Phil Kornblut

Coveted D-lineman knows this: ‘South Carolina will be in my top list’

Meet USC football’s freshman class

The University of South Carolina's highly acclaimed recruiting class includes quarterback Ryan Hilinski and defensive lineman Zacch Pickens.
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The University of South Carolina's highly acclaimed recruiting class includes quarterback Ryan Hilinski and defensive lineman Zacch Pickens.

Defensive end Desmond Evans of Sanford, North Carolina, is another prime target for South Carolina out of the Tarheel State, and the Gamecocks are in a good spot with him at this point.

He visited for a couple of games last season and was back for a spring practice in March. He won’t get back to USC until the season, but he does plan to take a couple of visits to other contenders during this week-long quiet period during which prospects can visit schools.

Evans (6-6, 240) was set to visit Virginia Tech for a barbecue Friday, and he plans to get to Tennessee before the dead period starts the first of August. Those two, along with USC and North Carolina, are four recruiting him hard. He plans to name a top five around the Aug. 23 date of his season-opening game. He said the Gamecocks definitely will be in that group.

“It’s going pretty good,” Evans said. “I can say South Carolina will be in my top list. Me and South Carolina have a relationship that’s pretty good right now. I was supposed to go up there for a camp but I didn’t go because I had different plans. Everything else is great. They text me everyday and I text them back, stuff like that.”

Evans does not have a timeline for a decision, and he plans to take his five official visits before deciding. He said USC will get one of those. As for the deciding factors for the winning school, Evans has a couple of things in mind.

“Will they develop me into a grown man who will make the right decisions in life?” he said. “And will they develop me to play in the NFL?”

Some of his other offers are Clemson, Michigan, West Virginia, Duke, Florida, Penn State, Alabama, Nebraska, Ohio State, NC State, Texas A&M, Kentucky and Mississippi State.

According to stats compiled by MaxPreps, the last two seasons Evans has totaled 114 tackles with 25 tackles for loss, 26.5 sacks and 17 hurries.

Notes

TE Jesse Sanders of South Aiken visited Georgia State on Thursday and said the Panthers are one of his top schools. He has a preferred walk-on offer from USC and hasn’t heard much from the Gamecocks of late, but he plans to check in soon with recruiter Bobby Bentley. Sanders hopes to generate more interest early in the season; otherwise he’s looking at the start of region play for making a decision with the offers from Georgia State and Akron and the PWO offer from USC his three top options.

Class 2021 QB Colten Gauthier of Dacula, Georgia, visited Clemson on Thursday. The Tigers missed on a couple of other quarterbacks they offered in the ’21 class and recently turned up their interest in Gauthier, who visited USC in May and camped with the Gamecocks in June.

USC WR target Deajuan McDougle of Deerfield Beach, Florida, plans to visit Maryland this weekend. He took an official visit to USC in late June. He’s also had Ohio State, Oregon and Purdue on his short list. He plans a decision announcement Tuesday.

Hammond QB Jackson Muschamp was offered by Boston College.

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