South Carolina’s Will Muschamp stayed hot on the recruiting trail Tuesday landing a commitment from defensive lineman Dantrell Barkley (6-foot-3, 285 pounds) from Independence Community College in Kansas and Kannapolis, N.C. He’s the fourth commitment for Muschamp in June and the 10th overall for the 2018 class.
Barkley also considered N.C. State, Colorado and Colorado State. He visited USC earlier in the month and from that determined his future would be best served with Muschamp and defensive line coach Lance Thompson.
“The relationship with the coaches,” Barkley explained as a primary reason for picking USC. “Most of the coaches on the staff I’ve talked to for quite some time, especially Coach (Bobby) Bentley and Coach Thompson. It’s the SEC, of course, and I can compete with the best players in the country. And it’s close to home and I can come have my folks come see me play.”
Barkley redshirted last season at Independence, so his major college potential is based on what coaches saw in the spring and in his senior season at A.L. Brown High School. The Gamecocks project to lose three starters off their defensive line in 2017, so Barkley sees a chance for an early spot in the rotation.
“I see myself coming in and making an immediate impact and compete at the three-technique position,” he said. “I’ll be able to move around and play some end, maybe, but mostly at the three technique. Coach Thompson likes the way I get after it, he likes my motor. He said I’m a little raw right now but he can polish me up.”
Barkley is USC’s first interior defensive lineman commitment for the class. He is scheduled to visit NC State this Saturday but he’s not sure he’ll follow thru with that. He plans to graduate in December and will have three years to play three with the Gamecocks.