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Clemson Football 2018 National Signing Day Primer

NCAA Football: Sugar Bowl-Alabama vs Clemson Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Ready for round 2? Wednesday sees the start of the “official” National Signing Day. I use quotes because with the new early signing period the first Wednesday in February seems destined to be a bit of an afterthought. But the one thing we will get going forward is excitement.

Clemson has already put together one of the most talented classes top to bottom in the country, but there are still a few wholes in the class. With recent transfers, there is plenty of room for Clemson to add a few more top players. Here are the big, and really only names, to keep an eye on tomorrow. Tony O’Neal announced his commitment to Texas A&M on Monday so he’s no longer an option for Clemson.

Justyn Ross is a familiar name. The 4-star WR from Phoenix City, AL, was once thought to be as much of a lock as anyone can be without committing. But recent work by Alabama has eaten away at Clemson’s lead. From what we’ve seen both sides are pretty confident about Ross committing to them so we’ll have to wait and see what Wednesday brings. Ross will announce on ESPN2 during the 1pm EST hour from his high school.

Richard Gouraige is likely staying close to home, and frankly that’s disappointing. The 4-star OT from Florida would have really solidified Clemson’s OL class. He had a great visit here, but from what we are hearing it looks like Gouraige is going to stay at home. If he does pass on coming to Clemson it will make the OL the one big hole in this recruiting class, and a real problem for the team in future years.

Dax Hollifield is back in the mix after Clemson told him they didn’t have room for him in 2017. Transfers have changed that and Clemson is back in it because Dax has always had an interest in Clemson. Holifield is a 4-star LB from North Carolina and even though Clemson already has a few LBs in the class there will be a lot of open space for LBs after the 2018 season. Getting Dax in this class would be a coup considering his dad is not a big fan of Brent Venables. Virginia Tech and UNC will be the main competition here tomorrow and Dax is set to decide at 11:00am EST at his school.

Patrick Surtain Jr. is the 5-star talent Clemson would love to have. The CB from Florida would be able to compete for immediate playing time and help fill the uncertainty at CB. He had a great time on his visit to Clemson and the Tigers may be a darkhorse, but there is a real chance for Clemson to get a surprise commitment. We’ll find out what happens in the 10am EST hour on ESPNU when he commits

Mario Goodrich is another DB the staff is high on. The 4-star from Lee’s Summit, MO (outside of Kansas City), has seemed to be pretty interested in Clemson. His visit went extremely well and his commitment would help give Clemson more stability in the defensive backfield.

Trevon Flowers is the new name on the board everyone is waiting to hear about. Flowers is a 3-star prospect from Tucker, GA, who has jumped up a lot of boards because of potential. He’s actually a baseball guy and committed to play baseball at Kentucky, but picked up football late in high school. Because of his play in high school a lot of D1 teams expressed interest in his football abilities with the decision apparently coming down to Tennessee and Clemson.

One advantage for Clemson with Flowers is the reciprocated interest from Clemson baseball coach Monte Lee. Flowers understands the powerhouse that is Clemson baseball and this could help secure someone who would be a project at DB, but one with plenty of potential

Finally let’s talk scholarships. Clemson sits at 77 players officially on scholarship. 8 of those 77 are seniors who have exhausted eligibility, putting the 2018 roster at 69. Pat Godfrey is also a senior, but he is a walk on who still has eligibility. If Dabo elected to use the scholarship on another player he could, giving Clemson 68 players. There are also 2 other walkons with scholarships leaving Clemson with 66 players, and David Hood over at TigerNet hinted that there would likely be two more players transferring in the next week or so putting the roster at 64.

The good news, that lets this class get up to 21 which means Clemson has up to 6 spots available on Wednesday. The bad news, the staff wasn’t planning on this and the board isn’t big enough. As you see above Clemson is in the mix for