Wayne Gallman brings LB's physicality, 'headhunter' mentality to Tiger backfield

Tony Elliott: 'I think he's someone who can be a really versatile guy, once he grows into his frame'

Wayne Gallman

Wayne Gallman

Tony Elliott figures there's a place for a 'headhunting' linebacker in any good college team's stable of running backs.

Had their preferences been different, Dorian O'Daniel might be lining up in the Clemson backfield this summer as a running back - a position at which he excelled at Good Counsel High in Olney, Md. And Wayne Gallman could be adding depth to Brent Venables' linebacking corps, instead of competing with Tyshon Dye for a spot on the field as a Tiger running back.

A tough, hard-nosed mentality and physical presence is as welcomed on the offensive side of the ball as it is on defense, says Elliott.

"I really love Wayne's physicality," Elliott said. "He played a lot of defense and was a headhunter. He's going to fly up in there and has sort of a reckless abandon for his body.

"That's a good thing and a bad thing for a running back, because they have to take care of their bodies. But he just has an aggressive mentality."

After playing primarily as a linebacker at Grayson High in Loganville, Ga., Gallman has a lot to learn about the finer techniques of his chosen position.

"He's just not played as much running back as some other guys," Elliott said. "He definitely has the ability to project that he'll be a good one, but it may take him a little while in learning to play the position."

One thing that Elliott will be watching closely during preseason camp is how well Gallman catches the ball, evaluating whether he has potential to play in the slot.

"I'll have to assess where he is from a receiver standpoint," Elliott said. "In high school he was in the wing-T some, and in the I-formation, getting the handoff. We did see him catch a couple of balls out of the backfield.

"I don't know about projecting Wayne in the slot, but I do think he's someone who can be a really versatile guy, once he grows into his frame."

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