Mason Zandi using D5 roots to lead Gamecocks
Posted on Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016 at 5:02 pm.

CHAPIN- Mason Zandi has always stood out amongst the crowd. At 6-9, 315 it makes perfect sense. You can’t miss him. The Chapin High School alum and fifth-year senior is preparing to lead the Gamecock football team for one final season wearing the garnet and black.zandi

Throughout his career at USC, Zandi has primarily seen action at right tackle, starting there for 10 games last year. This season, he gets the chance to move back to his natural position of left tackle. As one of just three seniors on the team, Zandi is fired up about being one of the vocal leaders heading into the 2016 season. He credits much of his leadership abilities to his experience at Chapin High.

Chapin High head coach Justin Gentry had the opportunity to coach Zandi for his final two seasons and is amazed at how his career has developed with the Gamecocks saying, “Mason was a tremendously athletic young man. He was willing to do whatever it took to help the team. We are all so proud of how far Mason has come as a young man and a football player. We know that he has a great future ahead of him.”

“I am so proud of my time at Chapin High School,” said Zandi. “I will never forget the friendships I made and the lessons I learned at Chapin. Thanks to Coach Gentry, the rest of the staff and my teammates for helping me along the way. I will always be an Eagle.”

Today, Zandi is focused on making an impact on the Gamecocks. “I am really appreciative of Coach Elliott and the new coaching staff how they have helped make me a better player,” Zandi said at USC Media Day. “They have helped me elevate my game to the next level in preparation for my final season here.”

First-year head coach of the Gamecocks Will Muschamp immediately was impressed by Zandi when he took over the team. He was so impressed that he selected Zandi as one of the three players who traveled to SEC Media Days in Birmingham, Alabama. On a team that is filled with so much uncertainty heading into the 2016 season, Muschamp is relieved to know he has Zandi protecting the quarterback’s blind side.

“He’s one of the guys that I can point to and say he has made it easy on us as coaches from a transition point,” Muschamp said. “He’s a really smart guy, a really good athlete. He certainly has the length and the size you’re looking for at that position and he’s a player we’re really counting on to have a good year for us.”