Wanted to empty the recruiting notebook and get a visitor list up for this Saturday. This is just a tentative list but I've tried to include only recruits who have confirmed they are visiting.
- DB Help On The Way?? Certainly there is an increasing need to recruit and build depth at DB for next year, both CB and Safety, and the most likely game changing CB on the board is MacKensie Alexander. Venables is not satisfied with the current play of our DB's, particularly their hip flexibility. Alexander recently said that Notre Dame could be his slight favorite right now and even mentioned Boise State being in the mix. He has actually visited Notre Dame so they are a real possibility but what is good news for Clemson is that Florida State seems to be out of the running after pulling the offer for Alexander's twin brother. Clemson is hanging in their but needs an official visit.
- Other DB Notes / It also sounds like Safety Marcell Harris is seriously considering visiting and the staff is pushing hard for this top 50 player but no timeline yet. We have cooled on Juwaan Williams who a couple weeks back I said was the most likely candidate to fill that final DB slot. He has been mainly recruited as a WR by other schools and has stated that preference. My feeling is that we are focusing on some guys that fit Venables desire for his CB's and are now higher on the board. All indications are that Tramel Terry of Goose Creek is still firmly committed to Georgia as a WR. I'm sure we are trying to sell him on CB being his best bet to reach the NFL. One to keep your eyes on, especially if Georgia has a middling season. There may be some thought to signing him as a WR/RB athlete, with the possibility of moving to D as our position with North becomes less solid. He has a great relationship with Coach Elliott working in our favor.
- Montravious Adams is visiting this week with his Mom! This is a big development because his Mom has only been to Auburn previously. I know everyone thinks Auburn leads but I am still feeling good about Adams. He had a great visit over the summer, we beat Auburn and now we have the Mom on campus. If the visit goes well then all the pieces are in place to land him come signing day.
- It doesn't hurt that we will have the Grayson Trio on campus this week as well. An ESPN the magazine article just came out where Nkemdiche's Mother says she is not in favor of Clemson. Also in the article Robert says he is solid and coming to Clemson. I will be worried if Robert actually takes an official visit to somewhere other than Ole Miss or a West Coast school.
- Very good to see that DeShaun Watson is visiting and hopefully bringing some high profile GA players with him in Kitt and Glass. He is now 'looking around' just in case but really that means that he is solid to Clemson as long as Chad Morris stays in Clemson. I think that is totally understandable, 'All In' should work both ways.
Committed Tigers (2013)
Robert Nkemdiche, DE, Grayson
Ryan Jenkins, WR, Lassiter
Wayne Gallman, RB, Grayson
David Kamara, CB, Grayson
Ben Boulware, LB, TL Hanna (recently named to UA All-American game)
DJ Greenlee LB, Daniel
Jae'lon Oglesby RB, Daniel
Cannon Smith TE Heathwood Hall
DeShaun Watson QB, Gainesville GA
Montravious Adams DT, Vienna GA
Jonathan Howard WR, Wilcox, GA
Jeff Blazevich TE, Charlotte Christian, NC
Elijah Hood RB, Charlotte Catholic, NC
Demarre Kitt WR, Sandy Creek, GA (with the slight possibility of Georgia commit Nick Glass)
Kwamelle Barnes DE, Saluda
Andrew Williams DE, Eagle’s Landing Christian, GA
Christian Miller LB, Spring Valley
Quaven Ferguson DT, Easley
CJ Fuller, ATH/RB, Easley
Taylor Hearn T Williston-Elko
Robert Dinkins DT, Olympic, NC (NC commit but high on Clemson during Summer camp)
*Donnell Stanley G/T of Latta SC will visit the Coots this weekend
I can't resist putting together a list of five insights from Auburn's game that I took away. I am out of my depth putting this up so read at your own discretion...
1. Slippery When Boyd--What a monumental difference losing that bad weight has made for Boyd. He looked completely different in the pocket. I was ecstatic and shocked by his mobility. There were three or four times where he got away from a defender and I thought he was getting sacked each time. Last year he would have been sacked at least 8 times in this game. What a revelation. Tajh Boyd looks like a Championship caliber QB and way ahead of where he was last year running the ball (still needs to improve reading defenses, but I was floored at how nimble he looked). Keep the pounds off!!
2. Kick-offs Are Now Stupid--Thanks NCAA for destroying the kickoff this year. We have never been particularly great at defending kicks so I am not too torn up but kick-off coverage teams just became close to meaningless. It means that Teek, Steward and others don't get a chance to contribute (and reduces the need to burn redshirts for special teams). Any marginal kicker can now put it in the endzone. I know the NCAA and NFL are scared out of their minds by concussions but this is too much. I'm wondering how much of an advantage and boost to offensive numbers will come from always starting at the 25. The other genius move is making it beneficial to rip a helmet off another player.
3. Pinion and Punting--I have never been a huge fan of Benton punting. He isn't a disaster by any stretch but you should never be satisfied with 30-35 yard punts. Pinion is the future and if he is going to be used this year then he needs to see game time before FSU. Got to make that decision. Obviously I'm not in practice and being nitpicking but this smells to me like loyalty to Benton and I want that big game changing leg in the game. From Dabo's comments yesterday though, we will hopefully see Pinion. I am sure that Pinion is a little less consistent at this point but if the gap isn't huge then go with Pinion.
4. Not Shooting Blanks--I was impressed by the play of Travis Blanks. I would like to see him take more snaps from Christian if Christian can not do a better job of getting off blocks and tackling better. Got to find a way to get Teek on the field in the next two games.
5. Loose or Tight Ends--Brandon Ford had a mixed bag type of game. Made some good catches and had a great block that leveled #25 but dropped critical passes. Cooper let a marginal throw turn into an interception. This was supposed to be a position of strength and we will need Ford to maintain his confidence as well as finding some quality depth moving towards next year.