The opening of the football season led to the third commitment for Clemson for the 2020 class.
Offensive lineman John Williams (6-5, 270) of Canton, Ga., visited for the Furman game Saturday and made his commitment pledge to Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney. The offer list for Williams also included Mississippi, Tennessee, Maryland, Memphis, N.C. State, North Carolina and Wisconsin, but he said for some time the rest had been running second to Clemson.
“Clemson has been my No. 1 since I first visited when I was in 8th grade,” Williams said. “It was a no-brainer when they offered. I love the small-town feel with the big football atmosphere of the school.”
Williams camped with the Tigers in recent summers, so he has a feel for how offensive line coach Robbie Caldwell directs his crew. And Caldwell and the offensive staff also got a good read on him.
“The coaches all tell me I check all their boxes, and I am what they look for,” he said. “They like my size, my dedication to school and football and my hardworking personality. I feel like they are the best guys to take me to the next level on and off the field.”
And it’s not just the football side of things that sold Williams on Clemson.
“They walk the walk when it comes to family, faith and football,” Williams said. "Men I can really look up to.” Williams is Clemson’s first offensive line commitment for the 2020 class. The Tigers have just one committed thus for the ’19 class and are scheduled to lose seven offensive lineman over the next two seasons.
In other recruiting news:
2020 DB Luke Hill of Washington, D.C., had planned for a Friday night commitment announcement, but his team’s game got pushed to Saturday, so he postponed his announcement. He has not updated his announcement plans. Clemson appears to be in a strong place with him, and Hill said the depth chart at cornerback is something he’s closely examining among the schools.
“Yes, definitely. Playing time is a main factor, but the main thing with Coach Reed is that Clemson plays with six DBs on the field at one time,” he said. “Playing time becomes less important when you know there are six DBs because there is more opportunity.”
Hill visited Clemson earlier this summer for a camp session. He also visited Alabama. They are on his short list along with South Carolina, Florida, Maryland, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Penn State, Virginia Tech and Texas A&M.
The expected commitment announcement last Monday from DL Jaquaze Sorrells of Winter Park, Fla., didn’t materialize. He’s not been able to make a decision and will take more visits before doing so. He visited USC twice earlier this summer and has planned an official visit with the Gamecocks for Sept. 14. He also has Oregon, Alabama, LSU and Florida State in his top five. Sorrells is a former Florida commitment.
Clemson offered 2020 OL Seth McLaughlin of Buford, Ga., Saturday. He also has USC and Georgia offers.
LB/LS Seth Glausier of Jefferson, Ga., made an unofficial visit to USC on Saturday.
CB Johnny Dixon of Tampa, Fla., remains one of USC’s top targets for the 2019 class. The Gamecocks, Penn State, Miami and Florida are in touch, with the Gamecocks and Nittany Lions pushing for him the hardest at this point. Dixon took his official visit to USC in June. He has an official visit set with Penn State for Sept. 28, the weekend of the Ohio State game. He said his decision will come soon after that visit. Right now he does not have plans for a return visit to USC. He also visited Florida and Miami unofficially in late July and has not scheduled a return visit to either at this point. Dixon did not name a favorite.
OL Trevor Keegan of Crystal Lake, Ill., has his list down to Clemson, Georgia, Penn State, Michigan and Ohio State. He visited Clemson earlier in the summer and will be back this season or shortly thereafter for an official visit. Keegan said he most likely will sign in December, but he will not graduate until next spring. There is not a current leader.
DL James Middleton of Fort Dorchester and Jones County JC (Miss.) said USC continues to check up on him through his head coach at Jones, Steve Buckley. He has not talked directly with the Gamecocks since he arrived at Jones in January. He did take an unofficial visit to USC last December. Middleton said he’s doing well academically and is on track to sign in February and graduate in May. He said his hope is to be able to sign with the Gamecocks. He has four years to play three at the next level. Middleton spent his offseason rehabbing a broken leg suffered late in his senior season.
RB/LB Quavaris Crouch of Charlotte told Rivals he will visit USC unofficially for the Georgia game. He’s looking at the Duke game for his Clemson official visit, or it might take place in December. He told the website CarolinaBlitz he will also schedule official visits with Alabama, Florida State, Michigan and Southern Cal. Tennessee also remains in contention.
