South Carolina Football: Breaking Down the Top 2015 Target at Each Position
Even with all eyes on the 2014 South Carolina football season, some of the focus will shift to the 2015 recruiting class.
The Gamecocks have a golden opportunity to haul in some elite recruits. South Carolina has already landed top prospects, but there is still work to be done.
Steve Spurrier's staff will be out on the recruiting trails looking to fill in the roster with great talents.
Even though South Carolina already has commitments from top players, they remain on this list due to the unpredictability of recruits and the fact that South Carolina will need to continue to target them to maintain their commitment status.
Here is a breakdown of the top targets for the 2015 South Carolina Gamecocks recruiting class.
Brandon Wimbush, 4-Star Dual Threat QB (Jersey City, NJ)
Weight: 205 pounds
Wimbush is a true dual-threat quarterback who may even lean toward being more of a scrambler.
He needs to work on his accuracy and arm strength because he isn't the most natural passer. But he has the intangibles to be a successful quarterback in Spurrier's offense.
Wimbush seems to be leaning toward Penn State since he has shown a strong interest in Penn State's new head coach James Franklin.
While his abilities with his arm are questionable, Wimbush is a playmaker and could be a nice fit for South Carolina.
Bryce Love, 4-star All-Purpose Running Back (Wake Forest, NC)
Weight: 180 pounds
South Carolina needs to bring in a running back, though some of the higher rated running backs do not have much interest in coming to Columbia. My question is why wouldn't you want to run in Spurrier's offense considering the recent success of Mike Davis and Marcus Lattimore.
Anyway, Bryce Love is one of the higher rated recruits who is being targeted at the position.
Love is an all-purpose back who is an absolute speed demon since he is also an elite track and field sprinter.
It's likely that Love stays in the area of the Carolinas, so while South Carolina seems on the outside looking in, there is a chance for them to get into the mix with some hard recruiting.
Love's speed should not be passed up.
George Campbell, 5-star Wide Receiver (Tarpon Springs, FL)
Weight: 184 pounds
South Carolina isn't exactly pursuing George Campbell heavily. Yet, everyone is trying to get into the mix for one of the nation's top recruits.
He's viewed as one of those once-in-a-while talents who opened up his recruitment after decommitting from the University of Michigan.
Campbell is big, agile, smart and everything a coach could want in a wide receiver and a football player.
There's a reason why everyone wants this kid.
Does South Carolina have a chance? Slim to none.
But, the program gave him an offer. As the Gamecocks should.
South Carolina already has Dexter Neal committed and he will also be a big target at the position so the Gamecocks can retain his commitment.
Martez Ivey, 5-star Offensive Tackle (Apopka, FL)
Weight: 270 pounds
Like George Campbell, Martez Ivey could be the rare, supremely talented player that comes around every once in a while.
Ivey is a star offensive tackle in the making. He is huge, athletic and quick with his feet. His footwork is already impressive for a player of his size and it will likely get better while playing at the college level.
Whether it is run blocking or pass protection, Ivey can do it all.
Florida is the early favorite to keep Ivey in state, though South Carolina is close and can make up some ground.
The Gamecocks' great offensive line this season could give Ivey a taste of the success he could have, and this can be used to lure him to Columbia.
Shameik Blackshear, 5-star Weak-Side Defensive End (Bluffton, SC)
Weight: 240 pounds
I know Shameik Blackshear is already committed to South Carolina, but that doesn't mean he shouldn't be its top target on the defensive line.
Blackshear isn't quite on the Jadeveon Clowney echelon of a prospect, though he is pretty darn close.
He has a strong frame that will continue to fill out, and an explosiveness that can wreak havoc on opposing offensive lines and quarterbacks.
Blackshear uses his hands well and has a hungry edge every time the ball is snapped. He can become a true menace on the Gamecocks' defensive line.
Keep on targeting Blackshear and making him happy, South Carolina.
Dante Sawyer, who was a 2014 commit, did not qualify academically at South Carolina and will be playing junior college football this season. He will remain a top target in the 2015 class as he works toward being academically cleared to join the Gamecocks.
Sherrod Pittman, 4-star Outside Linebacker (Jacksonville, FL)
Weight: 224 pounds
Sherrod Pittman is another committed player who needs to remain a top target for South Carolina.
Pittman is a natural tackler and though he is undersized right now, he could project as an agile outside linebacker if South Carolina does decide to shift away from the 4-2-5. If not, the Gamecocks could turn Pittman into a "Spur" linebacker.
He will need to improve in coverage, though Pittman has the skill set to play the spur.
Pittman is going to be visiting some other programs despite his verbal commitment to South Carolina. This could spell some trouble for the Gamecocks' staff.
Spurrier and his staff will need to continue to target Pittman to keep him committed to the garnet and black.
Mark Fields, 4-star Cornerback (Cornelius, NC)
Weight: 183 pounds
South Carolina still needs cornerbacks and Mark Fields could be a very good one to have.
Fields is currently committed to the Gamecocks after building a strong connection with defensive backs coach Grady Brown.
Fields climbed his way up 247Sports rankings during his junior season and will likely continue to rise a bit during his senior campaign.
I highly doubt a team like Alabama could come in and swoop Fields away from the Gamecocks, but that doesn't mean South Carolina can afford to turn the other way.
Tarvarus McFadden, 5-star Safety (Fort Lauderdale, FL)
Weight: 198 pounds
When you see Tarvarus McFadden, you immediately think "ideal safety."
McFadden embodies the prototypical vision of having a big, athletic safety who can instill fear in an opponent's receivers and quarterback.
He's huge and a playmaker, which are two qualities that are extremely valuable in a safety.
McFadden's speed to cover center field on the football area does bring up a question, but ho-hum to that.
Florida State and Clemson are way up there in the mix to land McFadden. South Carolina is on the next tier down to haul in this elite safety.
The Gamecocks should make some moves to bring McFadden to the South Carolina football program.