Tigers reload with fourth straight top-15 recruiting class

Class of 22 includes five early enrollees, 13 who signed NLIs, 4 grayshirts

B-HP linebacker Kendall Joseph signs with Clemson University on Wednesday morning.

Photo by Ken Ruinard

B-HP linebacker Kendall Joseph signs with Clemson University on Wednesday morning.

A no-surprise Wednesday was mostly good news for the Clemson football program, which reloaded with a 22-man signing class that Dabo Swinney described as "the lifeblood of the program."

The Tigers' class includes five early enrollees, 13 players who signed National Letters of Intent, and four more who signed Financial Aid Agreements as 'grayshirts.'

Headlining the class is the nation's top-rated dual-threat quarterback in Deshaun Watson.

Clemson group of signees also includes four wide receivers, three running backs, two defensive linemen, two offensive linemen, six linebackers, two tight ends, one defensive back and a kicker.

2014 class breakdown, pt. 1

Swinney breaks it down

The Tigers picked up one signing day addition in Richard Yeargin III, a defensive end from Fort Lauderdale, Fla. who announced for Clemson on Wednesday over Notre Dame and Texas.

They struck out on Cory Thomas, a defensive tackle from McCalla, Ala. committed to Tennessee who surprised everyone by signing with Mississippi State.

Defensive end Andrew Williams of McDonough, Ga. will announce later this afternoon from among Auburn, Clemson and Georgia. Auburn is considered to be his favorite.

Clemson's class is currently ranked 12th nationally by Rivals, 13th by ESPN, 27th by Scout and 16th in the 247Sports composite rankings.

The Tigers' class is ranked as the ACC's third best behind Florida State and Miami.

It marks the fourth straight year that Clemson's class has been ranked in the top 15 nationally.

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Comments » 24

tigerrob44#291802 writes:

Is a top 15 recruiting class good enough to win you a national championship? 4 straight at least top 15 recruiting classes will certainly make people take notice of you. This past year we came close. I still can't figure out what went wrong against FSU but I do know they were not that much better than we were. Had we not fell apart in the 2nd half down there in 2012 we would have run over them and no rational thinking person can say with honesty they got that much better than us in one year. That's ridiculous and utter nonsense. I know how we lost to SC as does everybody else and it wasn't because they were better than we were. We were a much better team they were but when you turn the ball over 6 times we may have lost to Irmo High School that night. I think we have a coaching staff in place at the moment to take a 12th ranked recruiting class and get them to the top 4 at the end of the year. The future does look brighter now for our football program than in many years if you think about it rationally. We have a lot of good players on the team right now and plenty more on the way. I honestly believe our defense will be as good as the '81 defense next year provided our secondary cones through. Our front 7 will stop any running team dead in their tracks just as they did for the most part last year. I can't wait until next season to see just how good we really may be.

gamecockg writes:

in response to tigerrob44#291802:

Is a top 15 recruiting class good enough to win you a national championship? 4 straight at least top 15 recruiting classes will certainly make people take notice of you. This past year we came close. I still can't figure out what went wrong against FSU but I do know they were not that much better than we were. Had we not fell apart in the 2nd half down there in 2012 we would have run over them and no rational thinking person can say with honesty they got that much better than us in one year. That's ridiculous and utter nonsense. I know how we lost to SC as does everybody else and it wasn't because they were better than we were. We were a much better team they were but when you turn the ball over 6 times we may have lost to Irmo High School that night. I think we have a coaching staff in place at the moment to take a 12th ranked recruiting class and get them to the top 4 at the end of the year. The future does look brighter now for our football program than in many years if you think about it rationally. We have a lot of good players on the team right now and plenty more on the way. I honestly believe our defense will be as good as the '81 defense next year provided our secondary cones through. Our front 7 will stop any running team dead in their tracks just as they did for the most part last year. I can't wait until next season to see just how good we really may be.

Lets see you had a PARADE and CIRCUS before the game.Then you got your BUTT beat 51-7.So Fla St was not THAT much better.Are you kidding me.That right and SOUTH CAROLINA was not better.FLA ST won 51-14I was not counting that last TD because Fla st let you score in the last 45 seconds of the game.

