Rivals.com National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell’s Three-Point Stance is here with a look at some recent commitments and how they impact their teams, Clemson’s excellent out-of-state recruiting and some small classes that have some star power.
1. Miss a commit? I've got you covered
As usual during this time of year there have been numerous commitments across the country. Here are some of the ones that impressed me and why.
RB Demarkus Bowman, Clemson – Another five-star for Clemson, ho hum. Bowman is a powerful runner with speed who can also catch the ball. This is a huge recruiting win over Florida, his longtime leader.
OT Jimmy Christ, Virginia – Christ has a great frame and plenty of room to fill out and he’s so long he’ll be tough to get around at the college level. This is a great in-state pickup for the Cavaliers.
QB Evan Prater, Cincinnati – Prater has a very high ceiling as a tall, skinny dual-threat who is a good fit for the Bearcats offense. He could be a guy who emerges as a talent higher than his ranking down the line.
LB Antoine Sampah, LSU – The Tigers are recruiting so well out of state it’s one of the storylines of the 2020 class. Sampah was a surprise from Virginia heading to LSU but with Devin White going so high in the draft you can see what they are selling.
OL Peter Skoronski, Northwestern – Skornonski and Priebe are a great 1-2 punch at offensive line and his ceiling is very, very high. He’s one of those undersized linemen who is athletic and that we could hear big things from down the road.
QB D.J. Uiagalelei, Clemson – The No. 1 player in the country and the No. 1 quarterback in the country chooses Clemson. Sound familiar? Uiagalelei is not Trevor Lawrence but he’s a great player in his own right.
2. Clemson sets the out-of-state standard
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Last week I talked about how scary it would be if LSU continues to recruit at a national level like they are in the 2020 class. How scary? Clemson scary. Landing the No. 1 player in the country from California is only the latest in a long string of five-stars Clemson has lured from out of state. There’s a reason they have won two national titles in three years and why they will be in the hunt to win many more. Here are some of the big wins.
QB DeShaun Watson, 2014 – It all starts with Watson as most fans will agree. And there was zero drama in his recruitment as he chose Clemson over programs local and far away and led Clemson to the promised land. The Georgia product was beyond important to the success Clemson is having now.
DT Christian Wilkins, 2015 – The leader of the defense for the last many seasons, Wilkins came down to Clemson and Boston College and obviously made the right choice. He played in Connecticut but hailed from Massachusetts.
WR Deon Cain, 2015 – Cain had a very solid career at Clemson and made some big plays and was a quarterback converted to wide receiver out of Florida.
ATH Ray-Ray McCloud, 2015 – McCloud not only impacted as a wide receiver and on special teams but the Florida product helped keep the Tampa connection going along with Cain.
OL Mitch Hyatt, 2015 – Okay I’m cheating. Hyatt was a five-star who lost his fifth star late in the process but the Georgia lineman was key for the Tigers from day one. How on earth he wasn’t drafted is beyond me.
DT Dexter Lawrence, 2016 – The No. 2 player in the country chose Clemson over many locals and had offers from all over. He teamed up with Wilkins and they did pretty well, no?
LB Tre Lamar, 2016 – Lamar was a five-star get out of Georgia and a key to the defense as he got better each year. It’s still puzzling to me why some NFL team didn’t take a chance on him like Hyatt.
LB Rahshaun Smith, 2016 – Okay they can’t all be home runs but Smith, who committed to Clemson twice, was a huge get out of Maryland via IMG in Florida.
DB AJ Terrell, 2017 – A huge and speedy cornerback, Terrell was coveted by everyone and chose Clemson over a ton of offers. The Georgia product will be a star this year and began showing that promise last season.
WR Tee Higgins, 2017 – The Tennessee wideout should have his breakout season this year and has been a huge part of the passing offense.
QB Hunter Johnson, 2017 – Had a guy named Trevor Lawrence not come along the five star from Indiana would be the starter this year. Instead he had to transfer to Northwestern.
QB Trevor Lawrence, 2018 – A dynamic quarterback from Georgia who had zero drama in his recruitment? Sounds familiar and Lawrence is even better than Watson.
WR Justyn Ross, 2018 – Dabo Swinney went right into Alabama and stole the top player in the state away from Saban and we all saw impact he had last year.
OL Jackson Carman, 2018 – Swinney went right into Ohio and stole the top player in the state away from Urban Meyer and we will see his impact soon.
DE Xavier Thomas, 2018 – Okay, I’m cheating here as well. Technically he was landed out of Florida and IMG Academy but the home-state product is already a star at Clemson and he hasn’t even started.
DE KJ Henry, 2018 – Henry will be the next great defensive end for Clemson if he continues to develop. He’s another huge get from North Carolina.
CB Andrew Booth, 2019 – Another five-star out of Georgia, Clemson has made it a habit of stealing five-star prospects out of the Peach State.
CB Fred Davis, 2020 – Another great five star get from Florida, Davis is an elite corner and follows the tradition of players like Mackensie Alexander and Trayvon Mullen who were high-level four-stars.
DE Bryan Bresee, 2020 – This was a no brainer from the start as the Maryland defensive end fell in love with Clemson. And why not after putting three defensive linemen in the first round.
RB Demarkcus Bowman, 2020 – An elite running back from Florida choosing Clemson. It’s kind of like C.J. Spiller except Bowman will have so much more talent around him.
QB D.J. Uiagalelei, 2020 – The top quarterback in the nation picks Clemson. Oh and he’s from California? No surprise.