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2018 Palmetto State Player Rankings 1.0

By Southern Pigskin Staff
SouthernPigskin.com
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Version 1.0 of the Southern Pigskin Palmetto State Rankings starts off as a Top 55. South Carolina has averaged 38.7 FBS signees per year over the last nine recruiting cycles from 2008 to 2016. This number could soon see an increase with Coastal Carolina making the jump from FCS to FBS.

By Barry Every

This past February, 1 (National Signing Day) Clemson, Coastal Carolina and South Carolina signed a total of 17 high school players from in-state. The Tigers inked one while Coastal and USC inked eight apiece.

Despite being ranked 23rd in state population South Carolina boasts six programs that play football at the FCS level. South Carolina State’s entire recruiting class (22) for 2017 hail from the Palmetto State. They were followed by The Citadel (9), Wofford (8), Charleston Southern (7), Presbyterian (5) and Furman (3).

Version 1.0 of the Southern Pigskin Palmetto State Rankings starts off as a Top 55. South Carolina has averaged 38.7 FBS signees per year over the last nine recruiting cycles from 2008 to 2016. This number could soon see an increase with Coastal Carolina making the jump from FCS to FBS.

The class of 2018 looks deep and talented, but unfortunately four of the top players opted to leave the state after their junior seasons. Defensive ends Xavier Thomas (Wilson) and Stephon Wynn (TL Hanna) are headed south to play their senior season at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. Dynamic athlete Jordyn Adams (Blythewood) headed to Cary (Green Hope), North Carolina while Israel Mukumu (Berkeley) moved to Bossier City (Parkway), Louisiana.

Starting the year off in the #1 spot is dual-threat quarterback DaKereon Joyner of Fort Dorchester. As a junior he accounted for 4,734 yards of offense and 56 touchdowns in leading the Patriots to a (12-2) record.

Joyner was named the 2016-2017 Gatorade Player of the Year in South Carolina. He currently has more than a dozen DI offers and is the highest ranked player from the Low Country.

Coming in at #2 is Lewisville defensive lineman Josh Belk. This past season he racked up 78 tackles, 28 TFL’s and seven sacks. Belk has already made a verbal commitment to reigning National Champs Clemson.
Clemson has also picked up a commitment from South Pointe athlete Derion Kendrick. Kendrick accounted for just over 3,900 yards and 45 touchdowns while leading the Stallions to the SCHSL 4A State Championship. Kendrick comes in at #3.

The next player may be a bit of a sleeper at this time but that won’t last long. Receiver Sam Pinckney, III of Greenwood hits the scale at 6-foot-4, 210-pounds. In 12 games as a junior he caught 72 passes for 1,200 yards and 14 touchdowns. He currently has an offer from the Gamecocks.

Rounding out the Top Five is Mr. Do-it-all Bryce Thompson of the Ben Lippen School. Thompson scored all four Falcon touchdowns in the SCISA AAA State Championship. In 11 games he racked up 1,819 total yards and hit pay dirt 24 times while also picking off three passes. Thompson has verbally committed to Virginia Tech.

Since ESPN Coastal encompasses the Low Country with radio coverage we would not be doing justice leaving out the other three ranked members from the area. Somehow Ronald (RJ) Roderick of Cane Bay is not yet a household name. The junior signal caller carried the ball 229 times for 1,778 yards and 23 touchdowns. His size (6-foot, 205-pounds) lends itself to projecting as an every down back at the next level. Roderick makes his entry at #9.

Also making the initial Top 55 are Fort Dorchester teammates Justin Williams and Kenneth Brown. Williams was named First Team All-Area this past season after catching 58 passes for 1,000 yards and 11 touchdowns. Brown is your prototypical giant inside linebacker. The pair comes in at #18 and #22 respectively.

This list will be updated and expanded several times prior to Signing Day 2018.

At Southern Pigskin we hope to bolster the recruiting of high school football prospects in the Southeastern region of the country. One avenue that will increase visibility while honing football skills is attending camps.
On March, 11 at the Pooler Recreation Complex in Savannah, Georgia Southern Pigskin, ESPN Coastal and Explosive Sports Training will be hosting their first Explosive Southern Pigskin Football Camp of the 2017 season. 

The top performers will be recognized on SoutherPigskin.com and ESPNCoastal.com. For more information and registration you can go to http://explosivesports.info/campRegister.html.