football Edit

Swinney Camp underway - Camp Insider 1

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Clemson's coaching staff is in the midst of the inaugural Dabo Swinney Football Camp, where hundreds of players from within the Tigers' Southeastern recruiting footprint, as well as a few out-of-region visitors, will be in town this week.
The Tigers kicked off camp on Sunday, a session that began at 3 p.m. The Swinney Camp's first session is slated to run through Tuesday, June 9. The second session will host campers from Wednesday, June 10 through Friday, June 12. Saturday, June 13, the Tigers will host a 7-on-7 passing camp tournament, which will conclude all camp-related activity for the 2009 summer.
As always, Tigerillustrated.com, the No. 1 authority on Clemson football and recruiting, will provide subscribers with a blueprint of this year's camp with daily updates, news, notes, analysis and features.
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Swinney's Stock Up
The head coach is of course the face of every football program. For Clemson, following ten years of selling Tommy Bowden, Tiger staffers are now pushing a new front-man this recruiting cycle.
While the NCAA mandates that camps must be instructional-based, and not recruiting platforms, of course any time college coaching staffs can welcome prospects on campus, regardless of the reason, it is an advantage. It's also an opportunity to sell the program.
While Swinney & Co. will focus a majority of the week on putting campers through the paces, most of whom will not be Division I-A prospects, as is the case with every program's camp, the head coach and staffers will indeed re-establish themselves and their experience in the Division I-A ranks in talks with campers.
Coaches reintroducing themselves to many prospects who only know staffers to this point through hand-written correspondence, email, phone calls and spring stops, will be key, given that the first-year staff, collectively, is still working in many ways to recreate an interest in Clemson's brand, following the transition that began with Swinney's hiring on December 1.
Swinney hired five new full-time assistants last winter – wide receivers coach Jeff Scott, who was promoted after serving less than one year as a graduate assistant, defensive backs coach and co-coordinator Charlie Harbison, defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Kevin Steele, defensive tackles coach Dan Brooks, and offensive tackles and tight ends coach Danny Pearman. Both Scott and Pearman are former Clemson lettermen.
To belabor the obvious, the week also provides yet another opportunity in the post-spring evaluation period for coaches to personally evaluate prospects, as the Tigers' working, active recruiting board changes daily.
Clemson's staff currently has five verbal commits, and aims to take no less than 20 players in its 2010 recruiting class.
Clemson's 2010 Recruiting Class To Date
1. Martavis Bryant (WR 6-4, 190) Anderson – T.L. Hanna
2. DeAndre Hopkins (WR 6-2, 170) Central – Daniel
3. Joe Craig (ATH 5-11, 170) Gaffney
4. Jake Nicolopulos (LB 6-2, 220) Anderson – T.L. Hanna
5. Ricky Chaney (DB 6-2, 195) Beaufort – Battery Creek
Light load in Sunday
Sunday's session was a very light load of Division I-A prospects for Clemson staffers. Easily the two biggest names in attendance were 2011 linebacker A.J. Johnson of Gainesville (GA) and 2011 wide receiver Charone Peake of Roebuck – Dorman.
Clemson has maintained outstanding shape with both recruits, with the Tigers offering Peake over a year ago, and Johnson picking up a tender from the Orange & White in April. Tiger offensive coordinator Billy Napier is recruiting Johnson. Jeff Scott is recruiting Peake.
Clemson and Georgia are at the top for both. Georgia has yet to offer Johnson. Tigerillustrated.com scouted both at the Athens (GA) Nike Training Camp in April. Tigerillustrated.com bills Johnson as a future four-star prospect and Rivals250 member, while Peake is our No. 1-rated wide receiver prospect in the Palmetto State, regardless of class. Peake is a future Rivals100 pick, and will draw five-star consideration next spring.
It should be noted that Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney and Jeff Scott spent considerable time with Peake Sunday. Swinney on one occasion pulled the franchise wideout aside following a route during a one-on-one. Johnson began his afternoon workout with Tiger defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Kevin Steele.
Keep an eye on under-the-radar tight end Sam Cooper, who without a doubt made a statement in Sunday's drills. The Nashville (TN) Ensworth athlete, who stands in at just under 6-foot-5, weighing 220 pounds, has drawn Division I-A interest for much of the spring, but is quickly rising on the Tigers' recruiting board.
Cooper spent plenty of time with Napier and offensive tackles and tight ends coach Danny Pearman Sunday. Tigerillustrated.com does want to point out that there is a tie to Ensworth for both Swinney and Pearman, as coach Lemanski Hall has maintained a close rapport with the two Clemson coaches for nearly two decades since their playing days at Alabama.
Charlotte (NC) Providence Day 2011 quarterback Price Litton was impressive in Sunday's drills. And the 6-foot-3, 192-pounder spent plenty of time with Napier.
Litton has family with Clemson ties, and relatives who live in Greenville. The Tigers are co-leaders for his services currently. Tigerillustrated.com interviewed the underclassman gunslinger Sunday evening and released that article shortly after 7:30 p.m. EST.
Jacksonville (FL) Bolles offensive lineman and Greenville native Brent Benedict arrived on campus shortly before 8 p.m. EST Sunday. The No. 5-rated offensive tackle recruit in the nation is a major recruiting priority for the Tigers, which used both spring evaluation period stops to see the Rivals100 member last month. Clemson, Florida and Georgia are atop Benedict's leader board.
