It wasn't the surprise commitment that people seem to enjoy in recruiting, but it's a commitment that the Gamecocks have to be ecstatic about. 

Four-star offensive lineman Donell Stanley made his verbal commitment to South Carolina Friday afternoon at a ceremony at his high school in Latta, South Carolina. 

Stanley chose South Carolina over Clemson, his other finalist. Some of the other schools to offer were Alabama, North Carolina, Southern Cal, Virginia Tech, LSU, Florida and more. 

This is a very nice commitment for the Gamecocks as it helps put a player like Stanley in a position to have playing time early in his career at South Carolina. The Gamecocks have a need for a guard in the near future with AJ Cann and Ronald Patrick both being elder statesman on the offensive line. Stanley should be able to move into a role there early in his career when those players move on in the near future. 

A lot of credit should go to Shawn Elliott, the Gamecocks offensive line coach, in landing Stanley this afternoon. Elliott built a rapport with Stanley early on and it was clear that Stanley favored the Gamecocks for a long period of time. His coaching style should be able to get the most out of Stanley when he enrolls at South Carolina in 2014. 

Not only is Stanley a good player, he's a good person too. He's a young man of high quality and character and will go about being the perfect model student-athlete that South Carolina has had a lot of success with in recent years. It's players like Stanley who have really turned the fortunes around for the Gamecocks. 

With Stanley's commitment, the Gamecocks now have 13 commitments in the 2014 recruiting class. 

Welcome to the Gamecock family Donell!