Clowney is expected to make a quick contribution on South Carolina's front line, which lost starting defensive end Cliff Matthews.
"I plan to make plays, lots of them," Clowney said.
His South Pointe coach, Bobby Carroll, has called Clowney unblockable, blessed with a quick first step and an unceasing motor that allows him to chase down players other ends give up on. Carroll remembers when he often had to keep his star defender on the sideline at practice so the rest of the team could execute plays without Clowney stopping them cold.
"When he says, 'Hey, I'm not the big fish in the small pond but the fish in the big pond,' he'll pull his weight and only get better," Carroll said.
Both Clowney and Carroll say the player will qualify academically at South Carolina. Spurrier added that Clowney is much better off grade-wise than some of the Gamecocks other signees.
Clowney won South Carolina's "Mr. Football" award given to the state's top senior. It's the third straight season the Gamecocks have signed that honoree after Gilmore in 2008 and running back Marcus Lattimore of Byrnes High in 2009.
Clowney had 162 tackles and 29½ sacks, caused 11 fumbles and scored five defensive touchdowns this season. The Stallions also put him in the backfield and he had 20 carries for 274 yards and nine TDs.
South Pointe went 38-6 during Clowney's three varsity seasons, winning one state title in Class 4A Division II in 2008.
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