Its becoming the 4th Quarter of recruiting. - Grant Halverson
So as we all have seen by now David Kamara has indeed de-committed. This is obviously not a positive move in Clemson's attempt to land Robert Nkemdiche. When Kamara went to visit Ole Miss this past weekend with Robert, we thought this would probably happen. Robert wants to play with his friends and Kamara has always been very close to Robert. Wayne Gallman is still extremely committed and this must be a very tough turn of events for him but it is refreshing to see him handling the situation so well.
Kamara is officially de-committing so that he can look around. This isn't entirely unexpected. Teams like LSU and Florida are trying to get in to the mix now but Kamara isn't closing the door on signing with the Tigers. He feels like he still has a committable offer from the Clemson coaching staff as well. One thing is certain--Coach Conn likes his players to commit and stay committed so this is not what the fine people at Grayson wanted to see transpire. The entire Grayson community is deeply tied to this team so this can't be going over well at home.
Multiple camps of thought on the de-committment. One is that this is the end for Clemson and Nkemdiche/Kamara. Robert is making friends at Ole Miss and now would have David so the path towards Ole Miss is set (you could potentially throw in Ryan Carter, another Grayson teammate with an Ole Miss offer). Again, a lot more to this story than can be made public at this time. Another says that Robert will still sign with Clemson come signing day (so will David) and that the staff still has a plan in place to make that happen. Clemson could also double down and offer DB Ryan Carter of Grayson and go for broke but probably won't do that unless there is some confirmation of Nkemdiche signing.
Am I still optimistic that we will sign Robert and Kamara? No. Last week I was still of the opinion that Clemson was on the inside track to signing Nkemdiche. Right now I would say that path has become muddled and the likelihood of the signing is diminishing. However, like I posted before, Clemson fans need to wear their big boy pants and get used to these kinds of roller-coasters when you are recruiting the best players in the nation. This situation is still in flux and could turn towards us but it doesn't help to have fans publicly moaning and groaning at every turn (and as I will get to, with Carvell this perception is being used against us already). Let me now add to the negativity by saying that Elijah Daniel is visiting Ole Miss next week and Mississippi State this week (his other official was to Marshall and he has visited unofficially Indiana). He will be a tough prospect to hold on to, as we expected when he initially committed. He says to the staff that he is committed but tells other people other things. Tough to know how much longer he stays committed, unless we can get him back on campus.
So do we have any good news? Any way to stem the negative recruiting tide?
Well despite the sideshow, Clemson had one of the best official visit recruiting days of recent memory. WR DeMarcus 'Bud' Robinson has gone from a soft commit to a solid verbal who will enroll early. He is no longer considering Notre Dame or Florida. He is the future of our receiving corp and will be a contributor next season. My favorite offensive player this cycle and I am very glad we have held on to him.
Next big news is that DT Montravious Adams (6'3', Vienna GA), a consensus top ten recruit and on the top of every programs wishlist had another great visit to Clemson. We always said that Mom would be a huge factor here and we needed to get her on campus. That has now happened and Swinney spent a good deal of time talking to her. That is nothing but good news. Georgia is making a late push for the services of MA so this will probably be a Clemson, Auburn, Georgia battle up until signing day.
Tramel Terry (Goose Creek SC, WR/RB/CB) visited Clemson once again (and recently tweeted 'We Too Deep'--the Clemson song from DRob and Martin 'Yoda' Jenkins) and will make his decision very soon because he is enrolling early. He is still committed to GA but it would feel so good to steer him away. GA felt like he was solid after his visit with the Dawgs the week prior but our coaches feel good about Terry too. Another GA/Clemson battle going down to the wire. Clemson has told him we'll let him try offense first. In the end, we think he becomes a pretty solid CB. If I'm a Dawg fan, I am seriously sweating on this one.
MacKensie Alexander (CB, 5'10', FL) made an official visit to Clemson as well. He is the hardest recruit to read this cycle so it is anyone's guess where he ends up. But I have said don't get your hopes up until he visits. Well it is time to get your hopes up. He is arguably the number one corner in this class. He is a cover corner who could start from day one and play some serious press man coverage. He could change our secondary--he is that good. He does his homework and knows what he wants in a defense and he wants early playing time.The man is confident and calls it like he sees it (he knows how many Pass Interference calls our DB's had in the first six games, for example).
Clemson is a childhood favorite and Alexander also knows Sammy from his days playing against him in high school. He knows he would be practicing against great WR's every day. We are a legit threat to land him. Our competition is tough to gauge (it changes often). He took an official to Texas A&M the previous week and seemed to have them on top after that visit. They are an attractive school right now. Alabama is in the mix, but can't offer immediate playing time, as are Notre Dame and FSU. We will continue to follow the visits but Alexander had a great time on his visit and we will be in this all the way.
We are getting an official visit from the #1 player in New York, DE/OLB Ebenezer Ogundeko (6'3, 230). He will visit for the South Carolina game and now has a committable offer from the Tigers. He has taken an official to Arizona St and will visit Florida this week. Ole Miss and Notre Dame are also potential destinations for official visits. My thinking is that he could be a potential back-up plan for Elijah Daniel who continues to say he is committed to Clemson (but also talks to other coaches about said commitment in a less than firm manner).
The biggest news is that we are making a run at DE Carl Lawson (6'2" 250) who is arguably the number 2 recruit in the nation from Alpharetta, GA. He has long been committed to Auburn but with Nkemdiche de-committing Clemson will try to get Lawson on campus in the next two weeks. Lawson has said he is focusing on his team right now and not worrying about recruiting. He was the most impressive DE during the summer workouts (Nkemdiche didn't participate much so I am not counting him). Powerful player who plays with a serious mean streak.
Look out for FSU commit CB Adrian Baker (6'1, 170, Hollywood FL) to potentially visit in January. If you remember he announced a commitment to FSU on his Twitter account, only to have coaches say they hadn't accepted the commitment. Ultimately with the negative media, FSU accepted the his commitment (it wasn't the first time he tried to commit). He likes Clemson a lot but he grew up and FSU fan. The question is whether or not FSU is encouraging him to take visits. He would be a solid pick-up for our secondary.
Lastly, we are hearing rumblings that I may have written off the recruitment of OL Josh Outlaw who de-committed from Florida earlier in the year. We hear he's a Hargrave placement initially. Clemson is still there with Tyrone Crowder and we think Clemson lands him. It would be great to try and land three O-lineman.
As always, ask any questions you may have in the comments and I will try to respond!!