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The three star defensive tackle picks the Bulls over the Gamecocks. Where does that leave USC for the 2013 recruiting class?
A little more than a week ago, it appeared as though Immokalee, FL defensive tackle Deadrin Senat was on the brink of committing to South Carolina, but on Tuesday he announced his intention to sign with the South Florida Bulls.
The good news is that the crown jewel of the Gamecocks' defensive line class - Hochston, GA defensive tackle Kelsy Griffin - is already committed to South Carolina. The bad news is that Senat's commitment, paired with reports that Auburn is pulling away with Alabama LB Jonathan Walton, means that South Carolina has a much slimmer margin for error with the remaining targets if they want to finish with a strong class.
Keith Bryant, 4 stars 183rd overall, 21st defensive tackle*
Bryant's recruitment has had more twists and turns and To Be Continued... cliffhangers than a J.J. Abrams television series. Bryant originally committed to the Miami Hurricanes, then was thought to be favoring South Carolina after an his unofficial during the weekend of the Georgia game, then decommitted from Miami, and then flaked on his scheduled official visit to South Carolina on January 18th to visit Miami while now naming Florida State as the favorite.
The Gamecocks finally got him back on campus for an official visit last weekend, a trip that Bryant and his family have given rave reviews. Now, Bryant says that his decision is "practically made." Steve Spurrier will be in Florida on Thursday to visit Bryant. The big defensive tackle is expected to announce a final decision on National Signing Day.
Completely unscientific approximation of the probability that Bryant will sign with South Carolina: 50%
Yannick Ngakoue, 4 stars, 315th overall, 18th inside linebacker
For the most part, everything has been quiet with the Mr. Ngakoue since his official visit to South Carolina on January 18th. Yannick was scheduled to visit Miami last weekend but cancelled that visit after his OV to Columbia. G.A. Mangus made the trip to visit Ngakoue in D.C. on January 23rd. Maryland assistant Mike Locksley dropped in on Tuesday. It's expected to come down to those to schools on National Signing Day.
I feel cautiously optimistic about South Carolina's chances of landing Yannick for a pair of reasons:
1) Ngakoue and Gamecock commit Na'Ty Rodgers have bonded during the recruiting process and the pair made their official visit together, which may negate to a certain degree any advantage that Maryland might have by having Ngakoue's teammate, Derwin Gray, already committed to their 2013 class
2) Ngakoue's decision to cancel his official visit to Miami in the wake of his visit to South Carolina logically suggests that something happened on his official visit to Columbia to make him think that he had seen all that he needed to see and didn't need to visit anywhere else.
Completely unscientific approximation of the probability that Ngakoue will sign with South Carolina: 50%
Skai Moore, 3 stars, 385th overall, 28th outside linebacker
Last weekend Moore visited Rutgers, the school to which he was originally committed. Coming out of his January 18th official visit, Moore was naming the Gamecocks as a favorite, but things seem to be up in the air now between a number of schools, including South Carolina, Rutgers, Vanderbilt, Arkansas, and Tennessee. Moore is currently scheduled to OV to Arkansas this weekend, but he could potentially change those plans and visit the Volunteers.
Completely unscientific approximation of the probability that Moore will sign with South Carolina: 40%
James Hearns, 3 stars, 311th overall, 17th inside linebacker
Since mentioning the Gamecocks as a team of potential interest in the immediate aftermath of having his offer pulled by Florida, not much has happened on the James Hearns front. Keep in mind that academics were the impetus behind his departure from the Gators' recruiting class, so even if he did end up committing to South Carolina, there's a high probability that he would end up needing to be placed in a JUCO or prep school.
Hearns visited Kentucky last weekend and does not currently have plans to visit South Carolina.
Completely unscientific approximation of the probability that Hearns will sign with South Carolina: 20%
Tyrell Lyons, 3 stars, 467th overall, 39th outside linebacker
Though Lyons has been committed to Florida State since February of 2012, his coach at First Coast described his recruitment as "up in the air between the Gamecocks and Seminoles at this point" coming out of his official visit to Columbia last weekend. A final decision from Lyons is expected within the next couple of days.
Completely unscientific approximation of the probability that Lyons will sign with South Carolina: 40%
As alluded to above, most seem to think that Auburn's interest in trying Walton out as something of an h-back on the offensive side of the ball and his proximity to the school will lead to Walton ultimately signing with the Tigers.
Steve Spurrier visited Walton on Tuesday.
Completely unscientific approximation of the probability that Walton will sign with South Carolina: 25%
Keep 'Em Committed
Three star Lithonia, GA defensive and and current South Carolina commitment David Johnson visited Vanderbilt last weekend. For now he's saying that he's still a Gamecock, but he's also saying that he'll have a final decision in the next couple of days.
As of right now, Johnson is the only Gamecock commitment openly considering another school.
*All ratings and rankings are according to 247Sports Composite.