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to tigerrob44#291802:

Is a top 15 recruiting class good enough to win you a national championship? 4 straight at least top 15 recruiting classes will certainly make people take notice of you. This past year we came close. I still can't figure out what went wrong against FSU but I do know they were not that much better than we were. Had we not fell apart in the 2nd half down there in 2012 we would have run over them and no rational thinking person can say with honesty they got that much better than us in one year. That's ridiculous and utter nonsense. I know how we lost to SC as does everybody else and it wasn't because they were better than we were. We were a much better team they were but when you turn the ball over 6 times we may have lost to Irmo High School that night. I think we have a coaching staff in place at the moment to take a 12th ranked recruiting class and get them to the top 4 at the end of the year. The future does look brighter now for our football program than in many years if you think about it rationally. We have a lot of good players on the team right now and plenty more on the way. I honestly believe our defense will be as good as the '81 defense next year provided our secondary cones through. Our front 7 will stop any running team dead in their tracks just as they did for the most part last year. I can't wait until next season to see just how good we really may be.

Came close to what? Robbie...I have chatted with you in the recent past. Please take off those uringe colored glasses, stop sipping Blabbos's koolaide, and come back to reality. FSU is so much better than Clemmons, it shouldn't be a topic of discussion. SC just flat out beat ya up in the 4th quarter. To answer your recruiting question, please read above. FSU's class is far superior, and SC's is just as good, and if you look at average star rating...slightly better. And please don't whine about turnovers...that's part of the game, and has gotten old. We'll see how good that defense really is when you go between the hedges...large dose of Gurley coming at ya.

KIMOSAMI writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

Came close to what? Robbie...I have chatted with you in the recent past. Please take off those uringe colored glasses, stop sipping Blabbos's koolaide, and come back to reality. FSU is so much better than Clemmons, it shouldn't be a topic of discussion. SC just flat out beat ya up in the 4th quarter. To answer your recruiting question, please read above. FSU's class is far superior, and SC's is just as good, and if you look at average star rating...slightly better. And please don't whine about turnovers...that's part of the game, and has gotten old. We'll see how good that defense really is when you go between the hedges...large dose of Gurley coming at ya.

Hey, troll...why don't you go stutter-it-up with the old ball sack (dubya nickname...'scrotum').

You're always around this site trying to pester people who are brighter than you.

KIMOSAMI writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

Came close to what? Robbie...I have chatted with you in the recent past. Please take off those uringe colored glasses, stop sipping Blabbos's koolaide, and come back to reality. FSU is so much better than Clemmons, it shouldn't be a topic of discussion. SC just flat out beat ya up in the 4th quarter. To answer your recruiting question, please read above. FSU's class is far superior, and SC's is just as good, and if you look at average star rating...slightly better. And please don't whine about turnovers...that's part of the game, and has gotten old. We'll see how good that defense really is when you go between the hedges...large dose of Gurley coming at ya.

Clemmons....
Blabbos......
The Old Ball Sack, AKA, The Barnyard Drunk.....

The gang's all here, huh?

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to KIMOSAMI:

Hey, troll...why don't you go stutter-it-up with the old ball sack (dubya nickname...'scrotum').

You're always around this site trying to pester people who are brighter than you.

Kimosammy...for sure you aren't brighter. Your lightbulb blew a long time ago. I do enjoy your posts and 5th grade name calling, as you always entertain me. Old ball sack or whatever...he just keeps on whuppin' Clemmons and Blabbo. Please keep on yappin' Kimosammy...at some point you'll same something intelligent.

clemvol writes:

Top recruiting class again.Where will it take us? Where has it taken us? Certainly not to where i think we need to be on a consistant basis. A 3 star is a big fish in a little pond in High School, a 4 star is a bigger fish in a little pond and a 5 star is the biggest fish in a little pond. What happens when you put these star rated players against the same star rated players is your answer. It will always come down to player development.Bottom line is that we are being passed by on player development by lesser teams and staff.Until this corner is turned we will have to continue to take a verbal bashing ( and we can take it )but all things run in cycles and things will turn and there" will be a new Sheriff in town." It will be interesting in how thick other folks skin will be. Until then the wait will continue but be ready.

AFTiger87 writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

Came close to what? Robbie...I have chatted with you in the recent past. Please take off those uringe colored glasses, stop sipping Blabbos's koolaide, and come back to reality. FSU is so much better than Clemmons, it shouldn't be a topic of discussion. SC just flat out beat ya up in the 4th quarter. To answer your recruiting question, please read above. FSU's class is far superior, and SC's is just as good, and if you look at average star rating...slightly better. And please don't whine about turnovers...that's part of the game, and has gotten old. We'll see how good that defense really is when you go between the hedges...large dose of Gurley coming at ya.

