SAF Kaj Sanders (6-1 175) of famed Bergen Catholic in Oradell, NJ, who has been a key recruit for South Carolina in the 2024 class, has moved his commitment announcement up three weeks. Two days after his official visit with the Gamecocks, Sanders changed the date from July 30th to July 8th.
Sanders said Tuesday night he has not yet made his decision because he has three more official visits on the docket after visiting Wisconsin and then USC. His time in Columbia with his parents, however, did a lot to help the Gamecocks’ cause.
“I took away that South Carolina is a great school academically and athletic-wise,” Sanders said. “The coaches there are amazing. They are great people. They really do care for their players. It definitely puts them high on my list. I haven’t finished my official visits, but after the visit, they are definitely really high on my list. I have three more visits left, North Carolina, Rutgers and Penn State.”
Sanders, who also visited for a junior day in January, Sand has spent a lot of time talking with USC secondary coach Torrian Gray about how he would fit in with his secondary. What they’ve concluded is it’s a wait (weight) and see proposition.
“They don’t know what I’m going to play on defense. They are basing it on my body growth,” Sanders said. “They see me more as a middle safety, or maybe a corner type of guy. It just depends on my growth.”
One thing is certain. Sanders trusts Gray to make the right decision for his future.
“I love Coach Gray as a coach,” Sanders said. “Me and My parents love him because he’s a great coach and better person. The defense they run, I like because it’s meant for the safeties to make plays. The safeties, if they don’t communicate and make plays, the defense won’t be good.”
Sanders also got the chance on the visit to talk directly with head coach Shane Beamer.
“He’s telling me that he loves how I play, and he thinks I am an SEC player,” Sanders said. “I could actually be a great SEC type of player if I really just put my mind to it and try my hardest.”
Sanders will take his final three officials and compare those visits to his first two. His decision, he said, will come down to relationships.
“My decision is going to be based on how close I am to the coaches,” Sanders said. “I know I’m going to be with them way more than I’m going to be with my own family, so I have to be able to go to them when something happens. That’s really what I’m going to base my decision on, how close I am with the coaches.”
Sanders is considered one of the top safety prospects in the country after a season in which he had 65 tackles with three interceptions.