Wyatt Campbell is your typical country boy.
The Lugoff-Elgin senior offensive lineman loves to hunt, fish and enjoy the quiet and peaceon his parents’ 300-acre farm in Elgin. Campbell enjoys listening to old country music such as George Strait, Alabama and Hank Williams Jr.
But if you strap shoulder pads and a helmet on Campbell, that laid-back persona disappears.
“He has the right disposition to be an offensive lineman. He is a nasty individual on the field with a goofy streak. It’s the perfect mix,” Lugoff-Elgin coach Matt Campbell said. “He is just a good ol’ boy.”
Wyatt Campbell, 6-foot-7, 285 pounds, says he embraces the nastiness that goes with playing offensive line. Both Wyatt and his brother Elliott, an offensive lineman at Wofford, were put on the line because they were bigger than the other kids.
“You don’t get to touch the ball and get to celebrate, but your team wouldn’t be anything without offensive and defensive lines. I take it I have the most important job on the field,” Wyatt Campbell said. “And I just got that mentality about me, that you aren’t going to bully me around. I’m going to hit you and you are going to know it. It is just the way I play. You’ve got to have someone do the dirty work and have that meanness about him. No more playing games.”
Wyatt Campbell learned at an early age about doing dirty work from working on the farm. Some of his jobs included fixing fences, cutting down trees, mowing grass on the 300-acre farm, lifting logs and his least favorite task – picking blueberries.
“You’ve got to do the dirty work. That is what farming is all about. If you do one thing wrong, it could mess things up around here,” Wyatt Campbell said. “Just like in football, if you take one wrong step then you are already beat.”
Wyatt Campbell’s work ethic along and physical talent helped him rise to a three-star recruit. 247Sports ranks him as the 14th-best prospect in South Carolina. In June, he committed to South Carolina and plans to enroll in January.
Wyatt Campbell grew up a Clemson fan and thought he would play out of state until late in the recruiting process. The Gamecocks were one of the last schools to offer and the thought of playing in the SEC was hard to pass up.
Wyatt Campbell sees a lot of similarities between what USC coach Will Muschamp is doing and what he has been a part of at Lugoff-Elgin. The Demons went from a one-win team in Matt Campbell’s first season, two years ago, to making the playoffs last year – something they hadn’t done since 2010.
“I’m happy with my decision and I think we are going to build South Carolina’s program and we are going to be near the top soon,” Wyatt Campbell said.
Wyatt Campbell credits his coach, a former Gamecock tight end who later played offensive line for seven seasons in the NFL, and L-E strength coach Mike Armstrong for helping him develop. Wyatt Campbell said he has learned a lot from his head coach about playing the position – from technique to footwork.
Matt Campbell has been pleased the Wyatt Campbell’s growth and said he has the potential to be big-time player for the Gamecocks. He likes his size and quickness, despite being almost 290 pounds. Wyatt Campbell ran 5.0 in the 40-yard dash this summer.
Only 16, Wyatt Campbell is still growing into his body.
“He has all the size and measurables and you won’t ever see him get tired,” the L-E coach said. “We have seen him mature since we got here and wanted him to come along.”
Wyatt Campbell, who has been bothered some by a sore shoulder, is looking to help the Demons build on their playoff appearance and ready to be at USC in January.
Wyatt Campbell, who rarely tweets, took to social media this week to defend USC commit and Fort Dorchester quarterback Dakereon Joyner, who was getting flak from Clemson fans and recruits (which included Xavier Thomas), when he said he wasn’t going to lose to the Tigers during his college career.
“We start talking to get the rivalry going,” Campbell said. “I will be ready whatever they think they have for me.”