People often say that offensive linemen are the most critical but under-appreciated positions on a football team. This is undoubtedly true, but compared to a long snapper the offensive line is made up of five Tom Bradys. South Alabama has enjoyed solid play at this essential position since the program started and, with the commitment of Carson Sharp, that looks like it will continue.
Carson, a 6-4, 240lb athlete, is rated as a four-star prospect by the prestigious Kohl's Professional Kicking Camps and is ranked the top long snapper in the southeast by Team Jackson Kicking. Sharp's contributions are not just as a football special teamer as he was all-region at tight end as well as being the region MVP in basketball in 2011 for Gulf Breeze High School. Along with the great relationship he has established with the USA coaches, it was Gulf Breeze's proximity to Mobile, Alabama that helped sway him to commit to the Jags.
"South Alabama is only about an hour away from home," said Sharp. "We took a visit up there not too long ago. My family loved it. I loved it. I think I have a good opportunity to come in there and contribute as a freshman as a deep snapper...or compete for the job a year later."
Sharp gave a preview of what he will provide the program once he arrives in 2014.
"I play hard. I play with passion. I never stop. I love football and I think that helps me excel on the field. Whatever is best for them and best for the team, I'm willing to do it."
He had offers from Troy and Jacksonville State and interest from a long list of schools, including Southern Mississippi and Ole Miss. Despite these other options and the others that may come, Sharp feels that his recruitment is over.
"I'm locked into South Alabama," he said. "I'm a Jag all the way. I'm happy to be a Jag because it's so close to home and I think we're going to get a lot of Sun Belt championships."