Chris Moody signed to play for Steve Spurrier’s South Carolina Gamecocks, but not without some drama. The football star from Henry County High School committed to Vanderbilt in late January but switched to South Carolina after taking a last-minute visit on the final recruiting weekend before signing day.
Moody will play defensive back, along with appearances at quarterback in the Wildcat formation, at South Carolina. He shared his recruiting experiences with the AJC:
What was the funniest thing any coach said to you? “It was [George O’Leary] at Central Florida. He asked me: Are you good with the verbs ‘is’ and ‘are’? I was like sure, you know, I do English. [O’Leary] said ‘Which one of these is correct? Is 3 and 2 … 6? Or are 3 and 2 … 6?’ I was like, ‘Coach, 3 and 2 is 6 [is correct grammar].’ He was like, ‘No, you’re wrong on both because 3 and 2 is … 5.’ He was making a joke. I thought it was funny because most coaches were serious all the time. He was trying to lighten up things because he knows that recruiting can be a heavy burden.”
Which school did you eliminate from consideration almost immediately because of something they said or did? “I would probably say Mississippi State. They didn’t say anything wrong. I just didn’t like the location they were at.”
What school came in second for you? “Vanderbilt. I actually committed to them first and switched to South Carolina.” What could Vanderbilt have done better? “Nothing, really. I liked South Carolina better.”
How did it go telling Vanderbilt you were signing elsewhere? “That was very tough because I had already committed to Vanderbilt. I gave them my word that I was coming and then I changed on them.”
How did Vanderbilt take the news? “I don’t think Coach [James Franklin] took it too nicely. There was his statement in the paper about guys who de-commit were ‘not men of honor,’ so I don’t think he took it too nicely.”
What do you think about playing for Steve Spurrier? “I haven’t played for him yet but people talk about him like he’s a legend.”
More Spurrier: When asked about moving UGA game from the beginning to the middle of the season. Spurrier said “I sort of always liked playing [UGA] that second game because you could always count on them having two or three key players suspended.” What was your reaction to that? “Oh yeah, I saw that. Some Georgia fans were mad about that and talked bad about him. But he’s not as mean as people say he is. It was just a joke. I didn’t think people should take it personal. I thought it was kind of funny.”
What was the biggest recruiting rumor that wasn’t true about you? “I don’t know who started it but I think people stereotyped me by saying I only wanted to play quarterback in college. It wasn’t true because I was willing to play offense or defense, anywhere I could help a team.”
Which coach was it the hardest to tell you weren’t signing with them? “I would have to say South Florida’s [Skip Holtz] because when I went on my official visit, I think I was the only recruit there because it was on a Sunday. All the coaches spent the whole time with me and my family nonstop. When I had to tell them that I wasn’t going there, I felt really bad.”
Which college disappointed you the most during recruiting? “Florida. I always wanted to play at Florida. They had a coach visit our school once. He took my tape, said he would get back to me, and I never heard from Florida again.”
If you were in charge of the NCAA, what’s the one rule you would change with recruiting? “It would probably be communication. They’ve got a lot of rules for when you can communicate and how you can do it. I think coaches should be able to openly recruit and communicate with you more often, and as early as your sophomore year.”
Which non-South Carolina coach was the nicest? “I think [Vanderbilt’s James Franklin] had to be the nicest. He was a genuine nice guy. He always had that smile on his face. Every time he was around you, he was your buddy. He’d sit there and tell jokes. He made it a great environment to be around him.
Which coach was not the nicest? “I wouldn’t say ‘not the nicest’ but [Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen] was pretty straight forward. He didn’t really make any jokes. He kind of told you the situation upfront and kept you on an even keel the whole time.”
WHILE WAITING FOR TONY PARKER’S CEREMONY TO END …
WHILE COUNTING DOWN TO THE NFL DRAFT …
AJC’S INSTANT RECRUITING CLASSICS
– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog
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