Oct 5, 2013; Syracuse, NY, USA; Clemson Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Clemson 2014 Recruiting Class: The Breakdown

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The 2014 recruiting class is in the books. While the Tigers didn’t make any big splashes on National Signing Day, they did retain every single one of their commits from before NSD, which is always a good sign. Clemson’s class stacks up favorably against the rest of the ACC, coming in as the 3rd best in the conference, and in the top 15 classes nationally. The consistent top 15 finishes in recruiting is a testament to Dabo Swinney and his staff; not only in their ability to recruit, but to sell the program as a perennial national powerhouse, something Swinney has steadfastly preached since becoming head coach in 2008.

Breakdown By Position

QB – 1

RB – 3

WR – 4

TE – 2

OL – 2

DL – 2

LB – 6

DB – 1

K – 1

The Class (all ratings according to rivals.com)

Deshaun Watson – 5 Star QB

Adam Choice – 4 Star RB

Demarre Kitt – 4 Star WR

Jae’lon Oglesby – 4 Star RB

Milan Richard – 4 Star TE

Korie Rogers – 4 Star LB

Artavis Scott – 4 Star WR

Trevion Thompson – 4 Star WR

Justin Falcinelli – 3 Star OL

C.J. Fuller – 3 Star RB

Jefferie Gibson – 3 Star DB

Taylor Hearn – 3 Star OL

Kendall Joseph – 3 Star LB

Kyrin Priester – 3 Star WR

Chris Register – 3 Star DL

Jabril Robinson – 3 Star DL

Cannon Smith – 3 Star TE

Alex Spence – 3 Star K

Jalen Williams – 3 Star LB

Richard Yeargin III – 3 Star LB

J.D. Davis – 2 Star LB

Judah Davis – 2 Star LB

Impact Players

Deshaun Watson - The hype on Watson is well-known at this point in Tiger-Town and across the upstate. Watson excelled in high school and was the #1 rated dual threat QB in this year’s class. He appears to have all the tools to be one of the best quarterbacks in the nation. Watson will certainly get his time to shine in Death Valley, but I don’t think that time comes in 2014. With veterans Cole Stoudt and Chad Kelly familiar with the offense and also vying for the starting role, I think Swinney will give Watson a year to familiarize himself with the playbook and college life. Watson may redshirt and could afford to add some muscle as he currently stands at a slim 6’3″ and 190 pounds.

The Wide Receivers - Take your pick. The whole group is extremely talented and will look to continue the recent streak of stud wideouts coming out of Clemson. Artavis Scott is an extremely quick receiver who stands at 5’11″. I think Scott projects nicely into the slot. He’s a guy who can catch a screen pass and break out with his burst and speed. He’s a playmaker plain and simple. Get the ball in his hands and he’ll make something happen. Demarre Kitt is more of an outside threat. He’s slightly taller than Scott, standing 6’1″, runs good routes, and possesses the ability to to go up and get the ball at its highest point. Trevion Thompson and Kyrin Priester are two more tall receivers. Standing at 6’2″ and 6’1″ respectively, they will both offer another tall target for whomever the quarterback is next season for the Tigers. While Clemson is deep at wide receiver, I expect at least a few of these guys to get some action. Scott, Kitt, and Priester are already enrolled in classes, along with Watson, so they will have a jump start on learning the ways of Chad Morris’ offense. With the loss of Sammy Watkins to the NFL, the Tigers will look towards one of these freshmen for some big plays in 2014.

Korie Rogers - Rogers is a big, tough linebacker from Georgia. He was rated by rivals.com as the #4 LB in the nation, and could be a force for the next 4 years on the defensive side of the ball for the Tigers. While Clemson is deep at LB for 2014, they will be losing a lot of experience at the position following next season, so look for Rogers to play a big role sooner rather than later for Brent Venables.

Jae’lon Oglesby, Adam Choice - These two running backs have a chance to come in and compete for touches right away. Running back is typically a position where the learning curve isn’t too steep, so the possibility of getting carries right off the bat is not out of the question. The key for both of these backs will be their ability to pass protect, and outperform returning players like Zac Brooks and D.J. Howard. Even if the carries go to the veterans in 2014, Oglesby and Choice should provide a strong running game for the Tigers for years to come.

Richard Yeargin III - Yeargin is a guy I personally really like. He reminds me a bit of Vic Beasley. The only difference being that right now Yeargin is listed as a LB. I think that will change once he gets to campus. Yeargin stands between 6’3″ and 6’4″ and weighs around 215-225 pounds. That is BIG for a linebacker. I think Yeargin has a future as a pass rusher, and with Korie Rogers coming in this class as an OLB, I foresee Yeargin making the move to the defensive line. Look out for Yeargin a couple years down the road as the surprise of this year’s class.

Alex Spence - Rarely would you expect to see a kicker as an impact player, but Spence has a shot at the starting job next year. The Tigers are losing Chandler Catanzaro after an extremely successful career at Clemson, leaving the starting kicker job wide open for 2014. Spence has said that he expects to compete for the starting role, and if he wins it, he will be an enormous piece to the 2014 puzzle.

There you have it. The 2014 recruiting class for the Clemson Tigers. There are a lot of good pieces to be hopeful about with this class, specifically on the offensive side of the ball. Dabo Swinney will once again have an exciting group of players coming in to Tiger Town in 2014.

Tags: Clemson Tigers Dabo Swinney Deshaun Watson

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