Offensive Tackle 2018 prospect Jordan McFadden has decided to de-commit from the Virginia Tech Hokies and commit to the Clemson Tigers. The long drought, the lack of commitments is over. McFadden becomes the 12th member of the Clemson recruiting class.
McFadden comes from down the road to Clemson at Dorman High School, which has produced many Clemson players over the years. Jordan is ranked as a composite 3* player and 920 overall. That is way too low to me and he should probably be in the top 500, if not higher. He is the kind of prospect that VT recruits who is undervalued, but beats their ranking when all is said and done. VT was not happy when we locked in on McFadden—they knew they had a good player and fought to keep him. It is a credit to McFadden’s talent that VT continued to battle.
Clemson thought they would be able to flip McFadden months ago, but needed to bring him on an official visit and fight for his commitment all the way up to the in-home visit. Since the time that McFadden was officially offered by Clemson I have maintained that it was just a matter of time, but that time kept extending beyond what I thought was going to happen. This was a long process where Clemson needed to stay patient. Virginia Tech did not make this an easy commitment at all.
Clemson, however, was in the drivers seat after offering. Clemson wanted to swing for the fences with prospects like Trey Hill and Salyer (Clemson continues this process with OT Jackson Carman on campus for an official visit this weekend). But McFadden was always on Clemson’s radar and someone they felt was worthy of an offer. Clemson coaches just felt restricted by the numbers in this years class. Ultimately the appeal to stay home and compete at the highest level won him over.
WHAT THEY GET
Clemson is looking to just take two offensive lineman in this class, three if there is room (I think this is a mistake and three should be the minimum, especially if Hearn is set on leaving early). Clemson prioritized taking offensive tackles after missing on 5* types of targets. McFadden reminds me a lot of another Dorman High School offensive lineman who was eventually drafted by the 49ers, Brandon Thomas.
McFadden’s strength, much like Thomas, is his athleticism. McFadden has the measurables you are looking for at Tackle for a player who is undervalued. He is 6’4 with long arms. He already weighs 290 pounds and can get to 300 as he adds more strength. His feet are really good. He is able to move in space and pull from the Tackle position. He moves well in space and can run and block down the field. He plays with a decent motor. I think he can stick at Tackle at Clemson, but could always move inside as well (this continues Clemson’s process of recruiting versatile players on the line and if they can’t stick at tackle then you add more mass and move them inside).
Jordan is going to need to add some more strength to his upper body. He will need some time in college to acclimate and increase his technique, particularly his pass protection and steps.
Jordan McFadden probably won’t see a big bump in his recruiting rankings because a knee injury in his final game is keeping him out of the Shrine Bowl. Jordan was supposed to have an MRI on the knee on Friday, but no word on the severity of the injury (it was thought to be an MCL injury or something that would require a few months to heal, but nothing that would jeopardize his ability to play next year or even in the summer). McFadden is set to sign on the 20th and enroll in the summer. He is a redshirt candidate with his summer enrollment, but if we only take two tackles he will likely see the field sooner than later.