ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Kevin Crosby finds motivation in measuring tape.
The Bamberg-Ehrhardt High standout and South Carolina Class of 2014 commitment measured in at 6-foot-1 and 240 pounds this week for the Under Armour All-America Game.
A few more vertical inches and his frame would be considered that of a prototypical tight end. Crosby has heard that his entire playing career.
Thats what everybody says. Thats really why I stuck with playing tight end, Crosby said. Im out to prove everybody these next couple years that you can be 6-1 or 6-2 playing tight end. Its all about your heart and how much you work on your trade.
Crosby put his skills to the test against the nations best this week at Under Armour practices in Orlando. His high school playing days wrapped up Thursday night at the all-star game at Tropicana Field.
He is known as KC by family and friends. In football and recruiting circles, hes known as H, and hes OK with that.
At the tight end-H spot of any given play, Crosby can fill the role of several positions. He can play on the line of scrimmage or be set back closer to the quarterback and running back. He can go in motion, play fullback or line up as a flex tight end in the slot.
Hes not a slot receiver. Hes not a true tight end. And hes not a fullback. So hes an H-back, a hybrid guy, said uncle and Bamberg-Ehrhardt defensive coordinator Corey Crosby.
Corey Crosby helped guide his nephew through the recruiting process the past few years. Clemson, Alabama, Notre Dame and North Carolina were among those who recruited K.C. Crosby as a linebacker. South Carolina, however, recruited him as a tight end throughout, and he committed there in June.
Everybody wants that 6-3, 6-4 type, Corey Crosby said. He can catch the ball well. Hes got long arms and catches the ball like hes 6-3. Hes motivated to prove people that he can play at the next level at 6-1 and still be effective.
K.C. Crosby capped his playing career with 43 catches for 571 yards and 12 touchdowns his senior season.
In Thursday nights Under Armour game, he served mostly in a blocking role and rotated with Georgia tight end commitment Jeb Blazevich. Their squad, Team Nitro, lost 31-21 to Team Highlight, which featured Saluda High defensive tackle and USC target Dexter Wideman.
ESPN considers Crosby a four-star prospect and No. 2 in the nation at the H spot. While Crosby is considered undersized in the traditional sense of tight ends, his strongest traits are his athleticism and flexibility, said Gerry Hamilton, a national recruiting analyst for ESPN.
I think his versatility and being an all-around good player are what his strengths are going to be, Hamilton said.
Crosby and his uncle felt like he held his own in Under Armour practices, matching up at times against top national defensive end prospects DaShawn Hand (Alabama commit) and Chad Thomas (Miami commit). In Thursdays game, he lined up against linebackers and defensive ends.
Facing top competition helps him better understand what he needs to work on in terms of blocking and footwork at the next level, Crosby said. This summer, he will join a South Carolina roster that includes Jerell Adams and Rory Anderson, who are 6-6 and 6-5, respectively.
Crosby said his height wont stop him from working to be the best he can be at tight end.
I think about it every day, Crosby said. Im not the tallest, but Im going to go out and give it all Ive got. Years from now, people will talk about me being this height and still being able to play tight end.