With the 2018 football season rapidly approaching, standout players from teams across the nation are being recognized for their skills and anticipation is growing for the individual success that they are poised to have in the coming year.
With six Gamecocks listed on national watch lists for their positions, eyes from around the country will be on them throughout the year, evaluating their performances game in and game out.
Junior quarterback Jake Bentley leads the way for the Gamecocks. The starter was named to three nation-wide preseason watch lists, including the watch list of the Maxwell Award for the nation’s best player, the Davey O'Brien Award for the nation’s best quarterback and most recently the Walter Camp Award, given to the nation’s player of the year.
Junior wide receiver Deebo Samuel follows as the next Gamecock to be listed on multiple nation-wide watch lists: The Paul Hornung Award, given annually to the most versatile player in major college football by the Louisville Sports Commission and the Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation’s best receiver regardless of position.
Senior tight end K.C. Crosby was among 64 players named to the John Mackey Award Watch List, given to the nation’s most outstanding tight end of the year.
Junior running back Rico Dowdle was named to the Doak Walker Award Watch List, awarded annually to the most outstanding running back in the nation.
Junior offensive lineman Donell Staley was named to the Rimington Trophy Watch List given annually to the nation’s most outstanding center.
Junior linebacker T.J. Brunson was the only defensive player from the Gamecocks named to a preseason position award watch list. He was one of 106 players named to the Wuerffel Trophy Watch List, awarded to the FBS player that best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement.
With this recognition, there continue to be high hopes for the South Carolina Gamecocks as they strive to break records and defeat highly-ranked teams this upcoming season.