Defensive lineman Jeffery Johnson (6-foot-2, 325 pounds) of Brookhaven, Miss., carries a lot of weight on the defensive line and in recruiting. South Carolina on Wednesday became the latest Power Five program to pony up an offer. He also has offers from Kentucky, LSU, Alabama, Florida, Louisville, Memphis and others.
“I’m excited,” Johnson said of the Gamecock offer. “I love a lot of things they do there. I think it’s a great place. I talked to Coach Thompson and he was just telling me how he likes the way I play the game. He was really excited about my film.”
The Gamecock interest is all brand new to Johnson and he hasn’t had enough time to investigate the program thoroughly to know where USC would fall in his big picture.
“I have a lot of big time offers and I just need to get on campus and really get to know what the program is about and things that stand out from others,” he said. “I think this summer would bring a good time (for a visit). I’ll have to talk to my mom about everything.”
Johnson has visited Ole Miss, LSU, Florida State and Louisiana-Lafayette. He will go to either Alabama or LSU for a spring game.
▪ Defesnive end Gaelin Elmore, a grad student transfer from Minnesota, set his next visit for Houston this weekend. He has been to South Carolina and Arizona and enjoyed both. It’s possible he’ll be ready to make a decision after this third visit.
“This will probably be the biggest (indicator) because it’s the third visit. Still pretty neck and neck,” Elmore said.
He has been in touch with USC’s Will Muschamp and Lance Thompson since his visit with them earlier this week.
▪ Gamecocks running back target Lavonte Valentine, from Melbourne, Fla., was offered by Notre Dame.
▪ South Carolina quarterback target Tyler Shough was offered by Washington State.
▪ Kaiir Elam, a 2019 defensive back from North Palm Beach, Fla., was offered by USC Wednesday.
▪ USC offered Rome, Ga., defensive end Jamarcus Chatman on Wednesday.
▪ Ben Lippen linebacker Kyle Wright was offered by Georgia State.
▪ Clemson reportedly will get visits from a pair of graduate student transfer, 6-foot-9 forward Jack Whitman of William and Mary and 6-foot-9 forward Mark Donnal of Michigan. Whitman averaged 10 points and five rebounds per game this season. He also plans to visit George Washington. Donnal averaged four points per game in 36 games this season. He is visiting Creighton this weekend and is also going to visit Vanderbilt.
▪ Evan Cole, a 6-foot-8 former UNCW recruit, has Clemson on his new short list according to PackPride. He’s also looking at N.C. State, Georgia Tech, Minnesota, Georgia Tech and Wofford. He will visit NC State this weekend.
▪ Buford, Ga., 2019 offensive lineman Riley Simonds (6-foot-4, 290 pounds) visited Clemson last weekend.
“They can’t wait to see me in spring. He (Robbie Caldwell) likes my size and ability to move.” Simonds said.
Simonds has an offer from Virginia Tech.
▪ Joshua Shepphard, a 2020 athlete from Stone Mountain, Ga., visited Clemson Wednesday.