Gurley was shutdown for the most part last year. He had 2 or 3 runs that went for 20+, longest being a 75 yarder. You take that one busted play away and he is under 80 yards. Did it happen? Yes, but you can't think that b/c of one run he torched Clemson's defense last year. They handled him last year and hopefully again this year. TOs are part of the game, but without those 6(3 or 4 in one quarter) it may have been a different ball game. TOP was in Carolina's favor b/c of them. They are part of the game and that happens sometimes.

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to AFTiger87:

Gurley was shutdown for the most part last year. He had 2 or 3 runs that went for 20+, longest being a 75 yarder. You take that one busted play away and he is under 80 yards. Did it happen? Yes, but you can't think that b/c of one run he torched Clemson's defense last year. They handled him last year and hopefully again this year. TOs are part of the game, but without those 6(3 or 4 in one quarter) it may have been a different ball game. TOP was in Carolina's favor b/c of them. They are part of the game and that happens sometimes.

I hear what you're saying, but, I totally disagree. Gurley only had 12 carries against CU last year, and ran for in excess of 150 yards, and averaged almost 13 yards per carry. Based on this, the average person would say he torched you. As far as saying "take this play, or that play away," that statement could be made about almost every game. As an example, a QB throws 10 passes in a game, and completes only 5, but, 4 go for TD's...did he torch you? And if you take those 4 pass plays away, you would have won. Also consider some of those turnovers were actually takeaways, although, as everyone knows, recorded as turnovers. There again, could be said about a large percentage of games.

AFTiger87 writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

I hear what you're saying, but, I totally disagree. Gurley only had 12 carries against CU last year, and ran for in excess of 150 yards, and averaged almost 13 yards per carry. Based on this, the average person would say he torched you. As far as saying "take this play, or that play away," that statement could be made about almost every game. As an example, a QB throws 10 passes in a game, and completes only 5, but, 4 go for TD's...did he torch you? And if you take those 4 pass plays away, you would have won. Also consider some of those turnovers were actually takeaways, although, as everyone knows, recorded as turnovers. There again, could be said about a large percentage of games.

I get what you're saying, but you're talking about a higher total than I am. They gave up one chunk play that went for half of his yardage. It would be a different story if I were saying take away 3 or 4 of them that went for TDs. I am talking one chunk play. Thats what I mean by saying they handled him fairly well and I don't think he really torched them b/c of one run. I feel like the QB throwing 4 TDs is not a fair comparison. You're talking a 50% comp. rate and a 40% TD rate. All I am saying is that half of his yardage was on 1 run. From my memory, which I could be wrong, at least 3 of those TOs were unforced mental errors. Tajh threw one INT and the other was desperation. Tajh fumbled once that was forced by a SC player, and Adam fumbled once b/c of a SC player.

tigerrob44#291802 writes:

To GamecockG:No FSU wasn't tha much better as an over all team. They were that particular night. When you play a team 10 times and you win 5 and then your team has a 14 point lead on them at their house and the lead should have been 21 with 10 minutes left in the 3rd quarter, no, they aren't that much better. They had a better team than we did this year but they weren't 40 points better. You can't improve that much in one year when other team improves quite a bit, too. You talk foolish talk and I know why you talk crazy. It's because you are an idiot Gamecock.

harryD writes:

Ok truth... how much better is fsu than the coots? And just answer the question save the cute smart mouth for someone else.

DerrikB writes:

FSU and SC - turnovers, dropped passes, wrong routes- we played like crap. A good football team that plays like crap won't win - ask SC and Tennessee. I hope this new offense this year doesn't have any of those bugs that the previous one did. If they can play consistently and not shoot themselves in the foot - ooh pair that with the defense... we will see a solid football team this year. I just hope the play calling gets a little smarter too.

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to harryD:

Ok truth... how much better is fsu than the coots? And just answer the question save the cute smart mouth for someone else.

Goodness Hairy...look at you just step right up and take over...impressive. To answer your question..FSU is definitely better than SC...they are the champs. However, it also appears SC is definitely better than Clems Son. My scoreboard says 5 in a row..all by double digits...how about yours? Still don't get the relationship between a coot and a gamecock. I suppose you have to be a Clemmer to appreciate that metaphor. In closing, may I guess what that D on your handle represents? I would bet it is Dumba_ _. Question answered...now, go away.

TigerFan95 writes:

in response to harryD:

Ok truth... how much better is fsu than the coots? And just answer the question save the cute smart mouth for someone else.

Given that the 2009 SEC East champion lamecocks couldn't beat a mediocre FSU team, I'd say a much more dominant 2013 FSU team would butt-rape them just like they did Clemson.

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to TigerFan95:

Given that the 2009 SEC East champion lamecocks couldn't beat a mediocre FSU team, I'd say a much more dominant 2013 FSU team would butt-rape them just like they did Clemson.

