South Carolina quarterback commit Luke Doty was presented with the ideal opportunity.
He was at The Opening, working out with some of the best high school football talent in the country. And who happened to be paired with him on a team but a pair of Gamecocks recruiting targets — explosive tight end Jaheim Bell and four-star running back Tank Bigsby.
“I actually talked to them a lot,” Doty said. “They were on my team for The Opening finals, the 7-on-7, stuff like that. I got to talk to them a lot and be around them. (Gamecocks running back commit) MarShawn (Lloyd) and I, we’re definitely shooting our shot, giving our recruiting spiels to them. Jaheim decommitted from Florida, so I definitely think a flip is possible there. I think we’re in good shape with Tank too.
“We get those two guys, I think we’ll be rolling.”
Bigsby is the No. 50 recruit in the country in the 247 Sports composite rankings, a 2,000-yard, 206-pound tailback out of Callaway, Georgia. He’s been a top target for much of this recruiting cycle and the Gamecocks staff had been hoping to pair him with Lloyd, the No. 35 player in the land.
Bell is the No. 377 player in the country, about 25 spots out of a four-star designation. The versatile 6-foot-2, 213 pounder projects to play the team’s smaller tight end spot.
USC has already added FCS transfer Nick Muse in the 2020 group. Bell posted 770 yards on 52 catches for Valdosta last season and played some direct-snap tailback.
The quarterback’s message to both was simple.
“Making sure they knew South Carolina was home,” Doty said.
Doty had already spent some time with Bigsby, as the pair took their official visits on the same weekend. Getting a chance to work with both, he gave his impressions on the talent of each player.
“Tank is just a freak athlete. He can run it. He can catch it. He can get after it.”
“Jaheim is just really explosive off the ball. He can run any route in the route tree. He’s got some pretty great hands. ... He’s a big body. He can get off the ball really well. ... Definitely think we’re going to utilize his game in different situations. He can do it all.”
South Carolina’s class currently has 14 members, plus a pair of transfers. That means nine or eight more spots depending on if USC can reel in Clemson transfer Tavien Feaster. If the Gamecocks were able to get Bigsby and Bell, they would likely be full at both spots for the 2020 cycle.