Saturday night former UAB DE Drew Tuazama (6-5 275) announced on X he is transferring to USC as a graduate student. Tuazama should find some snaps at defensive end this season, a position that was weakened by two off-season transfers and the dismissal of freshman signee Monteque Rhames.
Tuazama has already arrived in Columbia and joined the team. He was on hand for the Saturday night scrimmage but could not participate due to the acclimation period.
Tuazama is a native of Raleigh. He began his career at Syracuse and after two seasons transferred to East Mississippi JC before landing at UAB last season. He had 33 tackles with six tackles for loss and five sacks last season.
Tuazama also picked up offers from Indiana, Colorado and Mississippi State\ after entering the NCAA Transfer Portal.
“I wanted to be closer to home and play SEC football,” Tuazama said Saturday night. “Even though I’m from North Carolina I always pulled for SC (South Carolina) in the SEC.”
Tuazama played in all 13 games for the Blazers last season and was a major part of a defense that led Conference USA in scoring defense, passing defense and defensive efficiency.
“My passion for the game is contagious,” Tuazama said. “I like to fly around and make plays and motivate players around me.”:
Tuazama gives the Gamecocks 34 recruited newcomers for the 2023 season with 13 of them coming as transfers from another program.
Tuazama also was a standout basketball player in high school before concentrating on football.