Drew Barker is South Carolina's Top Priority at Quarterback in 2014

Barker is a break from the recent trend of primarily recruiting quarterbacks named Connor, but he does attend Conner High School in Kentucky, so hey that's something.

When it comes to recruiting quarterbacks, the modus operandi of Steve Spurrier and quarterbacks coach G.A. Mangus has been to identify "their guy" and pursue him until it becomes clear that he's going elsewhere. For example, in the 2013 cycle, the Gamecocks zeroed in on Christian Hackenberg until he gave his verbal commitment to Penn State. Following that, they offered Connor Mitch, who subsequently committed to South Carolina, thus wrapping up the Gamecocks' recruitment of quarterbacks for that cycle.

In the 2014 cycle, the coaching staff is focusing most of its attention, for the time being, on Hebron, KY quarterback Drew Barker. He is currently the only quarterback the Gamecocks have offered. 247 Sports ranks Barker as the third best dual threat quarterback in the class of 2014 and the 102nd best player overall. Check out his mid-season highlight video below:


(h/t The Big Spur)

A couple of things are clear from watching the video. Barker has experience running the zone read, which will certainly come in handy if he decides to be a Gamecock. He doesn't have the breakaway speed that Connor Shaw has, but he runs well and seems to be a very physical runner. (In the video you can see that he doesn't so much stiff arm defenders as shove their heads into the Earth's core.) Like Shaw, Barker seems like he is not at all shy about taking off downfield if his receivers are covered. Finally, I have zero knowledge what constitutes good footwork and throwing mechanics, but 'dem balls shore do look purty.

South Carolina is easily the most impressive program that has offered Barker at this point, but Ohio State could be tough to beat if they decide to pull the trigger on an offer.

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