Question: The big day is coming up, you're about to enroll at South Carolina, what's really going through your head right now?
Question: So when are you heading to Columbia?
Answer: Coach Gillespie came in yesterday and told me to come in Thursday, so I haven't left Tampa yet. I'm going to leave here at 4:30, so I'll be down in Columbia probably around 11:30 or 12.
Question: I have talked with some other guys from this class, and they honestly believe this class can be one that can help South Carolina take the next step as a program. How do you feel about that?
Answer: Yeah, I see it that way. A lot of guys in this class, they want to put South Carolina on the map. You look at these all-star games and a lot of guys are going to USC, the Trojans, and all of these big-name, established programs and we want South Carolina to be one of those established programs next year or the year after that. We want guys to say, ‘Oh, South Carolina is a name school, I want to go there. They've got a name program.'
Question: Looking back at your recruitment, it was a long road. Take us back. You had South Carolina in your top group even when you committed to Tennessee. What were some of your thoughts on the program then?
Answer: I mean I liked South Carolina, but I went to Tennessee and liked the experience. Money isn't a problem at Tennessee at all; they've got all of these top-notch facilities. It's just ridiculous. And then when I came to South Carolina I figured it was closer to home. And I felt more like family with the guys on the team, and I really didn't catch that bond with the guys at Tennessee. Everything that glitters is not gold. Tennessee just probably wasn't the best for me. Overall, South Carolina is a better fit for me.
Question: There has been a lot of talk about the David Reaves situation when he left South Carolina for Tennessee. While there were reports that Reaves visited your home, he has denied that. What can you tell us about that whole situation?
Answer: Oh, man. (Laughs) It's alright, though. He's trying to keep all of his ties good in South Carolina, and I'm going to keep it the same way. But let's put it this way he did come into my house. He talked to my father, and I can't believe he lied about that. He talked to my father, my grandma was here, all my sisters, my mom was here, so it was five people, and then I can name the people it was Reaves, Kiffin and the athletic director, I don't know his name, but all of those people were at my house. I'm not going to sit here and lie and waste your time. I'm not a lying type of person; that's not how my father raised me. There's no point in me lying, what would that establish? But for him to say he didn't come into my house and all of that stuff you can say that's all a lie. He's trying to keep his ties in South Carolina, and I understand that, but you shouldn't have to lie about stuff you said about a player. That's all I can say there. I'm not trying to make Reaves sound like a bad guy in South Carolina. He's not a bad guy I'll just leave it at that.
Question: There were some rumors that he called others as well…
Answer: He called all the players; he called all of the recruits that committed to South Carolina. He called them. Trust me, I know all of them, and they called me and were like, ‘Did he call you and talk to you?' I'm like, ‘Dude, he just left my house!'
Question: Getting back to something positive. You're coming in as a freshman running back; South Carolina is really in a spot where they have needed a speedy, game-breaker type back. What type of impact do you think you can make as a freshman and do you have any goals?
Answer: I'm not going to say too much really. I'm just going to come out have fun and work hard. I'm just going to work out and attempt to just do what I do and let my talent speak for itself, that's all.
Question: Is there a running back out there, college or pro, or even a childhood favorite that you model your game after or look up to?
Answer: I mean, I like a lot of running backs. I like Terrell Davis; he was one of my favorite running backs. I like Ladainian Tomlinson a lot. I would say those are the only two running backs I really like.
Question: You're going to be making the transition from high school ball to SEC play, what do you think will be the hardest part of that transition?
Answer: I would say the speed of the game. Don't get me wrong, in high school I was faster than everybody. I was like, I don't know… (Laughs) I was faster than everybody by a lot. Like hitting the holes, I didn't have to hit them as fast as I did. Like I hit them fast, but I didn't have to hit them as fast as I did. In college I've got be 110 percent at everything I do. I've got to get a step in front of those guys. That's how you want to be, a step in front of everybody. That's how I've got to get.
