Stephenson DL Carlos Hood commits to South Carolina

Stephenson High School defensive tackle Carlos Hood, who tried to commit to reigning BCS champion Auburn in early March, pledged to South Carolina on Sunday.

The 6-foot-4, 270-pounder selected the Gamecocks among his 15 scholarship offers, which also included Miami, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, East Carolina and South Florida. Hood had nominal interest from Georgia Tech and UGA.

“I was talking it over with my mother and decided to go ahead and commit to South Carolina,” Hood told the AJC. “They won the SEC East last year, and they have a good defense almost every year. They run a 4-3 (scheme) that is a good fit for me. South Carolina is not far from home, so my friends and family will get to see me play. I like South Carolina, and South Carolina likes me. There was no reason to wait any longer.

Hood knows all about the waiting game in recruiting. He confirmed to the AJC he was ready to commit to Auburn “around a month and half ago” before a strange turn of events.

Hood had been offered an early scholarship at Auburn by assistant Tracy Rocker, who left in mid-February for a similar position as defensive line coach with the NFL’s Tennessee Titans. While Auburn was searching for Rocker’s replacement, Hood made an unofficial visit to Auburn, liked what he saw, met with coach Gene Chizik and was ready to commit.

“Coach Chizik was excited about me wanting to commit, but told me to hold off until they had a new defensive line coach,” Hood said. “I think they wanted to give the new guy a chance to look at my film and talk over a few things with me.”

That’s when things began to get a little confusing. After Mike Pelton was hired as Rocker’s replacement in early March, Hood immediately called Auburn to confirm another unofficial visit, this time wanting to bring his mother along to officially commit in person to Chizik and his new assistant.

“Carlos was ready to get it over with; I called the cell number of every Auburn coach I had and we didn’t hear right back from them, like we usually do,” Stephenson assistant Corey Johnson said.

“I waited and waited and … nothing; I took that to mean they didn’t want me any longer,” Hood said. “It was disappointing and discouraging.”

Hood said he learned within the last few weeks that Auburn’s coaches wanted to re-evaluate him in person at the team’s prospect camp later this spring before having further discussion on the possibility of committing. “It was disappointing because I had a scholarship offer, and then it was like they wanted me to try out for the scholarship again,” Hood said. “I didn’t feel comfortable with the situation anymore.”

It forced Hood to look closer at the other schools that had been recruiting him, leading to Sunday’s commitment to South Carolina. “It all worked out for the best in the end; there are no hard feelings with Auburn,” Hood said. “South Carolina is the right place for me. I’m happy.”

Hood is the third member of the “Stephenson 14″ to commit, joining tailback Mike Davis and defensive tackle Jafar Mann — both headed to Florida. The DeKalb school has 14 rising seniors that have been offered football scholarships by major colleges.

“Carlos is just as good as Jafar; he’s an unselfish player who does all the dirty work by taking on blockers to let the linebackers make the tackles,” Johnson said. “South Carolina is getting an outstanding player.”


  • Louisville coach Rick Pitino visits with ex-Tennessee basketball recruit (click here)
  • UGA 5-star football recruit Isaiah Crowell gets rockstar status at G-Day (click here)
  • Tennessee flirts with DB committed to Virginia Tech (click here)
  • Who is Georgia’s No. 1 college football prospect? It might be … a sophomore (click here)
  • UGA football recruit Ray Drew will be two-sport athlete for Bulldogs (click here)

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

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Follow me on Twitter @RecruitingAJC

41 comments Add your comment


April 17th, 2011
11:54 pm

Just imagine the shock of Hood and the Stephenson coaches if South Carolina yanks his offer in January like they did to two this year. Don’t be bitter at Auburn for a change in staff, if he really wanted to go to Auburn he should have committed before Rocker left.


April 18th, 2011
12:10 am

With Auburn’s NCAA investigation, Felon4, HBO4, and now the John Jenkins “offer” getting hot down there, the kid will most likely be thanking God for unanswered prayers in due time. Things have a way of working out. Maybe he needed a handler. (g)


April 18th, 2011
12:17 am

Welcome to USC Carlos.

Recruiting can be dirty the AU coaches would return his call until they didn’t want him anymore than he couldn’t get in touch with the coaches.

I called the cell number of every Auburn coach I had and we didn’t hear right back from them, like we usually do,” Stephenson assistant Corey Johnson said.


April 18th, 2011
12:21 am

Hey, “ThingsWorkOut” and all of you other Auburn haters… There is no evidence that Auburn has done anything wrong in the last decade, so get over it. Although the baseless press reports and rumors are good discussion fodder, there’s no truth to any of this garbage. Get over it and bow down to the National Champs!


April 18th, 2011
12:40 am

South Carolina did not yank scholarships, the 2 guys did not qualify…big difference

C Hammah

April 18th, 2011
1:04 am


ATL Sports Fan

April 18th, 2011
1:08 am

I hope some of the band wagon UGA fans read this article. This why Mark Richt and his staff will watch film and have the kid come to their camp if they think he maybe a borderline prospect before offering them a scholarship. The last thing you want to happen is to offer a kid a scholarship then put it on hold to only to wishy washy.


