The Daily Gamecock

Quarles to leave for NFL

Junior leads Gamecocks in sacks, tackles-for-loss

Junior defensive tackle Kelcy Quarles had decided to forgo his senior season at South Carolina, and will enter the NFL Draft after this season, The State reported Wednesday.

Quarles’ father Buddy announced that his son made the decision after speaking with his coaches and agreeing that entering the draft was in the defensive tackle’s best interest.

Quarles has had a breakout year in his junior season, leading the Gamecocks in both sacks (seven) and tackles-for-loss (eleven), and he has the fourth-best sack total in the SEC.

The Hodges, S.C., native has benefited from the extra attention defensive line teammate Jadeveon Clowney has received this season, allowing Quarles to take on less blockers, but Buddy hopes his son will be selected somewhere in the first three rounds of the draft.

Quarles has been told by coach Steve Spurrier that he will be honored alongside the team’s seniors before Nov. 30’s clash with Clemson at Williams-Brice Stadium.

While the announcement was made Wednesday, Quarles discussed a possible foray into the NFL after practice earlier in the week.

“You hear stuff about that and you just have to stay humble,” Quarles said. “Stay grounded and stay rooted in what you are doing and just keep playing football,”