If the Will Muschamp era at South Carolina is going to prove to be a success, landing a recruiting upset or two will be needed to kickstart the movement. Judging from the Top 4 from Florence, S.C., defensive end Xavier Thomas, the Gamecocks have already identified the player they need, now they just have to sign him.

While participating at this weekend’s elite The Opening camp, Thomas revealed his Top 4 list and South Carolina remains very much alive in his recruitment:


The 6-foot-3, 240-pound Thomas ranks as a five-star prospect, the No. 3 recruit in the nation as well as South Carolina’s No. 1 overall prospect, according to 247Sports Composite Ratings. Scheduled to be a participant in the 2017 U.S. Army All-American Game, Thomas is believed to be leaning toward staying in-state and picking between South Carolina and Clemson.

Without a doubt, Thomas has the potential to be the player the Gamecocks desperately need to spark a return to the not too distant past of 2009-2013, when South Carolina was the one ruling the Palmetto State rivalry.