You are absolutely correct...FSU did beat us...no excuses. Allow me to mount my soapbox. For many years I watched CU beat up my Gamecocks, in football and baseball, and suffered many disappointing moments. But, it ain't happening at this point in time, and it sure is sweet. When you walk on the field, 1 of 2 things is gonna happen...you win or lose. None of this woulda, shoulda, coulda stuff. You have never seen me post an excuse, it's not in my make-up. Either you win or lose. So, man up, and stop making excuses, whining, and crying(TigerRob and a few others). I realize, at some point in time, it could reverse again, but I don't see it happening with your current coaching staff in place. Also understand, SC has as many good athletes as CU, and beat you because they outcoach you. I'm done...thank you. By the way...how did your team do against SC in 2009? Does 34-17 ring a bell for ya?

clemvol writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

You are absolutely correct...FSU did beat us...no excuses. Allow me to mount my soapbox. For many years I watched CU beat up my Gamecocks, in football and baseball, and suffered many disappointing moments. But, it ain't happening at this point in time, and it sure is sweet. When you walk on the field, 1 of 2 things is gonna happen...you win or lose. None of this woulda, shoulda, coulda stuff. You have never seen me post an excuse, it's not in my make-up. Either you win or lose. So, man up, and stop making excuses, whining, and crying(TigerRob and a few others). I realize, at some point in time, it could reverse again, but I don't see it happening with your current coaching staff in place. Also understand, SC has as many good athletes as CU, and beat you because they outcoach you. I'm done...thank you. By the way...how did your team do against SC in 2009? Does 34-17 ring a bell for ya?

My turn. No excuses here. I happen to believe that you are only as good as the last time you played a certain team. So, at this time FSU owns Clemson and SC owns Clemson the same way that Georgia owns SC and Tennessee owns SC. There is no absolute denial of this. It's reality and if anyone differs then you are living "fantasy football". The only thing that really burns me is when we continue to lose to a certain teams that don't and can't win any kind of championship themselves. But that's on us and we have no one to blame but ourselves when we lose to these mediocre opponents. I believe you take it but then be ready to give it. Time will tell again.

harryD writes:

Ok truth again save the smart mouth how much better was UGA this year than the Dirtpeckers huh?

harryD writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

You are absolutely correct...FSU did beat us...no excuses. Allow me to mount my soapbox. For many years I watched CU beat up my Gamecocks, in football and baseball, and suffered many disappointing moments. But, it ain't happening at this point in time, and it sure is sweet. When you walk on the field, 1 of 2 things is gonna happen...you win or lose. None of this woulda, shoulda, coulda stuff. You have never seen me post an excuse, it's not in my make-up. Either you win or lose. So, man up, and stop making excuses, whining, and crying(TigerRob and a few others). I realize, at some point in time, it could reverse again, but I don't see it happening with your current coaching staff in place. Also understand, SC has as many good athletes as CU, and beat you because they outcoach you. I'm done...thank you. By the way...how did your team do against SC in 2009? Does 34-17 ring a bell for ya?

How about tenn this year how much better were they this year? Don't quit now.

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to harryD:

How about tenn this year how much better were they this year? Don't quit now.

Hairy..you just don't get it..do ya? Nothing you say is gonna change a thing. UT was 2 points better this year, and UGA was 11 points better...SC lost both games. However, keep in mind, my Dirtpeckers beat your Paper Tiggers by 2 TD's...again, and that's a fact. No excuses Hairy. Now, please sit down, be quiet, and control yourself, until someone calls on you again.

TigerFan95 writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

You are absolutely correct...FSU did beat us...no excuses. Allow me to mount my soapbox. For many years I watched CU beat up my Gamecocks, in football and baseball, and suffered many disappointing moments. But, it ain't happening at this point in time, and it sure is sweet. When you walk on the field, 1 of 2 things is gonna happen...you win or lose. None of this woulda, shoulda, coulda stuff. You have never seen me post an excuse, it's not in my make-up. Either you win or lose. So, man up, and stop making excuses, whining, and crying(TigerRob and a few others). I realize, at some point in time, it could reverse again, but I don't see it happening with your current coaching staff in place. Also understand, SC has as many good athletes as CU, and beat you because they outcoach you. I'm done...thank you. By the way...how did your team do against SC in 2009? Does 34-17 ring a bell for ya?

