South Carolina Football: Gamecocks Get Stud 4-Star CB In D.J. Smith

Gamecocks Receive Verbal From Top CB Prospect

1/14/14 in NCAAF   |   Tyler_Waddell   |   426 respect

Steve Spurrier and the South Carolina Gamecocks added much-needed depth to the secondary when Blog Photo - South Carolina Football: Gamecocks Get Stud 4-Star CB In D.J. Smith four-star defensive back D.J. Smith of Walton High School in Marietta (Ga.) gave his verbal commitment Monday night.

Smith, the No. 12 corner prospect according to the 247Sports Composite Rating (No. 129 overall recruit), said secondary coach Grady Brown was one of the biggest influences during his recruiting process.

"First what made me commit was I have such a great relationship with coach Grady Brown," Smith told 247Sports. "He's been keeping it real with me since my recruitment began. Also they have a system which allows me to play aggressive and make plays, and most importantly I'm able to try to start getting playing time my freshman year."

This is a huge grab for South Carolina in more than one way. Corners Victor Hampton and Jimmy Legree are gone, leaving questions at that position, while depth at both free and strong safety are lacking—and Smith can play either.

Smith has extraordinary ball skills and said it best when he said the Gamecocks’ defensive scheme will allow him to play aggressively. Not only does he excel at man coverage due to his outstanding closing speed, but his athleticism and ability to shift his way past blockers makes him an asset in run defense as well.

His pledge also boosts Spurrier’s 2014 recruiting class four spots in the team rankings from 25 to 21, but behind eight (!!!) other SEC rivals—which is a testament to the level of competition between the conference members and the importance of the month of January to its coaches.

Smith still holds offers from various powerhouse programs, including Clemson, Florida, Georgia, Louisville, Miami (Fla.), Michigan State, Nebraska, Ohio State and Tennessee. He’s still expected to make official visits with the Volunteers and Hurricanes.

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