Byrd pledges to South Carolina
The 6'6", 265 pound Ronald Byrd, who plays for Callaway High School in Hogansville, GA, has a frame very similar to two recent South Carolina defensive line signees - Clifton Geathers and Jarriel King. USC Coach Ron Cooper saw the raw but tremendous potential that Byrd possesses on the gridiron and made the Peach State standout a priority in this recruiting class. That pursuit paid off on Sunday when Byrd committed to the Gamecocks on his official visit.
GamecockAnthem.com spoke with Coach Eric Woods, who coached Byrd at Callaway High School, and he sung Byrd's praises for all that he has accomplished in high school and what he has meant to their football program.
"Ronald's a good kid. He's always been great for us. He practices very well, and he always gives us 100-percent. He's been a joy to coach," said Woods. "He's done a heck of a job on the field for us and off the field too as far as workouts and leadership. He has helped put the program a little bit more on the map as far as recruiting goes."
Woods believes that Byrd, who runs a 4.8 second forty yard dash, is versatile enough to play offensive line, defensive line or even tight end on the college level with his athleticism and frame.
"He's around 265 pounds right now, and with his frame he's capable of carrying upwards of 300. I think he projects best as an offensive lineman, but with the right coaching, there's no doubt in my mind he could be a good player on the defensive line. I could also see him playing tight end."
Byrd chose South Carolina over major programs like Auburn, Arkansas, Ole Miss, Louisville, Purdue and Indiana, and Woods said that Cooper and the Gamecocks did an excellent job recruiting him throughout the process.
"South Carolina's done a good job recruiting him. He's really liked talking to them during the (recruiting process). Steve Spurrier visited him at our school last month, and that was a great experience that brought a lot of publicity to our school."
Byrd helped lead Callaway to an 8-3 record and a second-place finish in the region in 2007. He becomes USC's 19th commitment in the 2008 recruiting class.
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