UT Commit Looking Forward to USF Visit

Troup County's 3-star defensive lineman J.C. Copeland is quick and explosive. He committed to Tennessee back in May, but is weighing his options and will be tripping to Tampa for his official visit with USF this weekend. Read on for all the details. Stay informed with USFNation.com

The Bulls are hoping to bolster their defensive line and one player they're looking at is J.C. Copeland, Scout.com three-star defensive end from Troup County, GA. Copeland committed to Tennessee early in the process, and took his first official visit to Knoxville last week, but has one more on tap.

"Yes sir, I'm going to visit South Florida this weekend," said Copeland. "I'm really looking forward to going down there."

Copeland (6'0-270) is listed as a defensive end but has played all over the d-line, recording an amazing 28 sacks and a bunch of tackles for a loss this season. As a junior he had 58 tackles, 12 sacks and 10 tackles for a loss.

"I'm quick, and explosive, and use my speed to my advantage," said Copeland.

With Lane Kiffin's departure from Tennessee, J.C. has heard from a number of colleges, but South Florida was the one school that kept pursuing Copeland, even before the coaching change. He's been recruited by Bulls Coach Phil McGeoghan.

"He's a really nice guy, and has been talking to me for a long time, even after I committed to Tennessee," said Copeland. "We're close and have a good relationship."

"He tells me how much they want me and how well I fit the program and what they're trying to do at South Florida."

"I also talk with the D-line coach Kevin Patrick, he wants me to come down there because he seen me play."

Copeland said he's familiar with the USF program through a former teammate Cory Grissom, a defensive tackle that plays for the Bulls.

"Cory tells me a lot good things about USF, and hasn't told me anything bad," said Copeland. "He wants me to come down there with him and play."

Do you guys talk about lining up next to each other on the defensive line and causing havoc?

"Yes sir, we didn't really play next to each other in high school, he was leaving when I got there, and we talk about that."

Copeland says he still considers himself committed to Tennessee, but is eager to see what the Bulls have to offer.

"I'm still committed to Tennessee, but I want to go down there and check it out, and see what they're all about," said Copeland.

J.C. took notice of what the Bulls are doing on the field, and told USFN previously he watched the game against FSU.

"I saw them play FSU, and what they did was shocking," said Copeland. "That whole d-line was creating a lot of pressure. I was impressed with their rotation and what they did."

Even though he remains committed is there a chance if he liked what he saw he could make a change?

"Yes sir," said Copeland.

What is the explosive D-lineman looking for in a program?

"I'm looking for stability," said Copeland.

J.C. said he knows about the USF coaching changed and has heard good things about the new Head coach Skip Holtz.

"I know he took his last team to a Bowl game and won the conference this past year," said Copeland. "I'm looking forward to meeting him.

Besides the visit to USF, there was talk about him taking a visit on Jan. 29, but that may not happen.

"Right now I'm undecided if I'm going to take another visit after this weekend."

J.C. will make the trip with his mother and admits they don't know a lot about the program itself, but are looking forward to finding out.

Copeland played his last high school in the Georgia North/South All-Star game last month, forcing a fumble that was returned for a touchdown.

"That was a lot of fun, they had a picture of me in the paper with the ball behind me in the air, but someone else picked it up and scored."

With the football season over Copeland is trying to focus on recruiting and more importantly school.

"I'm just working on my grades so I can get somewhere," said Copeland.

Stay tuned with USFNation.com as we keep you updated on Copeland's visit and the rest of USF's recruiting class.

For more info and my take or to share your thoughts with other USFNation insiders click it here for the recruiting scoop!


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