Clemson target OL/DE Cooper Dawson of Hanahan was offered by Vanderbilt. Dawson, who is out this season with a torn ACL, plans to visit Clemson for the Georgia Southern game. He has set official visits to UCF and Vanderbilt in November and is undecided about the other three. He said Clemson has mentioned a grayshirt to him.
USC has kept up its interest in LB Dante Walker of Ellenwood, Ga., and now with a qualifying test score according to RecruitGeorgia, he could become a bigger target.
Former Ohio State commitment LB Kane Patterson of Nashville made an unofficial visit to Clemson over the weekend. The Tigers offered Patterson last month. His father and Swinney were teammates at Alabama.
2020 WR Jalin Hyatt of Dutch Fork and 2020 WR Ze’Vian Capers of Cumming, Ga., also made visits to Clemson on Saturday. Hyatt has offers from Virginia Tech and Duke. His Clemson visit went very well and an offer could be coming soon. He’s also considering USC, Wake Forest and Virginia.
6-7 Christian Brown made his official visit to Clemson over the weekend. He’s also taken an official to UNLV and is also considering Georgia, LSU and Texas. According to a source, Brown will not return to Lower Richland for his senior season. He is looking to relocate in Georgia.
Clemson basketball coach Brad Brownell went back to his Indiana roots for a recent offer to 6-4 Alex Hemenway of Newburgh, Ind. And Brownell has a special connection in this case in that he and Hemenway’s father grew up together in Evansville.
“When they started recruiting me, it was just one of those things where you kind of felt like family,” Hemenway said. “Coach Bender is the assistant recruiting me. We’ve built a really great relationship. He’s a guy that I know that will get me better on and offer the court.”
Hemenway averaged 21 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists per game last season. He’s regarded as an excellent outside shooter, and the Tigers, he said, want him just for that.
“I make shots,” he said. “That’s one thing that they said that sticks out about me. Off the dribble. Stationary. Off ball screens. They said I’m I a shot-maker, and that’s one thing they said that they are losing, so that’s what they kind of keyed on to me. That’s the one thing they said will help them mostly.” Hemenway said right now Clemson, Creighton and Belmont are the schools recruiting him the hardest. He has not set dates for official visits, but he’s working on that and Clemson will get one. His other offers are Xavier, Butler, Nebraska, Northern Kentucky, IUPUI, Evansville and Valparaiso. A decision shouldn’t be far off.
“I’m pretty close, he said. “I know I’m hopefully going to be able to make it before the basketball season starts in November. Hopefully in a month or two I’ll be able to get that decision out the way.” Clemson has three spots left for the 2019 class and has one commitment in 6-3 Chase Hunter.
6-11 Malcolm Wilson of Ridge View made his official visit to Rice this past weekend. He visits Georgetown Sept. 14. He had planned an official to Clemson, but his assistant coach at Ridge View and his AAU coach, Christian Savage, said he won’t schedule one because he’s been there multiple times. He said Clemson remains under consideration.
Clemson remains in touch with 6-1 PG Tyrell Jones of Orlando, Fla., and they are talking about an official visit. He has set official visits with Mississippi and Louisville.
6-5 Wendell Moore of Concord, N.C., canceled his official visit to USC for Saturday, his coach told The State. Moore will take officials to the Big Four in North Carolina and choose from them.
USC target 6-7 Quincy Guerrier of Quebec has set officials to Oregon on Thursday, Syracuse on Sept. 21 and Illinois on Oct. 5, according to the IlliniInquirer. Guerrier included USC in his final 10 list he released earlier this month.
6-1 Tre Jackson of Blythewood took an official visit to Winthrop over the weekend. He also has visited Murray State.
6-2 Rickea Jackson of Detroit made her official visit with the USC women this past weekend. She’s also looking at Tennessee, Texas, Mississippi State, Rutgers, Ohio State and Louisville.
6-6 Jawun Perdue of Lakewood was offered by Austin Peay.
2020 PG Myles Tate of Dorman took an unofficial visit to USC on Saturday for the Coastal Carolina football game.
2020 6-8 PJ Hall of Dorman took an unofficial visit to Florida this past weekend. He has an offer from the Gators, plus his sister plays volleyball there.
2021 6-10 John Butler of Christ Church was offered by Clemson on Saturday while on an unofficial visit.
2021 PG Tyler Rice of Ridge View visited Penn State over the weekend and was offered by the Nittany Lions, his first offer. He’s also visited South Florida and he visited USC last October. He’s planning another unofficial visit with the Gamecocks soon.