April 18th, 2011
2:55 am

There was a coaching change in the middle of the prospects recruiting at Auburn. The psition coach (Rocker) saw something he liked and offered. Rocker left without the commit. When the recruit became interested in Auburn, Coach Chizik told him to wait for a hire in that DL coach position. When Pelton was hired, the interest in the recruit changed. The recruit was not a slam dunk that could name any school he wanted to play for. If Auburn thinks they can do better, good for them. The kid seems happy, s Carolina seems happy, and Auburn seems Ok with everything.

Dekalb coach

April 18th, 2011
6:42 am

Here is what this article didn’t say. Auburn DESTROYED its relationship with Stephenson high school with the way they botched this one up. All they had to do was call the kid and say they needed more time for Pelton to review the D-Line prospects. ANY type of communication. But no, they ignore Hood and Stephenson’s coaches for a month.

MARK IT DOWN …. Auburn won’t get any of the Stephenson kids this year, next year, year after that etc. Complete lack of communication.

Kudos to Carlos for moving forward with USC!


April 18th, 2011
7:25 am

Where there is smoke there is fire and the NCAA can’t keep seeing Auburn popping up in every scandal and sit by idly and do nothing. I think it is safe to say it is merely a matter of time before they will be on major sanctions with the NCAA. Guess we will see.

As for Hood, congratulations! I would think playing next to Clowney would be exciting.

Vick=Dog killing thug

April 18th, 2011
7:53 am

Pretty low class of auburn to not return the phone calls. If you want to hold off, fine but be up front about it.


April 18th, 2011
8:05 am

Great story on Hood. I would say work your tail off at USC and one day when you are playing AU then show them the mistake that they made.


April 18th, 2011
8:09 am

Rob “South Carolina did not yank scholarships, the 2 guys did not qualify…big difference”

Please tell me how they didn’t qualify when both of the kids have not even finished with high school? They are still taking classes and attempting to get better scores on the SAT. South Carolina spread a wide net and cut bait when they realized they offered too many.

Stephenson '09

April 18th, 2011
8:30 am

Auburn shouldn’t even waste their time coming by Stephenson this spring. They have been cut loose from up in here after that stunt and they know it.


April 18th, 2011
8:35 am

Welcome Carlos…USC needs big time DL dude like you…in time you will see that USC was a super great choice…SEC Champions soon buddy….and ignor the nay sayers

Ignor, The Nay Sayer

April 18th, 2011
8:56 am

Look at USC Gamecock’s post above, that’s the intelligence you can display with your University of South Carolina degree.

Listen up

April 18th, 2011
8:57 am

They got beat by the two good teams they played last year.


April 18th, 2011
10:52 am

Congrats, Carlos. You made the right choice, even though the eastern doggies would have be ok also. The University of Eastern Alabama is currently having an identity crisis and are in a bit of a turmoil for a team that just backed into a national championship. Just kneel down and thank the Man upstairs that you landed on you feet. The barner aggregate was not the place for you. Good luck.


April 18th, 2011
11:02 am

Buying a national championship is the fastest way to winning!! The whole country knows what happened and the truth will eventually come out.

And on the education front, does Auburn have a single major in the Top 10 nationally? USC’s International Business Program has been Top 5 in nation for the last decade and Top 20 in the world. Put your gloves back on, get on the back of that Garbage truck, and finish your shift. And after you’re done, read about the literacy level in Alabama.


April 18th, 2011
11:13 am

Ignor, I assume based on your post that you have never made an honest mistake in your life? I can honestly say that the degree from USC that hangs on my office wall is more important than anything else I own as the education and experience I had in Columbia was the best of my life. To the folks who are still harping about the 2 scholarships USC “pulled” this year, Yes our coaches did offer too many. Yes they made a mistake in that aspect when they had more commit than they expected. But that does not change the fact that these 2 guys still were not going to qualify (Understood they have not graduated yet, but based on transcripts from there first 3 1/2 years they were not expected to qualify) and they would not have been eligible to enroll at USC. We had a plan in place for both, and both were notified, Mauldin even said he was despite Chips article subtly bashing USC. Say what you want, the majority of SEC and ACC fans out there who dislike and trash USC do so because they are scared. They are used to stomping all over our program (I know, we have no history, have been owned by our rival for years and have not accomplished much since 1969) but now, things have changed. USC is in the drivers seat with the talent, the facilities, the coaches and the support to be a legitimate contender and these fans of other schools can not accept it.

Ignor, The Nay Sayer

April 18th, 2011
1:32 pm

Spur, I’m sure the whole SEC is shaking at the thought of the sleeping giant that is USC(l)east football. They traditionally come out of the box strong and ALWAYS struggle at the end of the year when they hit the meat of their schedule. Nothing like beating up on the SC States of the world to pump up your egos. Their state doesn’t produce enough talent to stock one major team much less two. They have to settle for the second-tier kids from beyond their own borders. Congrats on winning the East, hopefully for your own sake the three traditional players in that division will all have epic fails for a season just like last. If that all happens again, maybe your team can make a return trip to Atlanta to once again get their tails kicked.

