Jake Bentley is a four-star 2017 quarterback who committed to South Carolina late last month. On Wednesday, however, Bentley took to Twitter to announce that he will be graduating from high school in May of this year and enrolling at USC this coming summer.
— Jake Bentley (@JakeBentley19) April 6, 2016
Bentley’s father, Bobby Bentley, is an assistant coach on Muschamp’s Gamecocks coaching staff, following the new head coach from Auburn. Had the younger Bentley decided to remain in Opelika (Ala.) for his senior season of high school, that would’ve split up his family, something he didn’t want to do. He also didn’t want to move to South Carolina and enroll in another high school for one year.
Thus, his decision to reclassify, graduate high school a year early and getting a jumpstart on his collegiate career.
“It’s been a long process getting approval from the SEC and the NCAA and South Carolina. It’s been kind of a long deal, but we got confirmation about a week ago, and everything’s good,” Bentley explained to The State after his decision was made public. “In South Carolina I took a lot of high school courses in middle school so I was able to acquire a lot more course credits than the normal student.”
Even as Bentley is eligible to play immediately in 2016, there’s a nearly 100-percent chance he takes a redshirt for his true freshman season.
Rivals.com rates Bentley as the No. 13 pro-style quarterback in the country, while 247Sports.com has him as the No. 6. Regardless, he’s the highest-rated quarterback ever signed by the Gamecocks.