Name: Toure Boyd
Height/Weight: 6'1, 195 pounds
Hometown: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Rating: 247Composite: Three Star Rivals: Three Star ESPN: Three Star
After losing four star cornerback Mark Fields, the Gamecocks have been searching for a defensive back to replace him. If Boyd is the one to do it, I don't know. As a JUCO prospect he chose the Gamecocks over offers from the Arizona Wildcats, Utah Utes and Washington State Cougars. With former starter Brison Williams and former backup Kadetrix Marcus graduating, Boyd will have the chance to use his time in the JUCO ranks to gain an edge on other incoming defensive backs this fall.
There are quite a few things to like about Boyd from watching his film. Probably his biggest strength is the intensity he plays with. He is a very aggressive player and honestly, he reminds me a lot of DJ Swearinger. He is an absolute headhunter and will knock you on the ground time and time again. Another major strength is his speed. At first I wasn't sure if it was just the fact that he was playing against inferior competition or just that he was naturally speedy, but after watching his film, he definitely has a dangerous burst of speed. This translates into him being a dangerous pass rusher, which I know USC fans will love after this last season. He is also a great special teams player. he isn't afraid to block, and whenever you are credited with multiple blocked field goals, that means he will be a great addition to what was an up and down season for USC's special teams.
While being aggressive is a good thing, it does bring a few downsides with the way that Boyd plays. The biggest thing that Boyd needs to work on is his tackling. He goes for the big hit every play and doesn't tend to wrap up. While this worked for his in junior college, he will need to learn when to go for the big play and when to just wrap up. Another issue is going to be working on his coverage skills. While he does appear solid in his film, there are times when he jumps a route or plays farther back than he should. Most of his weaknesses can be easily fixed just by getting him on campus and working with Grady Brown.
Like I said, I don't know if Boyd is supposed to be a replacement for Fields or not, but Boyd is a solid addition to the program. Fans have been clamoring for a headhunter like DJ, and they will be satisfied with Boyd. I expect that he will be a heavy contributor on special teams, possibly lining up where former player Sidney Rhodes lined up for kickoffs and will likely be used for field goal coverage as well. As far as playing at safety, Boyd will see playing time this season, but I do not expect him to start. Until he can work on his coverage skills, he will likely see most of his action as a pass rusher.