South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney is a Walter Camp All-American for the second straight year.
Clowney was named to the Walter Camp All-American Second Team on Thursday. The junior defensive end had 35 tackles, including 10.5 tackles for loss and three sacks.
It’s Clowney’s second straight season on the Walter Camp All-American team. He was a unanimous first-team selection in 2012.
Below are the Walter Camp All-American first and second teams.
Continue reading “Jadeveon Clowney selected to Walter Camp All-American second team” »
South Carolina linebacker Skai Moore, receiver/returner Pharoh Cooper and kicker Elliott Fry were selected to the All-SEC Freshman Team on Thursday.
Moore blossomed into one of the Gamecocks’ top defensive players during his rookie season, leading the team with 51 tackles. He also added 3.5 tackles for loss, two interceptions, a fumble recovery and a half sack.
Cooper was selected to the team as an “all-purpose player,” a testament to his versatility. The freshman scored a receiving, rushing and passing touchdown this season, and he also filled a void returning kickoffs and punts. As a receiver, Cooper caught three passes for 54 yards.
“That kid’s a ball player, Pharoh Cooper,” South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier said after his team defeated Clemson on Nov. 30. “He’s going to really be something before he leaves here. True freshman, he can run kickoffs, punts, run out of the backfield, catch passes, throw passes. He’s an all-around ball player that, we finally learned he was that good by the midseason.”
Fry made 15-of-18 (83 percent) field goals this season, his longest coming from 45 yards. He also made 50-of-51 extra-point attempts and finished fifth in the conference with 104 points. The honor completed a magnificent first season for the walk-on, which began when he become South Carolina’s first freshman starting kicker since 1996.
Here is a look at the full All-SEC Freshman Team.
Continue reading “Gamecocks place three players on All-SEC Freshman Team” »
Sophomore cornerback Ahmad Christian announced on his Twitter account Thursday he will transfer from South Carolina.
“South Carolina been fun but i have decided i want to be sumwhere closer to home thanks for all the support and ppl behind me love yall (sic),” Christian tweeted.
Christian may be best remembered for giving up a crushing fourth-quarter reception to Tennessee receiver Marquez North in October, setting up the Vols’ game-winning field goal on the final play. Given time, the youngster likely would have developed into an integral player at the Gamecocks’ secondary.
South Carolina is expected to lose its two starting cornerbacks after the season. Senior Jimmy Legree and junior Victor Hampton have a future in the NFL. Christian was third among cornerbacks with 18 tackles, two pass breakups and a forced fumble.
Without Christian, South Carolina’s cornerback position lost considerable depth. The Gamecocks only return three scholarship cornerbacs: junior Ronnie Martin, redshirt freshman Rico McWilliams and true freshman Ali Groves. None of the three have much experience.
South Carolina currently only has one cornerback in its 2014 class, three-star prospect Al Harris Jr.
“hope yall kno i would be the startin corner next year by far lmao (sic),” Christian tweeted earlier this week.
For an assistant coach, South Carolina defensive coordinator Lorenzo Ward has a lot of responsibilities.
The Gamecocks’ defense is Ward’s baby. Yes, his decisions are approved or vetoed by his boss, but Steve Spurrier gives Ward a lot of freedom and control on the defensive side. It’s one of the reasons Ward will be viewed as a fine head coaching candidate, sooner or later.
Ward’s role in South Carolina’s success is reflected in his salary. He is paid a salary of $655,050 annually, making him the 13th-highest paid assistant coach in college football, according to USA TODAY Sports. He’s the sixth-highest paid defensive coordinator in the SEC, behind Alabama’s Kirby Smart ($1.15 million), LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis ($1.11 million), Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham ($850,000), Auburn defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson ($800,000) and Texas A&M defensive coordinator Mark Snyder ($708,000).
Ward’s salary is more than 39 head coaches in the FBS.
South Carolina’s assistant coaching staff is the 20th-highest paid in the country, according to USA TODAY Sports. It’s also the eighth-highest paid staff in the SEC.
Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris is the nation’s highest-paid assistant coach, earning just more than $1.3 million annually. The Tigers have the third-highest paid assistant coaching staff in college football.
Continue reading “Gamecocks have 20th-highest paid assistant coaching staff, paced by DC Lorenzo Ward” »
A day after Jadeveon Clowney and Kelcy Quarles were named to the Associated Press All-SEC first team, the Gamecocks’ two junior defensive linemen received the same honor from league coaches.
Clowney and Quarles were the only South Carolina players represented on the All-SEC Coaches’ First Team. Sophomore running back Mike Davis earned second-team honors from the coaches, the same distinction Davis received from the AP.
Alabama led the conference with five first-team selections, followed by Texas A&M with four, and Auburn and Georgia with three apiece.
Coaches were not permitted to vote for their own players.
Here is a full look at the All-SEC Coaches First and Second Team.
Continue reading “Clowney, Quarles earn All-SEC Coaches First Team honors; Davis second team” »