RB Peyton Lewis (6-1 190) of Salem, VA comes to the state of South Carolina all the time. He has family in the state and visits regularly. Now, he has another reason to come south. USC running backs coach Montario Hardesty likes him a lot and is recruiting him hard. Lewis will visit March 17th and again with an official visit in May or April.
“Back when I first started talking to Coach Hardesty before the offer, me and him just kind of clicked instantly because we have a lot of similarities,” Lewis said. “He visited me at my high school, and that’s when he enacted an offer, and I was just excited because I have family down there and I’ve always been to South Carolina. That’s just some place that I can see myself conveniently going back and forth from.”
Lewis also is a star on the track. Last summer he won the Class 4 100 meters championship in 10.62, and he finished second in the 200 meters. Lewis knows Hardesty sees his track speed and knows that can be a useful weapon.
“He’s made it clear that he really likes my speed and the way that I can accelerate and change gears, and just my movement overall in the game,” Lewis said. “He says that I would fit perfectly with their explosive offense, and he just really likes the way that I run the ball. I see that they incorporate using the running back in the backfield, and route running is also a specialty of mine. They definitely have different ways of utilizing my speed on the field.”
Lewis visited Tennessee last Saturday for a junior day. He will go to Virginia March 14th, USC on the 17th, Virginia Tech on the 21st, Nebraska on the 24th, Ohio State on the 31st and North Carolina April 15th. West Virginia was supplanted by the Ohio State visit, so he might reset a date with the Mountaineers. Lewis said these visits will be more than just sightseeing ventures for him.
“I just really want to get to know the coaches and really get to know how they are as a person,” he said. “It could be a great school with a great facility and everything, but that means nothing if the football program has bad people running it. I really just plan on building relationships with coaches.”
“Me and Coach Hardesty have a very strong relationship,” Lewis continued “Me and him have a lot of similarities together, a lot of stuff that we have in common. From the jump, me and him just clicked instantly.”
That relationship with Hardesty has put the Gamecocks in a good recruiting spot with Lewis.
“South Carolina stands out a lot for me,” Lewis said. “Definitely as school that is in high consideration. Definitely a top three for me along with Tennessee and Penn State.”
Lewis plans to name a top five in the latter part of April and then set his official visits for May and June. He is looking at late July for a commitment announcement.
Last season Lewis rushed for 1560 yards and 17 touchdowns.