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The Final Cockdown: #17 Chaz Elder

The senior defensive back has one season left to live up to the four-star hype.

South Carolina v Missouri Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images

Chaz Elder

RS Senior
Defensive Back
6-2 / 200 lbs.
Atlanta, GA


A four-star recruit out of Banneker High School in the Atlanta area, Elder chose the Gamecocks over in-state favorite Georgia and Arkansas and Vanderbilt.

Rated as one of the top safeties for his class, 247 also has him as the 19th best prospect out of Georgia for 2012.

College Career

Before a regressive 2015 season, Elder accumulated 24 appearances and nine starts in his first two active seasons with South Carolina. After redshirting his first season on campus, he tallied a career-best six starts in 2013 racking up 29 tackles.

He sustained the production in 2014, but on a more porous unit, and only made two appearances last year.

2016 Outlook

After starting preseason camp atop one of the safety positions, Elder hasn’t participated in the full-contact drills since the team went to full pads. As of today, it looks like the fifth-year senior has a spot in the starting line-up of defensive backs that’s bound to be rotated in and out.

Elder hasn’t been the shut-down safety the fans and coaches who recruited him had hoped for, but that’s not entirely his fault and his career thus far with South Carolina hasn’t been a failure. But, after a rocky and limited 2015 season, Elder has one season left to righten the ship and serve as one of the undisputed leaders on the Gamecocks defensive backs unit.

To have a successful season though, Elder will have to erase the giving philosophy of playing off of the line of scrimmage and deep in the secondary and embrace the aggressive and fearless style his new coaching staff wants out of him.