A day removed from National Signing Day, Clemson’s 2014 recruiting class looks strong. It was a relatively drama free day for the Tigers, with all 21 verbal commits and one undecided player faxing over their Letters of Intent to Clemson, South Carolina.
The biggest name of the 2014 recruits was Deshaun Watson, the #1 quarterback recruit in the country, who is said to be one of the biggest commits that Clemson has ever scored. He is an early enrollment, graduating from Gainesville High School in December, where he led the Red Elephants to the Georgia State Championship game. He is expected to challenge to Chad Kelly and Cole Stoudt for the quarterback job this upcoming season.
Another big name recruit was 4 star wide receiver Demarre Kitt, who was another steal from Georgia for Tigers. Kitt joined Watson this spring by graduating early from Sandy Creek High School and enrolling in Clemson. The Clemson coaches are hopeful that Kitt will help to fill the massive void left on the Tiger’s offense by Martavis Bryant and projected 1st round pick, Sammy Watkins.
Hoping to help fill that void with Kitt is Artavis Scott, the #9 nationally ranked wide receiver, from Tarpon Springs, Fl. He joined Watson and Kitt as another early enrollment this spring. His friendship with Watson is likely a big reason for his commitment to Clemson. He is probably the most game-ready receiver in this class and will probably see some playing time next season.
The only drama the Tigers experienced on National Signing Day came from Richard Yeargin III, an outside linebacker from Fort Lauderdale. He had Notre Dame, Florida and Texas on his final list, but announced Wednesday he would be coming to Clemson. He said that he expects that he will earn some playing time as a true freshman, but the coaches are hoping he will bulk up and plan to move him to defensive end to develop into a player like Vic Beasley.
There are some local names that signed with the Tigers on Wednesday. C.J. Fuller, a 3 star running back from Easley High School, about 20 minutes from Clemson’s campus, is said to have a lot of potential to be an impact for the Tigers as a cornerback. Kendall Joseph, a inside linebacker from Belton, SC, really connected with defensive coordinator Brent Venables and could look to make an impact after a few years in the program. Running back Jae’lon Oglesby is coming from Daniel High School, (about 5 minutes from campus) which has been a solid pipeline for Clemson football, bringing players like current Tigers C.J Davidson, and Shaq Lawson and current NFL players like Jarvis Jenkins and 2013 first round draft pick Deandre Hopkins.
Oglesby will be joined by teammates from Daniel, J.D. Davis and Judah Davis, both linebackers. Orange is truly in the Davis brother’s blood. Their father, Jeff Davis, was a member of the 1981 National Championship team. Another member of the 1981 team, Bill Smith, also saw his son sign with the Tigers on Wednesday. Cannon Smith, a tight end from Columbia, SC, will red shirt next season, but shows a lot of promise for the future of Clemson football.
Bill Smith and Jeff Davis’ college rival was Hershel Walker. Walker’s nephew, Milan Richard, will now become teammates with their sons. Milan Richard was the #6 ranked tight end in the nation and is another Georgia native out of Savannah. He wanted to be able to play with fellow Georgians, Deshaun Watson and Demarre Kitt. Hopefully both Kitt and Richard will become favorite targets for Watson in the future.
Another successful National Signing Day for Tigers, who finished in the top 15 recruiting class in the nation for the 4th consecutive year in a row. There is a lot of promise in this class and a lot of players who could make an early impact for the Tigers. After getting a commitment from Mitch Hyatt, a 2015 5-star recruit from Suwannee, Ga, the 2015 recruiting class looks to even out shine this year’s class. Even though Clemson has lost some of its key contributors to recent success, the future of Clemson football looks as bright as ever.
Written by Hannah Raymond and Matthew Goldin