Earlier this week Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher was in Saluda and met with DL Dexter Wideman and his grandmother and left a very positive impression on the pair. Wideman has been committed to the Seminoles but has also been giving USC strong consideration. Today it was USC’s turn to make their final big play and the Gamecocks brought in their big guns. Steve Spurrier, GA Mangus, Deke Adams and Steve Spurrier Jr. met with Wideman, his grandmother and other family members for about an hour at the school. “It was a great visit,” a source with knowledge of the sit down told us this afternoon. “It was a full court press, this is what we can do for you, and there’s a chance to play fairly early. And definitely the celebrity affect was in play. He’s still sticking to the commitment to Florida State but there’s possibly a chink in the armor. It was definitely a great visit. That same huge smile he had when he talked to coach Fisher, he had an ever bigger smile today.” Wideman will take his official visit to Florida State January 31st and he will announce on Signing Day at his school at around 2:45 PM.
RB Derrell Scott of Havelock, NC had in home visits this week from USC coach Steve Spurrier and assistants as well as Tennessee coach Butch Jones and assistants. Scott had also considered Florida but his decision has come down to the Gamecocks and the Vols. A source with knowledge of his recruiting said Friday Scott likely will announce for Tennessee on Monday afternoon at his school. Scott publicly identified the Gamecocks and the Vols as his favorites earlier this month. The Vols have sold Scott on the idea of immediate playing time for them, something the Gamecocks can’t guarantee because of their depth at running back for the 2014 season.
USC and Clemson hosted most of their committed players and targets last weekend, and with only a few players left on their boards, there will be few official visits for the two the next two weekends. But Clemson will host one of its remaining major targets in DE Andrew Williams. The Tigers are to have six official visits this weekend and USC two. Of course, visiting plans are fluid and can change with prospects being added or deleted from the lists.
DE Andrew Williams of McDonough, GA was scheduled to visit Clemson January 31st but he tweeted Thursday night that he’s coming in this weekend. Williams is down to Clemson and Auburn. He visited Auburn last weekend. Also scheduled to visit Clemson this weekend are committed LB Jalen Williams of Blythewood and walk-on candidate WR Hunter Renfrow of Socastee. Williams has a grayshirt offer from the Tigers but is hopeful of still getting in with the 2014 class. Renfrow has an offer from Appalachian State and visited there last weekend. The Tigers also will have commitments CJ Fuller, JD Davis and Judah Davis in for official visits this weekend.
A pair of committed defensive ends will make their official visit to USC this weekend. Darrius Caldwell of Pearl River JC, MS committed to the Gamecocks earlier this month and that pledge was firmed up earlier this week during a visit from recruiter Deke Adams. And Jhaustin Thomas signed with the Gamecocks two years ago and did not qualify. He’s at Trinity Valley JC in Texas and plans to resign next month. Both players have academic work to clear before they can get to USC this summer.
Other official visits of interest this weekend
DL Zeek Rodney of South Pointe to Wake Forest
DB Cory Seargant of Northwestern to Nebraska
DL Cory Thomas of McCalla, AL (Clemson target) to Mississippi State
DL Arthur Williams of Fayetteville, NC (USC target) to Florida State
WR Shaq Davidson of Gaffney (USC commitment) to Auburn
LB Bryson Allen-Williams of Ellenwood, GA (USC commitment) to Alabama
WR Isaiah Ford of Jacksonville (USC target) to Miami
DL Poona Ford of Hilton Head to Purdue
Former Shrine Bowler WR Casey Gladney (6-2 185) of Copiah-Lincoln JC, MS did not get strong interest from USC during his senior season at Columbia High, but now the Gamecocks are taking a closer look and may come thru with an offer in the near future. Gladney had a sensational senior season with the Caps in 2011 catching 70 passes for 1300 yards and 19 touchdowns. And he averaged 36 yards per punt return. He had offers from Alabama, Texas Tech, Tennessee, Cincinnati and Kentucky. Gladney committed to Alabama in June of 2011 but eventually signed with Texas Tech and Tommy Tuberville. He did not qualify and that led him to junior college where this season he caught 60 passes with 8 going for touchdowns. He averaged 108 receiving yards per game. Gladney later switched his pledge to Cincinnati when Tuberville went there. The Bearcats remain his favorite but he will take an official visit to Cal January 31st. He also talked with USC recruiter GA Mangus earlier this week and he’s expecting Mangus to come down for a visit. “I’m just waiting on him to contact me and waiting on that offer,” Gladney said. “He said they are looking at my tape. He said with a junior college player they’ve got to get everything cleared and he said he’d get back to me.” And Gladney is hoping for that offer. “I’m very interested in possibly coming back to Columbia. Cincinnati is still my favorite. I’m just waiting to see how everything else goes. But an offer would put USC right up there with Cincinnati.” Gladney said he’s on track to graduate in May and he has three years to play two.
