South Carolina Football: 5-star Gamecock signee shining at All-American Bowl

South Carolina football signee Josiah Thompson (5-star offensive tackle) is shining at All-American Bowl practice.

South Carolina football signee Josiah Thompson at the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas back in December
South Carolina football signee Josiah Thompson at the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas back in December / Ken Ruinard - staff / USA TODAY NETWORK
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In the 2024 recruiting class, South Carolina football signed two 5-star prospects for just the second time in the modern recruiting era. EDGE Dylan Stewart has been turning heads at Under Armour All-American Game practice (and so has 4-star tight end Michael Smith and 3-star receiver Debron Gatling). Now, Stewart's fellow 5-star is shining at another national All-American showcase.

Gamecock signees Fred "JayR" Johnson (4-star linebacker/EDGE) and Josiah Thompson (5-star offensive tackle) are All-American Bowl All-Americans, meaning that the South Carolina football recruiting class has 9 different players honored as high school All-Americans. At the All-American Bowl practices in San Antonio, Texas, Thompson has been one of the brightest stars.

According to a compilation of report from On3's Collin Ginnan (most of the observations about Thompson coming from Charles Power), the Dillon, SC native has been a "clear standout."

Thompson picked up clear and obvious wins in 1-on-1 situations against 5-star EDGE LJ McCray (Florida) and 4-star defensive tackle Hevin Brown-Shuler (Clemson). He also was described as "living up to the hype" and showed a "fantastic anchor" in pass blocking situations.

Thompson got a lot of reps at guard (mainly because most of the nation's top linemen play tackle, so there are too many guys to play them all on the outside), but his future in college is as a tackle.

An interesting, and somewhat expected, observation from Power on Thompson was about his weight. Power said that the left tackle of the future in Columbia probably weighs 265 pounds right now, something that will need to change once he gets to school.

A positive takeaway from a lighter-weight Thompson is this: if at 265 pounds, he can win the Mr. Football award for the state of South Carolina, he can be the top lineman performer at the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas, and he can be a clear standout at the All-American Bowl, what might he be capable of at 290 or 300 pounds?

Thompson's frame suggests that he can carry some more weight without losing his elite athleticism. Adding some more mass will allow him to hold up better in the SEC and (hopefully) avoid injury.

Fred "JayR" Johnson does not appear to be available for the event as he is not listed on the current roster for either Team East or Team West. South Carolina football target Daniel Hill (4-star running back who is set to announce his commitment to USC, Alabama, Tennessee, or Mississippi State at the game) is participating in San Antonio.

The All-American Bowl will take place on Saturday, January 6th. The game will be played at 1:00 and will be broadcast on NBC and Peacock.

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