South Carolina recruiting: 2019 RB recaps visit, Israel Mukuamu finalizes return, hoops chatter
Whenever Will Muschamp lands a commitment, the South Carolina coach drops a #SpursUp on Twitter. Come to SEC Country for the latest news, notes and observations in South Carolina recruiting.
Big 2019 RB recaps visit
Aidan Robbins, a 6-foot-3, 220-pound running back from Louisville, Ky., was among the recruits who stopped by South Carolina’s campus over the weekend. The 2019 prospect enjoyed Friday’s visit with coach Will Muschamp and assistant Bobby Bentley.
“They were all so down to earth. Meeting them in person, getting a feel for the staff — [running backs] coach [Bobby] Bentley is a really nice guy. He’s a great guy. I would love to play under him,” Robbins said.
“Coach Will Muschamp is a great person as well. Coach Bentley and I watched film together and ate lunch, talked and things of that nature. It was great meeting them.”
South Carolina offered earlier this spring.
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“What stood out to me is that it’s football country and that’s what they like to do down there. They’ve got the best of the best, the facilities are second to none,” Robbins said. “The stadium is the best, one of the best stadiums I’ve ever seen. The indoor facility is really nice with the football operations [building] and all of that. The new facility will open up when I come in as a freshman. Yeah, it’s really nice.”
Muschamp made a good first impression.
“Coach Muschamp is a guy who likes to get things done,” Robbins said. “He’s a man of business. That’s what I like to do. He likes to get the job done and that’s my kind of guy. He’s a hands-on guy. That’s what I like.”
This summer, Robbins also has been to Cincinnati, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisville and Wake Forest. A return to Columbia is already in the works.
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“We definitely want to come down for a game. I want to see the game-day experience. I’ve heard so many good things about it,” he said. “I just want to see it for myself. … It’s South Carolina. There’s nothing else I can say. I just want to see it for myself.
“I’ll probably come down in October, sometime around there, maybe. Coach Bentley is going to come up and see me as well.”
Robbins, a rising junior at duPont Manual High School, lists offers from Bowling Green, Cincinnati, Louisville, Miami (Ohio), and Toledo, in addition to South Carolina.
“Any school I’m considering, I’ll consider location, just the people, the staff, the fans — all of that matters to me,” he said. “The academics, of course. … More than anything, the people, like in the program. I want to be in a program with people I can relate with, people that see eye-to-eye with me.”
Israel Mukuamu announces his commitment next Monday. (Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country)
Date set, time finalized
Three-star safety Israel Mukuamu has set the date for his return visit to South Carolina.
The Gamecocks will host him on July 21.
They’ll learn where he plans to play college football three days later. Mukuamu’s commitment will be revealed during a ceremony at Berkeley (S.C.) High School at 11 a.m. next Monday.
Florida State, Indiana and Oklahoma State round out his list of four finalists.
Will Muschamp will get another in-person look at RJ Roderick on Friday. (Hale McGranahan/SEC Country)
Next weekend’s visitors
Mukuamu won’t be the only notable 2018 recruit who will be in Columbia this weekend.
One of the headling guests of the entire summer will be 4-star defensive tackle Rick Sandidge, who’s set to be joined by members of his family, including his mother, who graduated from South Carolina.
Mukuamu and Sandidge (Concord, N.C.) will be joined by 2018 safety commit RJ Roderick and 2018 running back commit Lavonte Valentine. Tysheik Galloway, a 2019 defensive tackle from Belton Honea Path (S.C.) High School and Jalen Huff, a 2020 cornerback from Athens, Ga., are also set to be on campus.
Huff, Roderick and Valentine are expected to work out during the camp, South Carolina’s final high school session of the summer.
Roderick is expected to be back on campus Saturday for a visit. Fellow 2018 commits Ernest Jones, a 3-star linebacker, and Dantrell Barkley, a 3-star junior college defensive tackle, will be there, too.
Three-star wide receiver Tyquan Johnson, a 2018 prospect from Sylvania, Ga., has made arrangements to visit Saturday.
Four-star linebacker Channing Tindall is set to visit Florida on Friday and Florida State on Saturday.
South Carolina evaluates 3-star SF
According to Lou Bezjak of The State, South Carolina basketball coach Frank Martin watched 3-star small forward Jericole Hellems play at the Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C.
“Coach [Frank] Martin has been texting me starting in the last recruiting session. He said he is very interested in me and, of course, I am interested in South Carolina,” Hellems said. “I loved the pace of South Carolina’s game. They like to move fast.
“Coach Martin told me he likes my passion and players like me. And I like coaches like Coach Martin with passion for the game because I love and have passion for the game.”
Hellems, a 2018 prospect from Chaminade College Prep in St. Louis, has offers from Arkansas, Georgia Tech, Indiana, Kansas State, Ole Miss, Missouri and Wichita State.
Bezjak wrote that Hellems will take an official visit to South Carolina in August.
The 6-foot-7, 195-pound prospect is ranked by the 247Sports composite as the No. 94 small forward in the Class of 2018.
Christian Brown, the top 2019 prospect from South Carolina, has an impressive list of high-major offers. (Hale McGranahan/SEC Country)
Local 5-star has interest
Christian Brown, the top in-state basketball prospect for the Class of 2019, told reporters at the adidas Gauntlet stop in Spartanburg that South Carolina has picked up the pace in his recruitment.
“South Carolina, they’re doing better with their recruitment. I like South Carolina. They’re the home team, home school. They’re right in my backyard,” Brown said. “They’re getting better. We’re talking better and stuff.”
According to the 247Sports composite, Brown is ranked as the No. 16 overall prospect in the country. The 6-foot-6, 198-pound prospect from AC Flora High School (Columbia), has several high-major offers to go with South Carolina’s, including from Kansas and Kentucky.
The Gamecocks coaches remain in regular contact.
“We talk about a couple of times a week, the assistant coaches and the staff,” Brown said. “I talk to the players, PJ (Dozier), Sindarius (Thornwell), before they left for the summer league.”
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