Freshman T.J. Gurley (5'10", 183) has been getting work at cornerback the past few days. The injury to senior cornerback Akeem Auguste, is likely to keep him out for five weeks. Even then, it is uncertain if he will be back at full speed.
According to Scott Hood of GamecockCentral.com:
"Based on what we heard after practice, the field CB spot is a four-man race b/t Legree, Christian, Elder and Gurley. Legree the favorite."
The inclusion of Gurley is interesting. He is a true freshman but was a highly recruited high school player. Compliments of his player profile on 247 sports, here is a copy of his high school BIO:
HIGH SCHOOL: T.J. Gurley earned Class AAA all-region and all-state honors as a senior defensive back at Cairo (Ga.) High School. He was also Preseason Class AAA All-State selection his senior year, a three-year varsity starter coached by Tom Fallow, and earned first team all-area and all-region and honorable mention all-state honors as a junior. Not only that, but he participated in the RisingSeniors.com junior all-star game and was ranked a three-star recruit, the 55th-best cornerback and the 51st-best player in the state by 247Sports.com. His other suitors included Arkansas, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Mississippi State, Southern Miss and Tennessee. On top of all of that, he was an honor roll student.
No doubt that South Carolina needs Akeem Auguste back. His 58 tackles were fifth on the team in 2010 and his return was much anticipated this year.
In addition, his senior leadership ability will also be missed.
Though the injury is a tough break, the South Carolina cupboard isn't as bare as it may appear. The combination of players vying for the slot will work its self out.
It is certainly not the way you want to do things. But the situation will actually make for additional depth at that position towards the middle of the season. Just in time for the real difficult period of the SEC wars.
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