When he stepped on the field as a true freshman, I knew we had a football player, not just a track/fast guy who likes to play football. How he wasn't getting the PT immediately over Xavier Dye and others is still hard to comprehend. He played DB and WR in HS, and played football here, from the very start, with a defensive mentality. He's not afraid of contact at all, fights off DBs, and actually attempts a real block when he's asked to do so. That is rare enough for a good receiver, but he was doing it as a freshman.
As a freshman he wasn't a great player when the ball went away from him. He'd look a little lazy in his routes or blocking assignments when the ball went to the Field side (he's played Boundary side), but over the last 2 years there has been substantial improvement there. Now I'd call him a good blocker, and I think he could be a great blocker eventually.
Nuk played basketball for his first season at Clemson, along with his football duties, so he didn't spend the whole offseason lifting and eating properly as he should've. This stunted his growth a little for the sophomore season, but after that time he's been all-football and put on 10-15 lbs with that offseason going into his junior campaign. Now he's getting bank with the Texans, with only one real offseason of full-time football prep. In an NFL strength training program, this guy could put on another 10-15 lbs easily and become a real force on the boundary.
If Nuk has ever had one weakness I'd say its outright speed. He's football fast, not track fast. He won't run off and leave many guys, but he's quick and gets himself open. Many of our opponents from last season were surprised by his open field speed.
His hands have always been excellent, I could probably count on two hands the number of dropped catchable balls over the last 3 years. Also a rarity for a WR.
Rod Gardner has been one of my favorite Clemson WRs forever, but Nuk Hopkins is also on that list.