The quarterback position is one that Gamecocks fans figured would come easy when Steve Spurrier took over as the South Carolina head coach after the 2004 season.
It hasn't been that easy.
The Gamecocks biggest quarterback recruit in the Steve Spurrier era was the embattled Stephen Garcia. He was a big QB recruit in the 2007 class but we all know what happened there.
Other names to grace the quarterback position under Steve Spurrier are Reid McCollum, Aramis Hillary, Chris Smelley, Tommy Beecher, Antonio Heffner.....
This is not the biggest list of who's who when it comes to quarterback recruiting.
So what's the problem?
It appears this problem was solved when quarterbacks coach GA Mangus was brought in during the 2009 season. David Reaves was the previous quarterbacks coach and his recruiting is certainly not up to par with what Mangus has been able to do.
Here's a few names that Mangus has recruited: Connor Shaw, Tanner McEvoy and Brendan Nosovitch.
There is something different with this group of quarterback recruits then what we've seen in the past. These young men are hard workers. They have football on the brain 24/7 and they just "fit" with the personality of this team. McEvoy hasn't taken a snap and Nosovitch will make it campus this summer but one can look at the success of Connor Shaw this past season and see we are headed in the right track when it comes to quarterback recruiting.
Shaw took over as the full-time starter midseason and blossomed in this role playing some of his best football against two of the toughest teams on the schedule in Clemson and Nebraska. You can just see that the word "quarterback" fits Connor Shaw to a T.
This is what happens when you recruit the right person at the quarterback position.
South Carolina will head in the 2013 recruiting class with plenty of momentum. An 11-win season coming off an SEC East division title is a pretty big deal. Another top 20 recruiting class and a more visible football program brings your product into the homes of the better players across the country.
Just don't expect the coaching staff to throw out offers to quarterback recruits.
This is where the waiting game comes in for QB recruits and the Gamecocks.
This seems to be the one position that is under extreme evaluation by GA Mangus and Steve Spurrier. They are looking for the right player to focus on and will do their due diligence in selecting the right person.
So far the Gamecocks have issued one offer to a QB recruit: Christian Hackenberg. This young man has seen his recruiting profile increase and recently added offers from Florida, South Florida, Penn State and Miami. He's got all the attributes that the Gamecocks are looking for in a quarterback these days. He's a smart student with a 3.74 GPA. He's got a strong arm and the size to handle everything at the next level. South Carolina would love to bring his talents to play under Steve Spurrier.
There's another QB recruit out there by the name of Boeing Brown. Brown is from Connecticut but has openly professed his love of the Gamecocks. There hasn't been an offer thrown his way but it seems like if the Gamecocks decide to give Brown one that he'll commit on the spot. Coach GA Mangus is the recruiter of record here and continues to stay in touch with Brown as much as possible. He's helped keep Brown in the loop on what is going on with the Gamecocks quarterback recruiting.
There will probably be other names that come up along the way but right now the Gamecocks are being patient. They will have plenty of time to evaluate and make the best selection for them in this upcoming recruiting class. It's good that this staff feels better about recruiting this position the right way. They are looking for the right fit for this team and won't go around handing offers to every big-time recruit at the QB position.
GA Mangus has relentless recruiting ability and he won't stop until he has his quarterback of choice. This is why these recruits will have to show some patience. Sometimes recruits don't understand that and they feel like they are being "slighted" when they don't get an offer right away. This is not the way South Carolina recruits this position.
The quarterback is the leader of the team. They are the force behind what makes an offense click. I would think you would want to take your time when recruiting such an important role on a football team.
So, when it comes to quarterback recruiting, there could be the "waiting game" being playing here.
And that's okay