Neal plays with an attitude, feeling some schools have looked the other way because he’s not 2 or 3 inches taller. Those who have taken notice of his play have been impressed as he has over 30 offers. USC is one of the most recent schools to jump in.

“Coach (Jimmy) Lindsey called me and he said he really liked my film and he’s really going to pursue me hard,” Neal said.  “He really likes my get off.  I think they were scared to offer because I was short, but I guess my game play forced their hand. They are probably going to have to work their butts off to get in real conversation.”

Neal named a top group a couple of months ago of Ole Miss, Southern Cal, Mississippi State, Oregon and Virginia. But he’s loosened things up since then and is talking to all-comers. Though USC was kind of late to the party, he has enough interest in the Gamecocks to give them a look and a listen.

“I always thought South Carolina was a great school and they develop great players,” Neal said.  “I was watching one of their defensive tackles, Zacch Pickens, he’s a really good defensive tackle in the SEC.  I always thought they were pretty good, just never thought they had interest in me.  They have just as much of a chance as everyone else.  I’m wide open right now.”

Neal said he wants to take official visits before making a choice. He’s not yet decided on those visits but he has an idea of what he’s looking for in a favorite school.

“The big thing for me is how do I fit into their scheme,” Neal said.  “Some people want me at the three (technique).  Some people like me at nose.  And, do I like the coaching staff, and do I see myself at the school, things like that.”

Neal is coming off a season of 62 tackles and 7 sacks. He’s a four-star prospect in the 247Sports Composite and is ranked the #26 defensive tackle nationally in the 2022 class.

Some other notes:

  • USC offered CB Nick Cull (6-1 180) of Donalsonville, GA. Alabama, Ole Miss, Auburn, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Arkansas are some of his other offers.
  • USC offered 2023 TE Ty Lockwood (6-5 220) of Nashville.
  • USC re-offered 2023 TE Luckie Lawson of Norcross, GA.
  • USC target CB Jordan Allen of Lafayette, LA was offered by Louisville.
  • Myrtle Beach QB Ryan Burger was offered by Tulane.
  • DT Tyler Rasberry of Blythewood committed to North Carolina Wesleyan.

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