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April 24, 2007

North Augusta WR drawing interest

North Augusta (SC) wide receiver Marcus Thurmond has become the next big prospect for the Yellow Jackets, who for the past several years have made their regular contributions to DI football. Thurmond, a 6-1, 175lbs speedster, has been attracting attention from several big programs and had one recruiter on campus Monday to check in.

University of South Carolina assistant Robert Gillespie stopped by North Augusta on Monday to check on speedy WR Marcus Thurmond (6-1, 175).

"Like everybody else, South Carolina loves his speed, it just jumps out at you on film," North Augusta coach Dan Pippin said. "They just want to study him up-close at (USC) camp this summer before they make a scholarship decision. But they really like his speed."

Virginia and Troy State also called about Thurmond on Monday. He has no offers, but has been told he is under consideration for a scholarship from UGA, Clemson, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Troy State and USC, among others. He participated in the Nike Camp in Athens last Saturday.

"Marcus can run with anybody who plays the game on Friday nights," Pippin said. "Yes, he is still very raw, but he's a hard worker and the rest of his game will come around. However, he has something you can't coach: big-time speed."

Thurmond traveled to spring games at FSU, Clemson, South Carolina and Tennessee. He said coaches keep teasing him about his speed, starting with Clemson WR coach Dabo Swinney: "He kept introducing me to other people saying 'Have you met the state's fastest player?' It was funny.

Thurmond earned his reputation for speed after running track as a sophomore only to stay in football shape. He ended finishing third in the 800 at the Class AAAA state championship meet with a time of 1:55, which is around two seconds off the state record. He is undefeated so far this year in the 800, winning the event in Thursday's region meet.

This past season, Thurmond caught 46 passes for 546 yards and 6 TD for 1-10 North Augusta.



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