Phil Kornblut

Key target on USC trip: ‘The visit was amazing, I’m not going to lie to you’

How South Carolina approaches recruiting offensive linemen

South Carolina Gamecocks football offensive line coach Eric Wolford explains the
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South Carolina Gamecocks football offensive line coach Eric Wolford explains the

Nokesville, Va., offensive lineman Jakai Moore remains a much coveted prospect by South Carolina, Clemson and others. He has taken one official visit thus far, to USC in April. This past Saturday he was back in Columbia with his mom for his first gameday visit with the Gamecocks. He was duly impressed.

“The visit was amazing, I’m not going to lie to you,” Moore said. “For my first game visit to South Carolina, it was a good one, I liked it. The coaches are chill. I can talk to them. They are basically like family.”

As for his real family, Moore said his mother “loves South Carolina.”

Moore watched the Gamecocks take down Tennessee and he also got the chance to talk with Will Muschamp who further drove home the message he has used in recruiting players the last three years.

“They need me and they can get me to the NFL the best way because playing in the SEC is a whole different level,” Moore said. “And they are only getting better. I definitely seen that out there. One thing I did take away was there were a lot of injuries on the line. If I don’t start off the jump, I’ll definitely have the chance to play early.”

Moore said the visit left the Gamecocks very high on his list though he’s not naming favorites. He has one more official visit set and that’s to Penn State on Dec. 9.

Clemson also remains in Moore’s ear and he will visit there unofficially for the USC game.

“I’ve been talking to Coach Caldwell all the time, just constantly contacting me and calling me on the phone, we keep in contact a lot,” Moore said. “They’re the top dogs.”

But Moore won’t necessarily be influenced by a program’s success. He’s not just looking for a place where he can win right away or a place that needs his help the most to become a winner.

“Honestly I just want to go to the place that fits me best,” he said. “Go to a school where I can come in, I can play early and also I can progress as a player.”

Moore said he will consider an official visit to Clemson before making his announcement Dec. 19. He said Florida also has been talking to him a lot giving a list of USC, Clemson, Penn State and the Gators as the schools strongest with him at this point.