Clemson Tigers head football coach Dabo Swinney recently complained– prior to signing a three-year extension which will carry him through 2017– that talk about the school’s possible move from the ACC to another conference was damaging recruiting and the program’s reputation.
Apparently, this was just smoke and mirrors, as the presumptive top recruit in the 2013 class, Logan, Georgia defensive end Robert Nkedmiche has committed to the Tigers.
Nkedmiche’s announcement was a huge surprise to the college football community and is further proof of the positive impact Swinney has had and is having on the Clemson football program in spite of the occasional barb from his detractors.
A 6’5″, 265 freak athlete, Nkedmiche chose Clemson over SEC programs including Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, and basically the rest of the conference.
Nkedmiche is drawing early comparisons to South Carolina Gamecocks star end Jadeveon Clowney, who was the top recruit in the country at the same position in 2011.
Nkedmiche has the same massive frame and brut strength as Clowney, and once he grows into his body and continues to develop what is already impressive upper and lower-body strength should be a terror for ACC offensive coordinators for several years at Clemson.
There could be a potential gray lining to this silver cloud, however.
In spite of Nkedmiche’s verbal decision to attend Clemson in the fall of 2013, given the number of suitors he has across the country it’s assumed he will wait until National Signing Day in February of 2013 to make his formal announcement.
Regardless of the fact that Clemson has a verbal commitment from Nkedmiche, you have to figure they will continue to forge his allegiance and make sure that others who could swoop in and take him away don’t have the access or ability to do so.
As we’ve seen recently with Ricky Seals-Jones’ de-commitment from the Texas Longhorns, nothing’s a done deal until it’s a done deal.
Kris Hughes is the College Football Network Manager for Rant Sports and a member of the Football Writers Association of America.
Kris is also the host of Rant Sports Radio on the Blog Talk Radio Network Wednesday evenings at 8 Central Time.