Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Gamecocks grab Winston-Salem lineman

Winston-Salem Parkland High defensive tackle JT Surratt has committed to South Carolina. He chose the Gamecocks over offers from Louisville, Marshall, N.C. A&T and Western Carolina.

His decision was reinforced by Columbia’s relatively short distance from Winston-Salem.

“I’m big on family, and I’ve got folks in Columbia and in Charlotte,” he said this afternoon. “I wanted to be able to get the college experience without going too far from home.”

Surratt visited the school about two weeks ago, thought on it awhile and then picked the Gamecocks.

“I had real good relationships with my position coach, Brad Lawing, and my recruiter, coach (Jay) Graham,” he said.

Surratt piled up remarkable numbers as a Parkland junior. His 107 tackles included 27 sacks and 22 tackles for loss. That effort earned him all-conference selection.

One thing the Gamecocks coaches liked about him is his strength; he can bench-press 410 pounds and holds Parkland’s record for the squat of 605 pounds.

--Stan Olson

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