The state of South Carolina is home to three of the nation’s premier offensive linemen in the 2024 class. One, Kam Pringle of Woodland, has made his decision (USC). A second, Blake Franks of Greenville High, is torn between USC and Clemson. And the third, OT Josiah Thompson of Dillon, is not quite in the neighborhood of making a decision.
“I think he’s talked about doing it sometime this spring at the latest, before he gets into the summer,” Dillon coach Kelvin Roller said. “He could possibly could do it before then. I know at the latest he said it would be this spring, late spring or whatever, but like I said, that could always change. He might want to go ahead and get it over with. That’s totally up to him. I just told him he’s going to have to tell some people no. He’s a great kid, and he’s got a great head on his shoulders. He’s got a great family behind him also. He’s going to be successful.”
Thompson has named a top six of USC, Clemson, Georgia, Tennessee, Miami and Florida. A number of recruiting analysts have predicted USC as the eventual winner. Roller believes it’s a little too soon to make a call on this recruiting saga.
“I don’t know what his favorite is,” Roller said. “He really hasn’t said. I know some people have put out there that he’s leaning towards South Carolina and I don’t know where that’s come from because he’s never said that. It could be because he’s made more trips there, but he’s only an hour and twenty minutes away, so naturally, that might be the case because he’s been there more. I wouldn’t say that anyone is leading right now. I think both in-state schools, he likes an awful lot because they are closer to home and his family is pretty close.”
Thompson visited USC and Clemson for their junior days in January in successive weekends.
“I think he enjoyed both of them,” Roller said. “His family went up there with him. He’s been up to both places multiple times. I think he enjoyed it and both schools have really recruited him hard. So have some others around the country. I got a call from Alabama today. They’ve been on him pretty hard. They came down twice to visiting him during the open period. They are really own him as well. But those two in-state programs have done a great job recruiting him.”
Alabama, however, could become a bigger player now that Kevin Steele is back as the defensive coordinator. Steele is a Dillon native and has recruited the state of South Carolina throughout his coaching career. But, he’ll have to overcome the strong positions held by the Gamecocks and Tigers to have much of a chance.
“South Carolina has been pretty successful here recently getting a lot of these in-state, high caliber kids, doing a good job with those guys creating relationships with each other with the other high school kids,” Roller said. “Among the high school guys that’s committed and signed this past class, I think they’ve all done a good job of recruiting him. Clemson, obviously they’ve done a good job. Coach (Thomas) Austin has recruited him very well.”
USC contacted Roller Thursday about getting Thompson in for a visit during their spring practices which are expected to begin March 14th. Thompson, Roller said, will definitely get back to Columbia and Clemson to watch a spring workout. Clemson begins drills on March 6th. He said Thompson also plans to visit Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama this spring.