A couple of decades ago, it would’ve been an absolute insane thought to believe that the Clemson football program would be a national recruiting power drawing attention from the top prospects around the country no matter where they’re from.
Well, that’s where we are now.
As the Clemson football program continues its dominance and reign as one of the top powers in the country, prospects around the nation are taking notice.
In the past three recruiting cycles, Clemson has taken at least one commitment from the state of California and they’ve all been at least 4-stars. In 2019, the Tigers garnered a commitment from 4-star WR Joseph Ngata. They followed that up with a commitment from 5-star DJ Uiagalelei in 2020 and then with 4-star WR Beaux Collins in 2021.
There’s still a chance that the Tigers could continue that trend in 2022 with a commitment from a California prospect, but the big ‘pipeline-building’ year could come in the following 2023 cycle.
Clemson football could build that recruiting pipeline in California in a major way in 2023
There are some big names already on the Tigers’ radar for the 2023 class and the truth of the matter is that Clemson could absolutely dominate the state of California if everything went perfectly.
While a lot could change in the next year, the Tigers are currently squarely in the mix for the three top players in California- all destined to be 5-stars before it’s all said and done.
Who are they?
- QB Malachi Nelson (No. 2 QB in the country)
- ATH Makai Lemon (No. 1 ATH in the country)
- DE Matayo Uiagalelei (No. 2 DE in the country who can also play TE)
All three of these guys are heavily considering Clemson and they’re all going to be major 5-stars before it’s all said and done.
Nelson and Lemon have been said to be a ‘package deal’ and that should bode well for the Tigers considering Nelson has scheduled just two visits so far and they are to Clemson and to Oklahoma. While the Sooners are believed to be the leader, the Tigers are firmly in the mix and that’s all you need at this point.
And then you’ve got monster Matayo Uiagalelei. The brother of current QB DJ Uiagalelei, Matayo measures at 6-foot-5 and 260 pounds. He has played at both tight end and defensive end at camps and there is, obviously, a big interest in Clemson because of his family ties.
It will be interesting to see what happens in the 2023 recruiting cycle, but one thing is for sure: The Tigers will be ‘California dreaming’ in a big way if they could somehow land any of these three targets, much less if they completed the trifecta.