Jack Leggett knows the drill.
He’ll play the recruiting/high-draft-pick game again next cycle with another of the nation’s top high school players: Austin Meadows, a lefthanded pitcher/outfielder from Grayson High in Loganville, GA committed to the Tigers for the class of 2013 over South Carolina, Vanderbilt and Georgia.
Perfect Game ranks Meadows as the No. 2 prospect nationally in his high school class.
The widely-recruited dual position star played centerfield last summer for the Team USA’s U16 squad that won a gold medal in international competition. He batted .537 in the event, in which he set a tournament record by driving in 28 runs in eight games.
By committing, Meadows - who projects to be a high pick in the Major League Draft - has basically given Clemson another first-shot at enrolling an elite-level lefthander, which is a rarity in college baseball.
Clemson came close last summer on Daniel Norris, the nation’s top-rated high school lefty who went down to the wire before signing with the Toronto Blue Jays.
While it may be a long shot that Meadows will ever play for the Tigers, Leggett continues to put his program in the mix for the nation’s elite players.
“You get some, and you lose some,” said Leggett recently. “It’s just a matter of which ones you get, and which ones you lose, and how many. You hope you don’t get hurt so bad that it affects you the year after, or even two or three years down the road. So we try to minimize the damage every year, and educate these kids and get them entrenched to what Clemson’s all about.”