With Hawkins opening its potentially lengthy playoff run that night against Reseda (Calif.) Cleveland, Floyd expected he might want to go over a specific aspect of the gameplan. Instead, James left Floyd speechless with what he had to say.
“For a while we were just sitting there and then he just turned back and told me, 'USC has just offered you.' I was pretty excited. I didn't really have words, so I didn't know what to say. I was just thankful.”
With USC being less than three miles away from Hawkins, it was a special scholarship offer for the 6-foot-3, 218-pound sophomore man-child.
“It's pretty big. I'm pretty excited because it's great to have the option of staying home,” Floyd said. “I’m just excited to be able to have the opportunity to possibly stay with my mom and help her out while I'm in school, if that's what I decide to do.”
Though he now has 10 offers, including high-profile schools such as Michigan and Tennessee and Pac-12 programs Washington State, Arizona and Colorado, an offer from USC is one Floyd had been hoping would come. He joins a group of now seven Hawkins players that the Trojans have offered, but Floyd is the first from the 2019 class. He is one of just seven 2019 recruits from Southern California that we know have received an offer thus far.
Floyd’s nimble feet and overall athletic ability despite his hulking frame make him one of the top prospects in his class. Though he still has two years remaining after this season, Floyd has already earned a four-star rating and is already on the radar for future five-star consideration.
His versatility makes him an attractive option for collegiate coaches, who may envision him as a big, bruising running back, a physical linebacker inside or a speed rusher outside. Floyd has played each of those spots and been introduced to the tight end position this season. He also is agile enough that he has played safety some during the offseason in 7-on-7 passing tournaments.
With Hawkins having such a bevy of talent — 12 players rated at least three-star products — Floyd’s role has varied as he’s moved from position to position as was needed on a given night. On Thursday night, he rushed 110 yards on 15 carries at the running back spot. He added two sacks and six tackles as an outside linebacker in a 32-3 win.
“I feel like I'm still in the learning process, trying to learn stuff from guys like Greg [Johnson] and Joseph [Lewis] and Jalen [Hall] and still trying to get comfortable and build confidence in myself that I can make plays.”
Against Cleveland, Floyd even added another position played to his resume.
“It's funny they actually put me at quarterback. I ran it in for a two-point conversion,” he said. “I’ve played [safety] before in seven-on-seven. I'm pretty good at it, but I don't really know what schools want. But I have the ability to play it.”
Because of the various ways his body could develop during his final two and a half years of high school, Floyd has mostly been offered as an athlete, which is how USC identified him as well.
“I'm not sure exactly where they're going to put me, so I'm just going to fit in wherever they need me.”
Floyd is looking forward to getting up to USC’s campus soon to have a more in-depth conversation with the Trojans coaching staff to ascertain where their interest lies and to find out more about the football program and the school itself.
“I’m pretty excited about USC right now and looking forward to seeing what their school is completely about and seeing everything that is going on there,” Floyd said. “I'm actually interested in their academics. I'm not sure what I want to major in, but I'm a pretty intelligent guy. I know what I like, so I believe I'm going to come to a conclusion about that. I just want to know how their classroom is run.”
Floyd said his favorite subject in school is history, which is linked to one of his primary interests in the USC football program.
“There's a lot of tradition within USC and it's pretty exciting cause I know once I go there I'm going to learn all about it and go through all the different traditions that they do as a football team and just as players.”
You can see a couple of highlights of De'Gabriel Floyd against Los Angeles (Calif) Manuel Arts during the regular season at the 1:53 mark:
Or you can check out some De'Gabriel Floyd highlights from the season opener against Los Angeles (Calif.) Hamilton:
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