Hate to break this news to you, but the reason SC has been winning the last five years has had very little to do with Spurrier’s great coaching ability or Dabo’s lack of it. It’s had more to do with the talent advantage you guys gained with the way our coaching change took place in 2008. SC fans like yourself fail to realize that Spurrier was given a huge recruiting gift back then with Bowden being fired mid-season and Dabo not having the interim tag removed from his job description until the end of the season. Perhaps you didn’t realize that Clemson only signed 12 guys that year but SC signed 29...That’s right TWENTY-NINE. Just those numbers alone should make it pretty clear the size of the advantage you guys had over us. That’s not an excuse, that’s just a fact. Fortunately for us and unfortunately for you guys, that class has now fully cycled thru. With the consistently good classes we’ve signed the last four years, as pointed out in this article, the talent advantage will soon turn back in our favor. Just watching this past year’s game you could already see that the teams were pretty evenly matched talent wise. The only advantage I saw was that SC has the mental edge over us at this point. All it will take for that to be erased is one Clemson win, which will likely happen this year. Better enjoy the streak while you can.

radtiger writes:

in response to TheTruth46:

Hairy..you just don't get it..do ya? Nothing you say is gonna change a thing. UT was 2 points better this year, and UGA was 11 points better...SC lost both games. However, keep in mind, my Dirtpeckers beat your Paper Tiggers by 2 TD's...again, and that's a fact. No excuses Hairy. Now, please sit down, be quiet, and control yourself, until someone calls on you again.

Amen truth... but theres so many delusional fans on here, they will forever make excuses for CLEMSON losing to SC....I cant wait to see the EXCUSE for this year

FlopEye writes:

in response to TigerFan95:

Hate to break this news to you, but the reason SC has been winning the last five years has had very little to do with Spurrier’s great coaching ability or Dabo’s lack of it. It’s had more to do with the talent advantage you guys gained with the way our coaching change took place in 2008. SC fans like yourself fail to realize that Spurrier was given a huge recruiting gift back then with Bowden being fired mid-season and Dabo not having the interim tag removed from his job description until the end of the season. Perhaps you didn’t realize that Clemson only signed 12 guys that year but SC signed 29...That’s right TWENTY-NINE. Just those numbers alone should make it pretty clear the size of the advantage you guys had over us. That’s not an excuse, that’s just a fact. Fortunately for us and unfortunately for you guys, that class has now fully cycled thru. With the consistently good classes we’ve signed the last four years, as pointed out in this article, the talent advantage will soon turn back in our favor. Just watching this past year’s game you could already see that the teams were pretty evenly matched talent wise. The only advantage I saw was that SC has the mental edge over us at this point. All it will take for that to be erased is one Clemson win, which will likely happen this year. Better enjoy the streak while you can.

In other words, " WAIT UNTIL NEXT YEAR ".
YA DA YA DA YA DA!!!!

Sorry to be the one to tell you, but
The " COOTS " have recruited a few
decent players too.

TheTruth46 writes:

in response to TigerFan95:

Hate to break this news to you, but the reason SC has been winning the last five years has had very little to do with Spurrier’s great coaching ability or Dabo’s lack of it. It’s had more to do with the talent advantage you guys gained with the way our coaching change took place in 2008. SC fans like yourself fail to realize that Spurrier was given a huge recruiting gift back then with Bowden being fired mid-season and Dabo not having the interim tag removed from his job description until the end of the season. Perhaps you didn’t realize that Clemson only signed 12 guys that year but SC signed 29...That’s right TWENTY-NINE. Just those numbers alone should make it pretty clear the size of the advantage you guys had over us. That’s not an excuse, that’s just a fact. Fortunately for us and unfortunately for you guys, that class has now fully cycled thru. With the consistently good classes we’ve signed the last four years, as pointed out in this article, the talent advantage will soon turn back in our favor. Just watching this past year’s game you could already see that the teams were pretty evenly matched talent wise. The only advantage I saw was that SC has the mental edge over us at this point. All it will take for that to be erased is one Clemson win, which will likely happen this year. Better enjoy the streak while you can.

Well now, this takes the woulda, shoulda, coulda theory to new heighths. Am I understanding this is your explanation for the last 5 years? One question for you...how many players did CU dress out for each of these games? My best guess would be... just as many as SC...sound reasonable to you? I would agree, Clemmons has many good football players, but, so does SC. CU certainly has the opportunity to win this coming season, and might do just that. However, should they get beat again by a mediocre to average(as some have said) SC team, what will the excuse be this time? Let me take a stab at that. Dang, those Lamecocks beat us again and we have a much better team(anybody can see that), we would have won...if they hadn't scored more points than us. I just don't get it...our recruiting classes have been rated so much better than theirs.

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