Clemson landed a top 15 recruiting class on National Signing Day, but also added major players to its 2015 class with one of the top offensive linemen in the country and a quarterback with eye-popping numbers.
Offensive lineman Mitch Hyatt (6-6, 265) of Suwanee, Ga., announced his commitment to Clemson. He attended Clemson's junior day earlier this month but was well on his way to a Clemson commitment before that. He's been around the school a great deal as his uncle, Dan Benish, played for the Tigers in the 1980s.
"I just want to get it over with so I can focus on having the best season and helping my teammates," Hyatt said last week."
Hyatt's coach, Bob Sphire, said the junior lineman will make an impact at the college level.
"He is old school tough with modern-day athleticism," Sphire said. "Physically, he is very gifted and very athletic for having that kind of size."
Quarterback Tucker Israel (5-11, 195) of Orlando, Fla., also committed to the Tigers last week. Clemson plans have two quarterbacks in the 2015 class.
"What coach (Chad) Morris was telling me was they got back into meetings and they watched all of the videos of recruits that were on the board and they kept going back to me," Israel said. "They thought they really wanted me and they want me to be their guy. I know that I'm going to a place where I'm going to be loved and have a family."
Some of his other offers include Florida, Indiana, Memphis, South Florida, Akron and Cincinnati. Last season, Israel passed for nearly 4,000 yards with 40 touchdowns. He passed for a combined 66 touchdowns in his freshman and sophomore seasons.
In other recruiting news:
South Carolina quarterbacks coach GA Mangus has been busy checking out future prospects for the Gamecocks and he has handed out two more offers, one for 2015 and one for 2016. Mangus' most recent offer for a 2015 quarterback went to Lamar Jackson (6-2, 185) of Boynton Beach, Fla.
Jackson also has offers from Clemson, Nebraska, Florida State, Syracuse, Utah State and Akron. He is one of four 2015 quarterbacks claiming USC offers at this point. The others are Brandon Wimbush of Jersey City, N.J,, Kelly Bryant of Wren and Kevin Johnson of Atlanta.
Mangus has also offered sophomore Brandon McIlwain (6-1, 195) of Newtown, Penn. Boston College and Temple have also offered McIlwain. His father attended USC.
Former Alabama RB Alvin Kamara of Norcross, Ga., who is transferring after one season at Alabama, is not planning to enroll quickly at another school. Kamara told 247Sports he won't do that until the summer. Kamara has withdrawn from Alabama and is back in Georgia working out. He visited Clemson for their junior day and reportedly also has interest in UCLA and others.
Offensive lineman Chuma Edoga of Powder Springs, Ga., has Clemson in his top six at this point along with Florida State, Georgia, Ohio State, Tennessee and Texas A&M.
Though he is committed to Florida Atlantic, running back Jordan Scarlett (5-11, 205) of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., will take an official visit to USC. He has offers from USC, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Miami, Georgia, Georgia Tech and Nebraska among others.
"The only schools I'm interested in out-of-state are South Carolina, Ohio State and Wisconsin," Scarlett said. He also plans to visit USC for a junior day in the near future.
"I'm building a good relationship with (USC assistant) Everett Sands and he is telling me a lot of good things," he said. "It's a good program and there is an opportunity to play early there."
As far as in-state schools that Scarlett is interested in, he named Florida Atlantic, Florida, Florida State and Central Florida.
Running back Reggie Gallaspy (5-11, 220) of Greensboro, N.C., was not at Clemson's recent junior day and plans to visit in March. He's also going to Auburn for a junior day in April. Duke, N.C. State, North Carolina, West Virginia and Virginia continue to be his top five in that order. An offer from the Tigers could stir things up for Gallaspy. Other schools showing interest are UCLA, California, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Mississippi State, Florida and Florida State.
Tight end Garrett Williams of Orlando, Fla., made his sixth trip to Clemson for the Tigers' junior day.
"It went great like it always does," he said. "I like it every time I'm there. I got to hang out and talk to the coaches. They were just telling me how important my position is to this class and how they want me to go there."
With over 20 offers, Williams is starting to shorten his list, but he is not ready to release it. Next up is North Carolina to be followed by Florida State. As far as USC, Williams said they visited him recently but there is still no offer from the Gamecocks. The offers he does have include Clemson, Florida State, North Carolina, Tennessee, Auburn, Ohio State, Louisville, Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Florida, Georgia Tech, Ole Miss and Duke.
Shamiek Sheppard (6-6) of Fishburne Prep in Virginia is now favoring USC after taking an official visit with the Gamecocks last week.
Sheppard said he plans to make a final decision by the end of February. "It was a great experience, a beautiful campus and the fans are just phenomenal," said Sheppard, who is a native of New York City.
Sheppard is averaging over 17 points and 11 rebounds per game this season.
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