Josh Kendall

Star South Carolina freshman ‘banged up’ but expectations for his future are high

Travaris Robinson has high expectations for Zacch Pickens, but right now South Carolina’s star defensive signee is “limited” in spring practice.

“He’s just banged up a little bit,” Robinson, the Gamecocks’ defensive coordinator, said Wednesday after the team’s first spring practice. “He’ll be good.”

Robinson did not specify what was bothering Pickens but said he expected him to be full speed by the end of spring practice on April 6. Pickens was dressed out for his first Gamecocks practice, but the practice was closed before most team drills began.

“Right now he’s a little limited but he’ll be fine,” Robinson said.

Pickens, a 6-foot-4, 290-pound defensive lineman, was the first five-star signee of the Will Muschamp era and is expected to play right away for the Gamecocks. Down the line, he could be very good, Robinson said.

“You ever seen that guy that play for the Eagles? No. 91, Fletcher Cox,” Robinson said. “That would probably be my ideal scenario, Aaron Donald and those kind of guys. He has that ability to do that one day. Obviously he’s a freshman. He’s a long way from doing that right now. He’s learning the plays right now. He doesn’t even know what we’re doing right now. He’s just running around like a chicken with his head cut off.

“I want him to be really good and the best in our conference.”

Josh Kendall has covered SEC football for almost 20 years. He has covered the Gamecocks since the 2010 season. Have a question? Shoot him an email or find him on Twitter, and he’ll be happy to respond.