Possible Secondary Help for USA

If South Alabama has a visible need during last season's 10-0 run, it was their secondary. Since then, the USA staff has made several additions to help. FBS transfers BJ Scott and Damond Smith, JC transfer Charles Harris and freshman signees EJ May, Ameriol Finley,Dionte McDuffy and Carl Williams joined a group of holdovers in an effort to improve. Yet, more help could be forthcoming.

Before all these other additions this past year, the first move USA made was to sign Gabe Loper out of East Central Community College in December of 2010. The versatile athlete was slotted to help at either corner or safety, where his 6'2" 190lb frame, sub 4.7 40-yard-dash speed and innate coverage skills could offer many options for defensive coordinator Bill Clark and his assistants.

However, things have not gone smoothly. There was some confusion about his academic standing and he was not cleared to join the Jags for the spring semester. The situation did not immediately improve, but now Loper has enrolled for summer classes and, if he passes, he will be eligible to help the Jags.

Loper was a strong contributor at ECCC, racking up 39 tackles (28 solo) and three passes defensed. As a freshman he had two interceptions along with another 30 tackles (20 unassisted). At the time of his signing, USA head coach Joey Jones had this to say about Loper:

"We're real excited about Gabe. He's got some great ability. He's so athletic he played some cornerback (in junior college). Sometimes you get to a point in a season and you have some injuries that you need a guy that you can swing between positions. We're going to start him at safety, though. I think this guy's got some big-time potential."

There have also been indications that redshirt freshman Terrell Brigham might be available for this fall, but JagsJungle.com has determined that he will not due to academics.

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