South Carolina picked up a huge commitment at a position of need on Monday as four-star JUCO defensive tackle Abu Lamin pledged to the Gamecocks.
"I had a great connection with Coach (Deke) Adams and Coach (Lorenzo) Ward," Lamin explained. "I talked with Coach Adams almost every day. I talked with Coach (Steve) Spurrier, he emphasized how much they need me and want me. It's just been things like that, they haven't stopped coming after me."
The 6-foot-5, 315-pounder is a product of Fayetteville, North Carolina and previously spent a year in Columbia at Gray Military Academy before heading to junior college at Fort Scott Community College in Kansas. The opportunity to play SEC football close to home was a big factor for him.
"It's back in the Carolinas, back at home where I'm from," he said. "The atmosphere is great. I loved it out there when I went out there. Put that all together, the facilities are great and the atmosphere is great. South Carolina is on the uprise."
Lamin, who will enroll at South Carolina next January and have three years to play three, went into detail about the job Adams did recruiting him to Columbia.
"Honestly, Coach Adams is just a real dude. He's the realest," Lamin said. "He really wanted to coach me. He talked with my mother and told me what he could do for me and what I can do for the program and what South Carolina can do academically. When I talk with Coach Adams, it's about that family, the future, graduating. That's what really kept me close with Coach Adams. He cares about football, but he cares about his family. He really cares and wants to me to be a great man."
The big interior lineman believes that he will bring a unique skill set to South Carolina once he becomes a Gamecock.
"I'm confident in my skills. I'm a great pass-rushing defensive tackle. Many 300 pounders don't get the recognition of being a pass-rusher," he said. "I love to definitely hit running backs. That's the most fun thing for me besides hitting the quarterback is hitting the running back. I love shooting gaps and embarrassing o-linemen. I like to wreck stuff."
Lamin is one of the top junior college prospects in the country, having drawn scholarship offers from Alabama (his most recent), Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Nebraska, and Tennessee in addition to South Carolina and numerous others.
Four official visits were made by Lamin, including Florida and South Carolina in June and Arkansas and Nebraska this month.
South Carolina now has 12 verbal commitments in the 2014 recruiting class.