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Ten Clemson student-athletes every fan should know

Clemson+running+back+Will+Shipley+celebrates+after+an+important+play+in+the+Tigers+victory+over+Louisville+in+November%2C+2023.
Katie Bradham // Video Editor

Clemson running back Will Shipley celebrates after an important play in the Tigers’ victory over Louisville in November, 2023.

At a school as athletically dominant as Clemson, it can be hard to keep track of all the accomplishments of the hundreds of student-athletes across 19 varsity sports. Below, The Tiger has compiled a list of the top names to know in no specific order.  

Will Shipley — Shipley, a rising junior running back, has been smashing records left and right in his two years as a Tiger thus far. He rushed for 1,921 combined yards between his freshman and sophomore campaigns and earned himself a spot in the history books with Lamar Jackson, Giovani Bernard and Travis Etienne as the only ACC players in NCAA history to rush for 11 or more touchdowns in their first two seasons. Shipley also collected first-team All-ACC honors for the running back, specialist and all-purpose categories last year and is set to be a major contributor for the offense again in 2023.

PJ Hall — Hall has become the face of Clemson men’s basketball in recent years thanks to his dominance both inside and outside the paint. A member of the 1,000-point club with a career total of 1,043 so far, Hall has averaged over 15 points and five rebounds per game in his past two seasons. He improved his 3-point shooting by nearly 10% between his sophomore and junior seasons and is expected to develop even more in his senior season. 

Valerie Cagle — Clemson softball’s ace has set the standard for the four-year-old program. Cagle, this past season’s USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year, boasts a career .390 batting average, 182 RBIs and 59 homers. As a two-way player, Cagle’s prowess on the mound has also helped accelerate the Tigers to the NCAA Tournament in each year of the program’s history.

Caden Grice — Grice, the 2023 John Olerud Two-Way Player-of-the-Year award, helped lead Clemson baseball to its first ACC Championship title since 2016 this past season. In addition to being named First-Team All-American, Grice put up a 3.35 ERA on the mound, as well as 18 homers and 68 RBIs at the plate in 2023. 

Lashanna Graham — Graham specializes in long sprint hurdles and has mastered the 400. At the 2023 NCAA Outdoor Championships, Graham was the only qualifying Tiger and posted a personal-best 55.59 seconds in the 400-meter hurdles to take home sixth place and first-team All-American honors. As the Clemson track team only continues to improve under the guidance of USTFCCCA Southeast Region Men’s Coach of the Year Mark Elliot.

Barrett Carter — If you’re a wide receiver waiting to make a play in the middle of the field, the last thing you want to see is Carter’s No. 0 heading your way. The rising junior linebacker is credited with 5.5 sacks, two interceptions and 41 solo tackles in the 2022 season, where he earned a spot on the first-team All-ACC list. He and Jeremiah Trotter Jr. make up one of the nation’s top linebacker duos. 

Cam Cannarella — In only his first year playing at the collegiate level, Cannarella was one of the biggest contributors on an otherwise experienced baseball team. The ACC Freshman of the Year notched 47 RBIs and seven home runs and recorded a .388 batting average. Cannarella was recently invited to train at the elite USA Collegiate National Team Training Camp, giving him an opportunity to develop ahead of next spring.

Cade Klubnik — Klubnik became Clemson’s hero back in December when he stepped in during the ACC Championship against North Carolina and completed 83.3% of his passes for 279 yards and one touchdown, helping clinch the conference title. Klubnik ranks high on the list of Heisman odds according to several outlets, including ESPN and Sports Illustrated. And now, under the guidance of new offensive coordinator Garrett Riley, his potential is through the roof ahead of his sophomore campaign.  

Ousmane Sylla — The Dakar, Senegal native has flashed major league talent while playing under the lights at Historic Riggs Field. Last season, he led the team in goals, assists, points and game-winners, finishing third in the conference for assists and tenth for total points. The talented midfielder played 68 minutes of the Tigers’ 2021 national championship victory over Washington and is set to be a significant threat to opposing defenses this season. 

Emily Lamparter — Lamparter shined as a standout player in Clemson women’s lacrosse inaugural season. The sophomore transfer finished the season with 116 saves, helping lead the Tigers to their first winning season. The South Carolina native recorded three shutouts in 18 games. Lamparter was named IWLCA Defensive Player of the Week in March and earned an honorable mention to Inside Lacrosses’s 2023 Division 1 Midseason All-Americans. She will return for her second season to defend Clemson’s net in the spring. 

 

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Grace O'Donnell, Sports Editor
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