USC head coach Shane Beamer and defensive ends coach Sterling Lucas have worked their way into a highly competitive position with DE Dylan Stewart (6-5 238) of Washington, DC. He was in for the spring game last year and then returned for a camp in June. He was back for the junior day in January, and he plans to be on hand Saturday for the spring game.
“They’ve done a pretty good job of building a relationship with him on a personal level, as well as showing what the school and the program are all about,” Friendship Collegiate head coach Mike Hunter said. “The relationship building and where he fits in their program, what position they’ll have him playing, chance to play early, those are some of the factors for him. He thinks they are really good people. He’s built a great relationship with both. He really likes them. He likes how they could develop him into a pretty good player.”
Stewart is already considered a “pretty good player.” Actually, more than that. At least one of the national recruiting services pegs him as the #1 prospect in the 2024 class. The Gamecocks once signed the #1 player in a class, a defensive end named Jadeveon Clowney.
“His size and athletic ability are very rare in combination with what he has,” Hunter said. “You don’t see many guys at his size with that athletic ability. That makes him a rare athlete. I never saw Clowney up close and personal. Just watched him on TV. Dylan is definitely a kid that can be in that same mold of a Jadaveon Clowney.”
The Gamecocks signed for the 2023 class another rare specimen of an athlete from the DC area in TE/DE Nyck Harbor. Hunter knows Harbor from playing against him the last few seasons.
“Both of them are freakish athletes, especially for their size,” Hunter said. “Obviously, Nyck is a world class track athlete, while I think Dylan possesses more of the football athleticism for the defensive end position than Nyck does.”
Stewart has been making the rounds with stops at Alabama, Michigan, Ohio State, Georgia and Penn State thus far this spring. After the USC stop, he is scheduled to see Colorado, Oregon and Tennessee. He has scheduled official visits to Georgia June 2nd, Ohio State June 16th and the Gamecocks June 23rd.
“He wants to go on all five of his official visits,” Hunter said. “Once he’s done with that, he’s going to meet with his family. They’ll tell me what they are leaning toward on where they want to go, and he’ll make his decision either sometime during the season or on signing day.”
College recruiters can go back on the road again starting Friday. Hunter said he doesn’t have a definite date yet from the USC staff on when they will be back to see Stewart, but he said they’ve told him it will be soon.