USC quarterbacks coach GA Mangus met Friday with South Aiken QB Bo Baldwin. USC has offered Baldwin a grayshirt opportunity for this year in which he would walk on in the fall and then get a scholarship in 2015. Baldwin has not made a decision about his future. Elon has recently started to show interest and could become a factor.
WR Shaedon Meadors of Byrnes committed today to Appalachian State.
Clemson visited Friday with junior LB Roquan Smith of Montezuma, GA.
Recruiting has picked up recently for junior TE Jackson Harris of Columbia, TN. He already holds an offer from Clemson and continues to receive interest from several schools. “It’s been kind of crazy lately,” Harris said. “Purdue and Northwestern have offered. I think Florida, Ohio State, Syracuse and Pitt could offer any day now.” Harris is showing a great deal of interest in the Tigers and has plans to visit soon. “I keep in contact with coach (Robbie) Caldwell,” he said. “We’re supposed to talk tonight or tomorrow. They just want to get me down there for a visit…just not sure if it’ll be for a junior day or a spring practice.” His offer sheet has grown to 13 with Tennessee, Virginia and Arkansas showing interest as well. Harris would like to wait before narrowing his list and planning more visits. “I would like to get it down to eight but I don’t want to set a timetable yet,” he said. “I want to give myself some time to see who is really interested in me and who I am really interested in.” Some of his other offers include Florida State, Georgia Tech, Mississippi State and Vanderbilt. He does not have any favorites.
Junior DB Rion Davis of AC Flora has scheduled two junior day visits for next month. NC State is his sole offer. He will be in Raleigh February 2nd for their junior day. The Wolfpack is the only school that has been able to visit Davis since the end of the dead period. “They just came by to see how I was doing,” Davis said. “Clemson and USC came by on the same day but I was busy doing something for a teacher so I didn’t get to talk to them.” His other junior day will be to Georgia Tech February 22nd. His only other visit to Tech was for a basketball camp. “Paul Johnson visited me when I was a sophomore,” he said. “I liked him. He told me he had watched my film and wanted to get me down for a game. I never got a chance to go though.” Davis is showing interest in the Yellow Jackets but named Clemson, USC, NC State, Georgia, Florida State and Tennessee as his top schools. He plans attend camps at FSU and North Carolina this summer as well as a Rivals camp. Davis did not name a leader.
North Carolina and Wake Forest had coaches in attendance Tuesday to watch junior WR JJ Arcega-Whiteside of Dorman play basketball. The two-sport star is getting most of attention in football with early offers from Elon and Appalachian State. Due to NCAA regulations, Arcega-Whiteside was unable to speak with the coaches that came to see him. “They did let me know on social media that they were impressed with my athleticism,” he said. “I plan on going to junior days at both schools.” Arcega-Whiteside is also planning to attend junior days at USC and Clemson, though he is unsure of the scheduling issues that might occur. “It will really depend on the basketball team,” he said. “If we go on to win State, it might not work out.” USC assistant Shawn Elliott is the only other coach to stop by the school to visit with Arcega-Whiteside. “He came by to see me and one other player but I couldn’t get out of class to see him,” he said. This summer he plans to attend several camps, one in particular. “Clemson invited me to their camp and said if I perform really well, they could offer me,” Arcega-Whiteside said. “I’ll definitely go there and some other ACC and SEC schools around this area.” Arcega-Whiteside does not have any favorites.