Updating the 2019 class heading into the Summer
June figures to be a big month for Clemson recruiting, with many major targets set to be on campus due to Football camps and other visits. Among the visitors yesterday was Tyler Davis, a highly-coveted 4-star DT from Apopka, FL. Davis was only able to visit for around 2 hours due to a tight bus-tour schedule, but Clemson continues to be a prominent figure in his recruitment. This figures to come down to Ohio State and Clemson, and if Clemson wins out it will be largely due to Todd Bates.
In the next week the Tigers will also get 2 of their coveted LB targets back on campus in Vonta Bentley (AL) and Spencer Lytle (CA). There is a strong chance that both end up in the 2019 class at some point. Aside from the benefits they’d bring as players, Bentley’s commitment could continue Clemson’s growing pipeline to Alabama, while Lytle’s could open new doors in California.
Top Cornerback target Andrew Booth visited Auburn this past weekend for their “Big Cat” weekend, and according to sources in Auburn the visit went very well. Auburn has the momentum in this recruitment for a few reasons, although I still see Booth ending up a Clemson Tiger due to the longstanding nature of his relationship with the staff. By nearly all accounts Andrew will visit Clemson again before making a decision. Arguably the most important target in the class, Booth’s recruitment could now possibly go into the Fall, something that would absolutely benefit the Tigers from Death Valley.
Another Commit coming soon?
Tomorrow morning at 10:30am, Cam’Ron Kelly will announce his collegiate decision in front of his friends and family. At this point the recruitment seems to be between Virginia and Clemson. Penn State led for Kelly after his Official Visit in the Spring, and by all accounts Kelly seemed headed to Happy Valley. However, Tyler Rudolph (another Clemson target), and Jaquan Brisker both committed to Penn State in May.
Since then, Cam’ron dragged his feet on a possible commitment, and due to Penn State’s top DB target Lewis Cine taking an official visit in a few days (and possibly committing), Kelly is no longer considered a take for the Nittany Lions. This situation shapes up very well for the Tigers, as in my opinion Kelly may not be as talented as Cine, but he’s a better prospect than Rudolph. If the Tigers are to land the talented player from Virginia, they will be adding another piece to what is already a very talented secondary class.
DeMonte Capehart and the 2020 Class
On Tuesday Clemson started camp season off with a bang when 2020 Defensive Lineman DeMonte Capehart committed. The commitment came as a huge surprise to many, not necessarily because the choice was Clemson, but because it came so early. QT sums up many of my thoughts on DeMonte well in these 2 tweets.
Per @PaulStrelowTI DeMonte Capehart, an instate 2020 Dlineman, has committed to Clemson. He is a definite top 100 player in next years class--I see him as top 50 with a chance of being a 5* player when all is said and done...— QuackingTiger (@QuackingTiger) June 5, 2018
Big commitment for 2020.
He just needs to work on his flexibility and bend a bit more to increase pass rush explosion if he sticks at DE to get to that 5th star. But that length and that frame...— QuackingTiger (@QuackingTiger) June 5, 2018
I believe Capehart to be a 5-star player, and I’d be very surprised if he did not earn that honor by the time he signs. He is extremely talented, and arguably the best DL prospect in the entire state. At close to 6’5 and already 275 pounds, you wouldn’t know he carried that much weight if you looked at pictures/videos. In the video below, it’s almost astounding how well he carries his weight and moves at his size.
TAKE A LOOK at new #Clemson DL commit DeMonte Capehart!@PaulStrelowTI has the complete details on the 4-star's #AllIn pledge: https://t.co/8WFtNh8xvd— Rivals (@Rivals) June 5, 2018
Be sure to check out https://t.co/rhFKX1XrZN for complete Clemson coverage! pic.twitter.com/1uhRHQ2tO1
But the most impressive thing about Capehart? At a camp in Charlotte, he ran a 4.89 40 yard dash. If those numbers are accurate (which they appear to be), then it is safe to give DeMonte the label of “freakshow”. He is a little raw at this point, however, he possesses the versatility and athleticism of a Basketball player that enables him to play both inside at Defensive Tackle, and outside at End in some schemes/formations.
While the first commitment of the class is an incredible talent, the 2020 recruiting class figures to be possibly Dabo’s best ever. Shakin’ The Southland rarely covers recruiting classes so far away, but the early potential of the 2020 class is so high that it warrants an entire section of the article to itself.
To slightly curb enthusiasm, many close to the program believed that 2019 would go the same way that 2020 is currently shaping up, however, there is a distinct difference between the 2. The 2019 class’ initial success was going to be largely centered around the recruitment of players from Georgia and/or a disappointing season from UGA. Not only did UGA have an incredible season, but the state of Georgia also became much harder to recruit for a multitude of reasons. What also did not help Clemson was that many of its neighboring states outside of Georgia were not talent rich, such as North Carolina, and Tennessee.
The 2020 class does not have this, as Clemson has begun recruiting at a high level nationally. Another massive reason the 2020 class is set to be one of Clemson’s best ever is due to the talent in the Carolinas, especially along the Defensive Line. Carolina talent in 2019 is very weak compared to most years, and it has not only hurt Clemson’s class but also caused Clemson to put a heavier emphasis on recruiting nationally. All of these factors have caused the potential of the 2020 class to be incredibly high, and one result of this is that Capehart likely will not be the only high-profile recruit in his class to be committed to the Tigers by the end of the Summer.
This Summer figures to be an entertaining, and fruitful period of time for Clemson recruiting.