May 19, 2009

French loved visit

Menomonee Falls (WI) kicker Kyle French is one of the better placekicking prospects in the nation, and several schools have taken notice. The 6-foot-2 prospect took a springtime visit to South Carolina's campus.

French, who had a long punt of 67 yards during his junior campaign, gave his trip to Columbia high marks.

"I got the see the football office and the facilities around it," he said. "The facilities were really nice. I liked the new academic center and walking around the campus."

In fact, French had a very big compliment for South Carolina's campus.

"It was the nicest campus I have ever seen," he said.

Coach Shane Beamer will be coaching special teams this season for the Gamecocks and has French on his radar.

"The last time I talked to him was like a week after my visit or something," he said. "I hope to hear more from them."

A host of schools have shown interest to the standout kicker, and there are a few that have recently jumped in the fray.

"I've been talking to Purdue, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, and Tennessee," French told

French visited several other programs during his spring-time trip.

"I went to Clemson, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Purdue, and Wisconsin."

French has a big-time attraction to USC.

"I didn't get to meet Coach (Steve) Spurrier," he said. "But I believe he is building a championship program with the new facilities and by recruiting the best players. I hope to get back up to Columbia for camp sometime. My interest level is about a 9 out of 10."

The recruiting process is somewhat different for kickers, and French plans to remain patient.

"I would like to get some solid offers soon so that I can commit before my senior season," he said. "I understand it's early for kickers."

French added that he had no leaders, but he knows where South Carolina stands:

"South Carolina would be in my top 3 schools."

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