SAN ANTONIO -- It's been a long and interesting ride for Darlington, S.C. cornerback Victor Hampton. From an early commitment to Florida to a change of high schools, Hampton has had many ups and downs throughout the 2010 recruiting year. However, after committing to South Carolina live on national television at the U.S. Army All American Bowl, it's now time to look forward.
"It was the best place for me to feel like myself for the next four years," Hampton said. "I felt most comfortable there."
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"I found out some things academic-wise that I wanted to know," said Hampton of an official visit he took to Columbia to watch the Gamecocks host the Florida Gators back in November. "The way they run the system with tutors and the people involved with them, how they treat the players. The people that run the system impressed me."
Hampton was impressed enough to eventually choose the Gamecocks over Tennessee, North Carolina and others. The nation's No. 22 cornerback, who had originally committed to the Gators back in the Spring but de-committed during the summer, hit it off with South Carolina defensive backs coach Lorenzo Ward on his trip.
"He's an experienced guy," he said of Ward. "He told me the truth. I've got to come work, and if I can show him that I can play then I would play."
Hampton played his junior season for North Carolina powerhouse Charlotte Independence High School but transferred to Darlington for his senior year.
"I needed a change of atmosphere and to get out of North Carolina to make a new start," he said. "It has been great for me and it really helped me get back on track."