Jadeveon Clowney was spectacular in 2012
Clowney returns for his junior season with South Carolina and made quite a name for himself after the Outback Bowl. Clowney will be a force to be reckoned with in 2013.
This past season, the Gamecocks finished 11-2 and 6-2 in the SEC. Clowney's return gives South Carolina a chance at greatness.
The 6'6" frame of Clowney has NFL scouts buzzing. He has been very impressive in his first two years at South Carolina, and perhaps in his third season, he can lead South Carolina to a title.
Clowney sends helmets flying
Jadeveon Clowney started the new year off right by letting the world know that next year, he will be bringing big hits. Clowney had a mouth-dropping hit against Michigan in this year's Outback Bowl, where he recovered his own forced fumble.
The star defensive end has the capability to knock opposing players out of ball games. At 256 pounds, Clowney comes hitting at full force every time.
Clowney forced three fumbles this past season, none more exciting than against Michigan.
His explosiveness can cause turnovers easily. He is able to deliver a hit on a running back, burst through an offensive line and stir up the quarterback.
Clowney's big-hitting capability provides South Carolina with an enforcer on defense. He will cause some big plays rushing the edge.
Clowney will attempt to lead nation in sacks
Clowney was one of the best pass-rushers in the country this past season. Coming into his third season with the Gamecocks, he will have a chance to be the best pass-rusher in all of college football.
Opposing quarterbacks will have a tough time keeping away from Clowney in 2013. His sophomore campaign left him tied for No. 3 in the country in sacks, bringing down the quarterback 13 times.
With his size and strength, Clowney is one of the most difficult players to block. Every game, he will be pressuring the quarterback all season.
In 2012, South Carolina finished No. 6 in team sacks with 43 in total. The Gamecocks will look to get even more with Clowney's presence.
He has a good chance to lead the country in sacks this coming season.
Clowney controls the edge
South Carolina's talented defensive end does the majority of his work in the backfield. Whether he is bringing down the quarterback or stuffing the ball carrier for a loss of yards, Clowney disrupts opposing teams' backfields.
Clowney makes his biggest plays once he gets into the backfield. This past season, Clowney led the team with an astonishing 23.5 tackles for loss. That accounts for nearly half of his total tackles.
He also hurried the quarterback five times and knocked down two passes as well. Clowney can ruin an offense's game plan, and cause chaos bursting off of the line.
It will be difficult to get by Clowney when running the ball, and will be even more difficult to slow him from sacking the passer.
The Gamecocks defense will be strong in 2013
Along with Clowney, South Carolina brings back some important pieces on defense. Some tough playmakers return in the secondary to complement the pass rush.
This past season, junior Jimmy Legree had three interceptions, including a 70-yard interception returned for a touchdown. Sophomore Brison Williams intercepted two passes and made 52 tackles on the season.
What South Carolina will miss is their top four leading tacklers; all four were seniors in 2012. Four players will have to step up and become factors, especially within the linebacking core.
With a strong pass rush that features a star such as Jadeveon Clowney, and an improving secondary that returns, South Carolina's defense will be tough.
Clowney may be the best defensive player in NCAA
Although it is rare for a defensive player to win the Heisman, Jadeveon Clowney has the talent to do so. He is a disruptive animal on the defensive end, wreaking havoc on opponents.
Clowney may be not only the best defensive lineman, but also the best defensive player in all of college football next season. It is possible that Clowney could compete to be a Heisman finalist, as well as win many other awards.
The pass-rush skills that Clowney brings to the table instantly puts South Carolina in the discussion as one of the best defenses, as well as possibly one of the best teams.
Clowney can do so much for South Carolina. His figure is similar to that of Jason-Pierre Paul, as he has the height and long arms which can bother quarterbacks.
South Carolina returns their starting quarterback, Connor Shaw, on offense. Clowney could be considered the "quarterback" of the Gamecock defense. 2013 will serve to be a big year for Jadeveon Clowney. He will give South Carolina a chance at a national championship.