USC won another heavyweight recruiting fight with a commitment from four-star CB Keenan Nelson (6-2 180) of Philadelphia. Nelson committed to Gamecocks head coach Shane Beamer on July 11th, the day Beamer put out his commitment alert on Twitter, and went public with his commitment Tuesday.
The Gamecocks beat out the likes of Penn State, Tennessee, West Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Pitt, Notre Dame and Wisconsin for Nelson’s talents, with the decision coming down to USC and the Nittany Lions.
Nelson took official visits in June to Penn State, Temple and USC. The Gamecocks got the final visit late in the month and that weekend made a lasting impression.
“Got to see everything the school had to offer academic-wise and athletic-wise. I had a good time. They want me to play corner, but I could play safety or nickel,” Nelson said following the visit. “I’m a big corner so I can play multiple positions and they can use me different ways.”
USC secondary coach Torrian Gray is doing yeoman’s work in replenishing his positions with this class. Gray wants bigger, physical cornerbacks so he can play tight man-to-man coverage and take receivers off their routes. Nelson said earlier this year Gray viewed him as a perfect fit.
“He said I’m a physical defensive back that likes to play press at the line,” Nelson said. “He said that I would be great for man coverage.”
Nelson is ranked the #16 cornerback nationally and the #3 prospect in Pennsylvania in the 247Sports Composite. His commitment is the 16th for the Gamecocks’ 2022 class, the sixth for the secondary and the second corner. With two transfer defensive backs counting in the class, the Gamecocks now have 18 of their 25 spots allocated, and eight of them are for the secondary.
USC 2022 commitments and transfers
- TYRESE ROSS SAF 6-2 185 TRANSFER WASHINGTON STATE
- KARON PRUNTY CB 6-1 189 TRANSFER KANSAS
- GRAYSON MAINS OT 6-5 265 SUWANEE, GA
- BRADEN DAVIS QB 6-5 185 MIDDLETOWN, DE
- DONOVAN WESTMORELAND LB 6-2 195 GRIFFIN, GA
- KAJUAN BANKS CB 5-10 170 TALLAHASSEE
- JY’VONTE MCCLENDON SAF 6-2 180 LAKELAND, FL
- JAMAAL WHYCE DT 6-4 250 MIAMI
- PEYTON WILLIAMS SAF 6-0 180 ROCKLEDGE, TX
- CASON HENRY OT 6-6 290 MARIETTA, GA
- KYLIC HORTON WR 6-4 180 CLARENDON HALL
- ANTHONY ROSE SAF 6-4 180 MIAMI
- RYAN BRUBAKER OT 6-6 280 STEVENS, PA
- LANDON SAMSON WR 6-1 185 SOUTHLAKE, TX
- NICK EMMANWORI LB 6-4 195 IRMO
- EMORY FLOYD SAF 6-1 165 POWDER SPRINGS, GA
- FELIX HIXON DT 6-4 280 JACKSON, GA
- KEENAN NELSON CB 6-2 180 PHILADELPHIA