SDS talent evaluators Jon Cooper and Brad Crawford spent several months breaking down last year’s highlights, incoming talent and projected 2014 impact following spring practice to compile a list of the SEC’s Top 100 players heading into fall. Athletes were selected by position then ranked overall counting down to No. 1.
Stick with SDS throughout summer and get in on the action using the hashtag #SDSTop100 as we unveil a new player daily leading up to opening night on Aug. 28.
74. Skai Moore, Soph., LB, South Carolina
Recruited out of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., as an instant impact player on a unit depleted at the linebacker spot, Moore was everything Gamecock defensive coaches expected and more as a freshman last season. He led South Carolina with 56 stops and his relentless pursuit of the football led to four interceptions and a fumble recovery as the top playmaker in Lorenzo Ward’s back seven.
Built like a wide receiver, Moore’s rangy and one of the SEC’s best in coverage as a linebacker. Production picked up in October when Moore had a better understanding of college formations and offensive tendencies. The game slowed down, play recognition was easier and Moore blossomed into a reliable playmaker.
Before recording two interceptions during the Gamecocks’ Capital One Bowl victory over Wisconsin, Moore was named to the All-SEC Freshman Team by league coaches and a second team Freshman All-American courtesy of 247Sports. This fall, he’ll help understudy Bryson Allen-Williams adjust to the college level in his true freshman season and create a dominant duo with Kaiwan Lewis, No. 98 in our Top 100, and Sharrod Golightly at linebacker.
2013 statistics: 56 tackles, 3.5 TFL, 4 INT, FR
2014 projection: 67 tackles, 4.5 TFL, 3 INT, 2 FR
Photo Credit: Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports