Already positioned up high in the transfer portal rankings, South Carolina football fans got their 9th #WelcomeHome message in a week on Saturday. The Gamecock Faithful were a little better informed on this commitment than some of the others, however.
South Carolina special teams coordinator Pete Lembo was at the center of the social media hints as he posted a photo from the movie Hoosiers. One particular transfer portal target for the Gamecocks was born and played his first two years of college football in Muncie, Indiana. Indiana, for those unfamiliar, is known as "The Hoosier State."
If Lembo's message wasn't quite enough, South Carolina football tight ends coach Jody Wright added another photo from the Gene Hackman film, along with one of Lembo from when he was the head coach at Ball State from 2011-2015.
Big tight end Brady Hunt obviously was the commitment as he is from Muncie, Indiana and started his college career in-town at Ball State.
On Sunday, though, Hunt went public, making his commitment known for those who didn't play detective with the Gamecock assistant coaching staff's social media posting.
As a player, Hunt is an extremely intriguing get for the South Carolina football program. He was named a Freshman All-American in 2022 after catching 500 yards worth of passes and 5 touchdowns.
The 6'6", 250-pounder missed the 2023 season dealing with an ankle injury, but he entered the year on the watchlist for the John Mackey Award given to the nation's top tight end.
Hunt is a smart player who, as a former quarterback, has a good understanding of how offense is supposed to work. He has a good combination of size and speed; at 250 pounds, while he is not a burner with the ball in his hands, he's certainly not slow.
The rising redshirt junior (who could have three more years of eligibility if he gets a medical waiver for missing 2023) will be a nice compliment to Josh Simon in 2024, and his versatility as a good pass-catcher and a serviceable blocker will allow him to continue fitting in nicely with whoever plays alongside him at tight end beyond next fall.
The Gamecocks came into the transfer portal season with big holes on the roster at running back, wide receiver, and defensive line. They have added 8 players at those positions, but there is reason to believe that USC isn't quite done working the portal.
Gamecock fans can expect Shane Beamer and his staff to continue pursuing a quarterback to battle with rising redshirt freshman LaNorris Sellers, possibly another wide receiver, and a good veteran offensive lineman or cornerback if one were to come available.