The week ahead
Tigerillustrated.com will of course release "many" more names of camp attendees as the week progresses, but a few Sunday footnotes for the week ahead, as part of this free feature:
*** Lake City High school has made plans to send as many as eight players to the Swinney Camp this week. Of course two notables Tigerillustrated.com will be tracking include stud 2011 running back Shon Carson and 2010 defensive back Sheldon Robinson.
Clemson is in strong shape for both. Pearman stopped by the Pee Dee program twice last month to evaluate the duo. Clemson offered Carson in 2008. The talented back will draw four-star consideration next spring. Robinson is billed by Rivals.com as a three-star prospect.
*** Brunswick (GA) will send two big-time prospects up Friday – 2011 athlete Justin Coleman and physical 2011 wideout Demarius Dawson. Coleman is a four-star projection by Tigerillustrated.com. Jeff Scott stopped by the school last month to evaluate both prospects. Brunswick's head coach is South Carolina native and former Chester head coach Vic Floyd.
*** Speaking of Chester, its program will send three prospects up to Clemson on Friday as well, starting with massive 6-foot-5, 350-pound offensive lineman and long-time Clemson lean Kalon Davis. Davis visited Clemson earlier this spring. The Tigers and Alabama are atop his pre-summer list. Davis could have a decision before the end of the summer. Clemson's staff used up both of its spring evaluation period stops to see the big-time lineman.
2011 quarterback Tony McNeal and 2011 running back Julius Pendergrass of Chester also will be up this week. Both unofficially visited Clemson last fall.
*** Keeping with the 2011 theme, franchise rising junior legacy recruit Jay Rome of Valdosta (GA), whose father Stan Rome lettered in both football and basketball at Clemson, will be up to camp on Thursday. Rome is a heavy lean to the Tigers. Already he has an offer from Clemson, as well as Georgia, Florida and Florida State. The 6-foot-6, 230-pound tight end is arguably the top recruit in the Peach State for 2011. Rome may also get work on the hardwood on the next level.
*** Rock Hill three-star cornerback Xavier McFadden told Tigerillustrated.com over the weekend he intended to make it up to Clemson this week, likely on Monday. Clemson has closely evaluated the 5-foot-11, 165-pounder, but has not yet offered.
*** One Monday arrival of note is Loganville (GA) offensive lineman Morgan Bailey, a 6-foot-4, 285-pounder who found the spring evaluation period to be very kind, as the offers rolled in from Clemson, Georgia Tech, Florida State, Kentucky, Maryland, South Carolina, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Wake Forest, among several others.
Bailey unofficially visited Clemson last month, and gave the trip very high marks. The Tigers and Yellow Jackets have been atop his shortlist for over a month.
*** Another Monday arrival is under-the-radar linebacker Geno Porter of North Charleston – Fort Dorchester. The 6-foot-1, 203-pounder was scouted personally by Dan Brooks last month. Clemson has not offered, but has been closely evaluating.
*** Anderson – T.L. Hanna standouts and Clemson pledges Martavis Bryant and Jake Nicolopulos, mentioned above on the commit list, told Tigerillustrated.com over the weekend it was their intention to arrive in town on Thursday. Both camped with the Tigers a year ago.
*** Talented Shelby (NC) Crest athlete Reggie Wilkins, who bagged a Clemson offer last month, will be arriving later in the week for the second session of camp. Clemson is in Wilkins' lead group. In addition to his tender from the Tigers, Wilkins also has offers from Colorado, N.C. State, Marshall and East Carolina. Wilkins is expected to bring two of his teammates - Taylor Crosby and Kwame Petty.
*** Jacksonville (FL) Bolles running back Jawan Jamison is scheduled to arrive in Clemson later this week. Clemson remains Jamison's lone offer. The Tigers extended the tender last fall. The 5-foot-8, 185-pound scat-back received two visits from Jeff Scott last month.
*** Another second session arrival of note is Norcross (GA) offensive tackle Max Garcia. Clemson offered in April and at that time was not in his lead group, but has since cracked Garcia's top five. The 6-foot-5, 280-pounder has been favoring Vanderbilt.
2008 Clemson Football Camp Rewind
Last June Clemson's staff bagged one verbal commit during camp week, Lake View linebacker Quandon Christian.
For a look back at a "portion" of last summer's camp blowout coverage from Tigerillustrated.com, check out 2008 Clemson Football Camp Rewind:
Bowden Camp Gallery X
Best for last
VIDEO: Christian lays the wood
Blown away in Clemson
Bowden Camp Gallery IX
Staying in control
Out of state option
Afternoon swing
Stars are out in Clemson
Bowden Camp Gallery VIII
Instate expedition for four-star lineman
Bowden Camp Gallery VII
Quandon Christian commits
Forming a bond
Bowden Camp Gallery VI
Influential offer
Three days in Clemson
Bowden Camp Gallery V
Phenomenal experience
Something to remember
Tigers jump on Motta
Bowden Camp Gallery IV
Bowden Camp Gallery III
Talent show hits Clemson
Bowden Camp Gallery II
Bowden Camp Gallery
Third QB offer in for Clemson
Bowden Camp Preview II
Bowden Camp Preview
The War Room
Insider's perspective - Part I
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