USC has been recruiting at GTA Prep in Mississauga, ONT going back to last year. At first, the Gamecocks had their eyes on 6-10 Kaosi Ezeagu, but he committed to UTEP last week. At the same time, they were eyeballing 6-6 AJ Lawson who was in the 2019 class. But Lawson has moved up to 2018 and the Gamecocks have upped their interest.
“AJ really got their eye as well and they said they would like to get involved with AJ at some point if he was really interested in South Carolina,” said GTA coach David Cooper. “When we looked to reclassify, they jumped all over it. They would love to have a player like him in the ’18 or ’19 class.”
Lawson visited the USC campus back in December when his team stopped on the way to a tournament in Florida. He will return June 1st for an official visit. And though Lawson lives in Brampton, ONT, he has ties to Columbia. It’s his dad’s hometown and still has family in the city.
“Dad grew up a Gamecock fan,’ Cooper said.
Lawson also will set official visits with SMU and Creighton. He’s also getting attention from Oregon and Tulane.
Cooper said Lawson averaged around 21 points per game last season
“He’s a special player,” Cooper said. “His size and his skill set, his ability to push the ball, control the basketball at his size, see the floor, he has a really good feel. He gets his teammates involved. On the other end, he defends really well. Really good off the ball and works really hard. He can guard multiple positions.”
Lawson is one of two prospects Frank Martin and his staff are known to still be pursuing for the 2018 class. The other is 6-9 DJ Burns of York Prep who appears to be focused on the Gamecocks and Tennessee at this point.