Question: Looking ahead to the winter workouts you're about to go through, have you heard anything about them from coaches or current players?
Answer: I know the winter workouts are the crazy ones; that's all they told me. They said they're crazy.
Question: You recently got to play in the Under Armour All-American game. What was that like playing with those guys on national TV?
Answer: It was fun. I met a lot of good guys. We were all cracking jokes; I had a lot of guys laughing. I mean it was just fun playing with a lot of guys I'm going to play again on the next level. It was real fun. I liked it. I enjoyed it. The talent, it was on a higher level, and it will get the best out of you.
Question: The Outback Bowl didn't turn out the way you hoped, obviously…
Answer: Truthfully, that didn't affect me at all. I watched it while I was in Orlando, but that didn't affect me at all. I mean we got off to a slow start and couldn't really punch them in the mouth. They punched us in the mouth first. We never had a really good chance to react. And Garcia, I don't know, he just really didn't look like Garcia.
Question: I know you did get to check out a USC practice or two down there. What were some of your thoughts on that?
Answer: I had fun. Some of the guys they were talking about they couldn't wait till I got there, some of the guys were talking trash… (Laughs) It's all love though.
Question: You've talked before about having a good relationship with your offensive linemen. Why do you believe that is so important?
Answer: I've been a big o-line fan since I started running the ball really. I've always had a really good relationship with my line since from like pee-wee to midget playing football at a young age. If you treat your line with respect, they're going to give it back to you. Those guys are going to fight for you. They're going to be to put everything on the field for you. I feel like getting up there early and getting in with the linemen and building that church-relationship, that brother bond with a young cat like me (is important). They're going to put their necks on the line and put it all on the field. I feel that's real important. Linemen really don't really get the hype or the respect they should be getting when they are the ones that are doing everything.
Question: Do you have anything you do just to get you hyped up before a game? Some guys like to play music, others just like to focus, what type of guy are you?
Answer: The music thing I don't really do too much. I'll listen to music when I work out and it gets me hyped up for about five minutes, but after that I just block it out. I just stay to myself, really. I'll sit there and talk to myself. I'll pray. I'll pray for me and I'll pray for the team. That's pretty much it and I get hyped like that. People ask me how I get hyped real good, but I just kind of block everything out and that's how I do it.
Question: Steve Spurrier has a vision of bringing the first ever SEC Championship to South Carolina. You've talked before about what you think this class can do. But what would it mean to be remembered as a member of the team that accomplished that feat?
Answer: I mean to be a part of that, that would be written in South Carolina history and we would all be remembered. People would be talking about all the future NFL players and would remember back and say, ‘He took us, this team right here, when we had him, and him, and him, and him and that (team) took us to the championship.' People would remember that for the rest of their lives. They would tell their young kids; their kids would tell their young kids. For that to happen… Thinking about that right now it's kind of got me excited. That's something that you can spread around in the locker room and something you can get in your head. Great teams… to have a real good team it's got to start in practice and the weight room. Championships are won in the weight room. We don't have to be the best team, really; you've got to have that type of mentality, like I'm going to win, I'm going to make it to the big show no matter what. And the person that lines up in front of me, they've got to take it away from me. They've got to fight, they've got to earn it, they've got to do what they've got to do to stop me from getting there. You'll see every school stacked with five-star players and those guys get it in their heads, they'll say, ‘I'm the best. I'm the best. I'll beat you, no matter what.' You've got to get that type of mentality. And truthfully that's, to me, how you get to the big show. Those guys put it in their heads that they can't be beat, and then they show it on the football field. Like at Florida, they don't have all five-star players, truthfully some of those guys had to work to get big. That's how I look at it.
Question: Wow! Are you ready to kick off right now?
Answer: Heck, yeah!
Question: Lastly, and most importantly, are the dreads going to make it to South Carolina, too?
Answer: (Laughs) These are my babies, man. These are my babies. They're definitely going to come with me. This is me right here. That's how I feel. This is just me. These are a part of me.