USC recruiter Pete Lembo contacted 2023 LB Phil Picciotti September 1st, the first day he could make contact with prospects in that class. Lembo was doing his due diligence on a player in his recruiting territory, and the result of that was an offer to Picciotti on Wednesday. The Gamecocks are the first team from the Deep South to reach out to Picciotti with an offer, and that alone will have Lembo in the mix for him moving forward.
“We’re texting and I’ve called him a couple of times, getting to know him a little bit,” Picciotti said. “He’s telling me to research a little bit about the University of South Carolina. I’d definitely like to get down there for a game to visit possibly.”
Picciotti had 68 tackles and 7 sacks in 8 games last season. He covers a lot of ground from his linebacker spot, and that’s what impressed Lembo.
“They like how I’m a downhill linebacker,” Picciotti said. “I can move my hips, move laterally left to right, sideline-to-sideline. I sent them a couple of clips of me dropping into coverage. They wanted to see that before offering me.”
Picciotti has not yet talked with head coach Shane Beamer, but he said Lembo is working to get the two of them together on a call. Picciotti would like to learn more about Beamer and his program. For now, he’s just happy an SEC team has reached out to him.
“It’s very exciting considering it’s my first SEC offer and very big,” he said. “It’s probably going to bring a lot of other colleges towards me. I’d like to get to know a lot of the coaches at South Carolina and research a little bit about them.”
Picciotti also has offers from Penn State, Pitt, Maryland, Northwestern, Purdue, Rutgers, Virginia and West Virginia. He attended his first college game last weekend when he went to Penn State for the Auburn game.
Picciotti is rated a three-star by 247Sports and ranked the #37 linebacker nationally in his class, and the #11 prospect in Pennsylvania.