Phil Kornblut

South Carolina working to flip Pac-12 commit from South Florida

‘Come be the first, not the next,’ Muschamp tells recruits

What Will Muschamp tells the recruits on why they should come play football for South Carolina.
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What Will Muschamp tells the recruits on why they should come play football for South Carolina.

Catholic High School in Tampa opened its season Friday night and safety DJ Taylor (5-foot-10, 190 pounds) had a big night. He picked off three passes, broke up another and made a couple of tackles. Among those to take notice of the efforts of the Arizona State commitment was USC defensive coordinator/secondary coach Travaris Robinson. He was so impressed he contacted Taylor’s coach, and Taylor, and informed him he had an offer from the Gamecocks.

“I’ve been visiting there a lot with my 7-on-7 team,” Taylor said of his previous contact from Robinson. “The communication was there and then when I started getting ready for my commitment, it went away. All of a sudden, I guess they saw my performance in my game on Friday with three interceptions, a pass break up and a couple of tackles. Coach T-Rob is real close friends with my head coach, and they communicated and he let me know and coach T-Rob let me know. They were like, it pays to be patient. He stayed interested and he let me know it had been awhile but everything is good now and they were giving me a scholarship.”

Also working in Taylor’s behalf, Gamecock freshman cornerback Johnny Dixon, who is a close friend of his from Tampa.

“He asked about me, and they said I’m a good ballplayer and I match up to their starters size-wise,” Taylor said.

Taylor took an official visit to Arizona State in May and committed in June. That commitment is still in place, he said, but he has not shut down his recruiting.

“I’m definitely open a lot more,” he said. “I went to South Carolina when there wasn’t a game and I didn’t get any feedback on the game atmosphere, so I’m definitely going to get a chance to do that and see how that is. Anything can change. Keeping my options open still and seeing who is still trying to build a connection with me.”

Taylor has set an official visit to Louisville for his birthday weekend of Oct. 4. He also plans to set a visit with USC. Some of his other offers are Michigan State, Pitt, Syracuse, Duke, Illinois, UCF, USF, Iowa State, Kansas State, West Virginia and Wake Forest.

He plays corner for his high school but he said the Gamecocks are recruiting him for safety. USC has three cornerbacks committed for the 2020 class but no safeties.

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