Phil Kornblut

January 15, 2014

JUCO defensive end Caldwell commits to Gamecocks

DE Darrius Caldwell gets his offer from USC.

Defensive end Darrius Caldwell of Pearl River Junior College in Mississippi had been waiting for weeks on a call from USC with an official offer because he planned to commit if one came.

USC had to look over his transcripts first and finally Caldwell got that call.

On Jan. 7, Gamecock defensive line coach Deke Adams contacted Caldwell with the news his transcript was good enough for enrolling at USC, and Caldwell followed through on his pledge.

"I had told coach Adams if he made me the official offer I would commit on the spot. When I got back to school, he called and asked me if that still stands and I said yes," Caldwell said. "I was probably more excited than he was."

USC recruited Caldwell (6-6, 240) out of high school in Atlanta but he signed with Illinois. He spent two seasons there but left after the coaching change played this season at Pearl River. He will have two years to play two.

"They need a guy that's ready to play and I would add a little more versatility to their defense in my playing style," Caldwell said. "I'm excited about the opportunity to attend the university and play SEC football."

Caldwell said he's on track to graduate in May.

"I only need a few more credits to get out and I just have to take a few more classes here at the JC." He has set an official visit to USC for January 24th and won't take any other visits.

Caldwell becomes the 18th commitment for USC's 2014 class.

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