Spur lover

April 18th, 2011
1:35 pm

Ignor, it’s they’re not their. Stick that next to your Auburn diploma on the wall.


April 18th, 2011
2:05 pm

Spur lover, no he’s right. Their is the correct form to use. Why does he need to use they’re in his statement when he is using the possessive? Guess that Auburn degree is good for something, huh?

Either way you grown men make me laugh. You come on here bashing another university when even your university of choice is foul as well. You talk bad about the kid when he doesn’t choose your school. Are you ever satisfied? This isn’t about you or what school you love. This is about the kid. How bout we just celebrate another kid from our great state earning a scholarship and getting the opportunity to represent the state of GA on the next level?

Not sure about that Spur

April 18th, 2011
2:09 pm

Ignor is the board police. Be careful, I think he’s a sergeant. Ignor has nothing beneficial to add to the conversation, so he adopts the role of typo police. It’s an important job, and allows him to take shots at posters with whom he disagrees, but cannot formulate a rational rebuttal. It’s up to him to point out typographical errors of someone posting on a freaking recruiting board and go on to try an bash an entire university educational system, one that sports many fine programs, including the top ranked international business program in the United States. Not just public schools either, but Wharton, Harvard, Stern, Haas, Darden, you name the program, they rank lower.

So, beware of Ignor’s speed traps. He’s lying in wait, hoping to nail you for typing too fast…


April 18th, 2011
4:55 pm

As always, thanks for the great Georgia Tech coverage. This clearly belongs on the GT page, where I found it.

Congrats to USC on the recruit.


April 18th, 2011
4:58 pm

One of the two commits to USC has now committed to Louisville but STILL can’t accept the scholy because he still hasn’t gotten the test scores he needs! Exactly how long do you expect a university to wait around for a kid to hold up his end of the deal? If we offer and you make the grades, welcome! If we offer and you can’t even set foot on campus, that’s NOT our fault.

GT hulk

April 18th, 2011
5:29 pm

PJ would not want him unless Troy, Elon or Ga. Southern offers.

Wait till next yr...

April 18th, 2011
7:36 pm

If u steal from dream team, does that make u a member of the dream team…


April 19th, 2011
8:50 am

If the school wants to reevaluate the kid, that’s their prerogative. They wouldn’t take your call…welcome to the real world young man. Sorry.

USC Gamecock

April 19th, 2011
10:07 am

I am thrilled he picked USC and soon georgia will regret they did not offer him….but, I am glad…and really, isn’t that what matters?

USC Gamecock

April 19th, 2011
10:19 am

FYI, the “their vs. they’re” thread had to me a joke…”Spur Lover”…you should be ashamed of yourself posing as a GAMEC0CK when you don’t even know the difference between those two terms…you must be a secret georgia dude or clempson guy.


April 19th, 2011
1:14 pm

USC Lamcock

Trivia: When is the last time USC finished the year ranked in the Top Ten?

OneOnOneWith TheGreatOne

April 19th, 2011
4:40 pm

Regardless of what took place Carlos is getting an education in which is parents DOES NOT TO HAVE FOR PLUS IS QUALIFIED! Let’s be clear on that. Secondly, Carlos should compete for some playing time. I think K. Marcus (JJ) another USC commit, should compete for playing time. Don’t be surprised if you see not one but both starting in a few games. I am very proud what is taken place at Stephenson High School. Coach Gartrell & Coach Johnson need to be commended along with the coaching staff for preparing young men not only for football but also the game of “life”. Not every school can say they have put in record numbers of scholarships, hours, and prepartion like these coaches have. Kudos goes out to not only the coaches but also the parents to instill, trust, love, and discipline in these young men and coaching staff. USC you are getting two fine football players with good character!

USC Gamecock

April 20th, 2011
11:08 am

@OneOnOneWithTheGreatOne = you are absolutely correct, USC is getting a couple of terrific kids who are also great football players…BIG TIME Win for USC!!….Let’s go C0CKS!!


April 20th, 2011
5:03 pm

USC Lamecock

Why didn’t you answer my trivia question? When is the last time that the Lamecocks finished the season ranked in the Top Ten?


USC Gamecock

April 21st, 2011
8:48 am

@winwithricht = small fry who does not deserve the time i just gave him… yawn.

Mr. Johnson

April 22nd, 2011
11:00 am

Even with all of them so called D-1 players.. Stephenson STILL won’t beat MLK….


June 14th, 2011
9:12 am

LMAO at his name

[...] Stephenson DL Carlos Hood [...]

[...] DL Carlos Hood (South Carolina) [...]

Jesse Sewell

September 14th, 2011
6:35 pm

Interesting. I know for a fact if one of Spurrier’s coaches made an offer, USC would stand behind that offer come hell or high water. In fact coaches have gotten in hot water with SOS because he told them to wait on an offer and they went ahead. Still SOS would honor it period if the offer was made. Its clearly a matter of integrity with SOS.

AU and Chizik, not so much. But, then again when you recruit kids whose dad is peddling him for cash, integrity is probably not high on your priority list.