Coach Speak: South Carolina commitment Israel Mukuamu

South Carolina DB Group founder ChaChi Sullivan is among the coaches who helped mold the Gamecocks latest commitment.

Sullivan, a former South Carolina State defensive back, first began working with Israel Mukuamu when he was still an underclassman at Berkeley High School in Moncks Corner, S.C.

“He was always a really, really good athlete that could bend,” Sullivan said. “His ability to sink his hips, it’s kind of crazy for a guy with his size.”

Now, a 6-foot-4, 187-pound senior at Parkway High School in Bossier City, La., Mukuamu is one of the top defensive backs in the Class of 2018. He committed to South Carolina on Saturday, a few weeks after de-committing from Florida State.

“Being a 6-foot-4 cornerback is a rarity in and of itself,” Sullivan said. “But his length, I would imagine that his wingspan is closer to 7-feet. He’s got a crazy wingspan, so it’s not just his height. It’s wingspan that’s crazy. I don’t think we’ve seen a player quite like him, because of his range.

“I think a guy who was at Clemson, Jayron Kearse, had a similar makeup, but a totally different skillset. We’ve seen guys with similar makeups, as far as his length and height, but skillset-wise, we have yet to see that. I think it’s going to be fun to watch. It’s going to be fun to see what South Carolina does with him once he’s playing college football.”

Sullivan added, “I think he’s going to be a coverage guy like we’ve never seen. Not that he’ll be a lockdown corner, but he’s going to be a guy they use in coverage differently than a true free safety or a true nickel. I think he’s going to be a guy who we see used very differently.

“I see him projecting more as cover guy than a guy that you’ll put in the box. Typically, guys his size are in the box safeties or free safeties. I think he’s got much more versatility than those types of guys.”

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