After a few days of intimations that he had chosen the Gamecocks over the Auburn Tigers, Jonathan Walton appears to have made his decision official this evening.
Walton is a three-star prospect with an 87 rating according to 247 Sports. At 6'1 / 227, his frame suits him well to play ILB. He's also a very athletic player who played some running back in high school. He has reportedly been clocked around 4.5 in the 40. His blend of size and athleticism remind me a bit of Melvin Ingram coming out of high school.
This is a very good pickup, and it's one the Gamecocks staff, including chief recruiter Kirk Botkin, deserve some credit for. Walton comes out of Bayside Academy in Baldwin Country, AL. It was no easy feat to convince him to come to South Carolina instead of Auburn. Kids like Walton dream of playing for 'Bama or AU. Granted, it seems that AU's plans to make Walton an h-back may have had something to do with his decision (Walton has a better shot at the pros as a LB), but still, I think most folks thought this kid was bound to be a Tiger. It's all the more impressive considering that we didn't turn up the heat on Walton until after the fiasco with Matt Rolin. The staff deserves a lot of credit for selling Walton on what Carolina has to offer.