Safety DJ Taylor of Tampa is one of South Carolina’s few remaining targets for the 2020 class. Taylor currently is committed to Arizona State but is far from shutting down his recruiting. USC, Louisville and Penn State are others actively pursuing him. Gamecock coaches and and his good friend, USC freshman corner John Dixon, have been in his ear a lot.
“Still keeping in contact with South Carolina, with coach Muschamp, he texts me daily,” Taylor said. “He’s sending me some motivational quotes. And coach T-Rob texts me once a week. And John Dixon is making sure I’m always talking to the coaches, keeping the connection so I can set up a visit and get the gameday feel of the school. They just want to let know that they really want me and can really use me for the safety spot.”
Taylor said he watched the Gamecocks season opening loss to North Carolina on television. As ugly as that loss was, and the fan fallout from it, Taylor said his interest in the Gamecocks has not changed.
“It didn’t affect my thinking at all,” Taylor said. “Every team has losses. It all really depends on how you bounce back from it. With the freshman quarterback, now you’ve got to step up big.”
Taylor wanted to take his official visit to USC his birthday weekend of October 4th but the Gamecocks are off that weekend, so they are talking about a date later in the season. And at this point of his recruiting, his interest level remains high.
“The feeling is good,” he said. “I’ve been there a handful of times, so I know how it is up there. I’ve never had one of the actual gameday experience but I was one of the first recruits to make it up there to see the new facility. I’m keeping the connection with coach T-Rob and I’ve been keeping the connection with coach Muschamp after the offer.”
Taylor took his official visit to Arizona State in May and committed soon after. He said several members of his high school staff have connections with Sun Devil coach Herm Edwards. He has scheduled an official visit to Louisville on Oct 4. He has been unofficially to South Florida, Louisville and Cincinnati among others.
Some of his other offers are Michigan State, Wake Forest, West Virginia, Rutgers, Kansas State, Iowa State, USF, UCF, Duke, Illinois, Syracuse and Pitt.
▪ Sumter 2021 defensive end Justus Boone was offered by Charlotte. He also has a USC offer.
▪ The Gamecocks offered 2021 linebacker Damon Owens of Brentwood, Tennessee.
▪ Ridge View 6-foot-8 Ja’Von Benson took an official visit to the College of Charleston last weekend. He is scheduled for an official visit to South Carolina this coming weekend. Benson said he is not going to comment publicly about his recruiting until he’s ready to make his decision. Some of his other offers are Ohio, Indiana State, UNC-Wilmington, Winthrop, Murray State, Presbyterian, Upstate, SC State and East Tennessee State.