All-SEC wide receiver Antwane “Juice” Wells, Jr. was the primary target for Spencer Rattler in 2022. Wells caught 68 passes for 928 yards and six touchdowns in that season while also rushing for one score. However, in 2023, Wells only caught three balls for 37 yards and one touchdown. An injury kept him sidelined for more than ten games on the year. Now, after a post on X last week gave Gamecocks fans hope that Wells would be their number one target again in 2024, he is planning to enter the transfer portal as a grad transfer, as JC Shurburtt of TheBigSpur.com first reported.
The impact that Wells makes on the field is special. He is a top talent and will likely display his ability once again in 2024, just not in Columbia. He is a well-rounded receiver. At 6-1 and 208 pounds, the Richmond, VA native is a crisp route runner with high-level ball skills. He can high-point the ball in 50/50 ball situations as well. But perhaps his greatest strength is his ability to get away from defenders with and without the ball. Wells possesses the speed and shiftiness to be a traditional deep ball threat over the top. However, he has also displayed the ability to make defenders miss in space. He is almost as dangerous catching the ball behind the line of scrimmage as he is streaking down the sideline.
Shane Beamer and the Gamecocks coaching staff will need to bring in more than one receiver in the portal to replace Wells. Evan Stewart is one name that has been connected with South Carolina in the portal already. The former Texas A&M Aggie was the number one rated wide receiver out of high school in 2022. The Gamecocks have also been connected to Florida International Transfer Kris Mitchell, who caught 64 passes for 1118 yards and six touchdowns this year. Nyck Harbor will be back and plans to bring his elite speed and improved ball skills with him. The 6’5”, 241-pound soon-to-be sophomore is one of the fastest players in the country, running in a straight line. Justin Stepp will need to develop him further in order to get the most out of him as the projected WR1 as of Wells’s departure.