Brad Brownell got his big man.
And now, with a roster better balanced in terms of both position and class, the Tigers will roll up their sleeves and get to work.
Youth will still be a prevailing storyline as Clemson prepares for the 2013-14 season in the expanded and strengthened ACC. The Tigers' will include - assuming the return of Damarcus Harrison - four freshmen, five sophomores, four juniors and no seniors.
In terms of having adequate personnel at the various positions, things looked to be precarious for the Tigers after rising junior Bernard Sullivan announced his decision to transfer in March.
His departure, along with the graduation of Devin Booker and Milton Jennings, left the Tigers with just two big men - rising sophomores Landry Nnoko and Josh Smith.
During a productive recruiting home stretch, Brownell and his staff added a pair of 6-10 post players - Ibrahim Djambo and Sidy Djitte - who have changed the make-up and dynamics of the entire team.
No longer will 6-7 redshirt freshman Jaron Blossomgame be forced to play almost exclusively at the four-spot, but rather can develop more naturally as an inside-outside player at both the three and four.
Perimeter-based lineups - a post and four guards or wings - now becomes an option rather than a necessity.
No longer will each game begin under the shadow of potential foul trouble.
Neither Djambo nor Djitte are ready-made ACC players, and the same can be said of Nnoko and Smith.
But Brownell and post coach Mike Winiecki now have big bodies, athleticism and talent to work with.
Clemson's bid for Djambo happened late, under the unusual circumstances of taking a junior college graduate.
The Tigers' recruitment of Djitte was a long-term affair.
After he committed on Saturday, Northwood Temple Academy coach Chris Lattimer told the Fayetteville Observer that Clemson's early interest and persistence paid off in Djitte's choice of the Tigers over Cincinnati and Memphis.
“He just couldn’t turn down that loyalty of Clemson, that family atmosphere at Clemson,” Lattimer said of Djitte, who moved from Dakar, Senegal to the United States late in 2011. “They’ve been recruiting him since the day he’s gotten over here, pretty much. Maybe he had a bad game on the AAU circuit, a bad game at Northwood, and they still kept on him and still loved him.
"Coach Brownell is a wonderful person, and he’s an excellent basketball coach. Sidy has only played basketball for about three years now, and he’s going into a situation where, not just with Coach Brownell, but with Coach (Mike) Winiecki and Coach (Earl) Grant, they’re great at developing talent.”
Clemson's 2013-14 Roster, Class By Class
Jaron Blossomgale, 6-7, Alpharetta, Ga.
Austin Ajukwa, 6-5, Columbia, S.C.
Patrick Rooks, 6-3, Charlotte, N.C.
Sidy Mohamed Djitte, 6-10, Dakar, Senegal
Adonis Filer, 6-2, Chicago, Ill.
Jordan Roper, 5-11, Irmo, S.C.
Devin Coleman, 6-2, Philadelphia, Pa.
Josh Smith, 6-8, Charlotte, N.C.
Landry Nnoko, 6-11, Yaounde, Cameroon
K.J. McDaniels, 6-7, Birmingham, Ala.
Damarcus Harrison, 6-4, Greenwood, S.C.
Rod Hall, 6-2, Augusta, Ga.
Ibrahim Djambo, 6-10, Bamako, Mail
Carson Fields, 6-4, Pewee Valley, Ky.
Tigers By Position
Threes and Fours