USC suffered a recruiting setback Friday night when WR Jonathan Paylor announced for NC State. Saturday afternoon, however, brought the Gamecocks better news with QB Landon Duckworth (6-3 187) of Jackson, AL becoming their first commitment for the 2026 class.
Duckworth chose USC over other offers from TCU, Vanderbilt, Florida, Arkansas, Texas A&M, Mississippi State and Nebraska.
Duckworth visited USC for the spring game in mid-April and was back for the cookout for invited prospects one week ago. Jody Wright is his area recruiter and offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains was also heavily involved. Duckworth said last week a reason he chose the Gamecocks was the relationship he had with the coaches.
“Just the staff to me,” Duckworth said. “The school is already good, a good football program. This is the staff for me.”
Last season Duckworth passed for 1985 yards and 20 touchdowns completing 110 of 183 passes (60%) He also rushed for 355 yards and eight touchdowns.
Duckworth has no plans to cut his high school career short to get to college early. He will complete his full career at Jackson before moving on to Columbia.