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National Signing Day a success for Tiger football

Going into the 2018 National Signing Day, the Clemson football recruiting class was already stacked with some of the most talented players in the nation. Had the Tigers finished the offseason by just bringing in the likes of Trevor Lawrence, Xavier Thomas and Jackson Carman, they would have called the offseason a great success; however, Dabo Swinney and the Clemson coaching staff had a few more surprises in store. On Feb. 7, Clemson brought two more four-star players, Mario Goodrich and Justyn Ross, into the mix. 

Goodrich is a 6’ 2” 180 pound athlete out of Lee’s Summit, Missouri who chose Clemson over Nebraska and LSU, amongst others. In high school, Goodrich played wide receiver, cornerback and special teams, and he will likely see playing time in all three positions at Clemson.  

After the Tigers found out they would be losing Ray-Ray McCloud to the 2018 NFL Draft, there were questions about whether or not the Tigers could replace his athleticism and multi-faceted skill-set. Goodrich seems to be a perfect fit for the Tigers as he will look to immediately fill the niche created by McCloud this past season.

One of the biggest surprises of the day was Justyn Ross’ commitment to play for the Tigers in 2018. Ross, who is a 6’ 4”, 200 pound wide receiver out of Phenix City, Alabama, was all but guaranteed to join Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide next season. Ross is the highest rated player in the state of Alabama, and according to 247sports, 81 percent of experts projected Ross to attend Alabama. 

Ross will join Goodrich and five-star wide-out Derion Kendrick in what shapes up to be another stacked receiver class for the Tigers. The combination of Ross, Goodrich and Kendrick, in addition to current receivers Tee Higgins and Hunter Renfrow, will certainly allow Clemson to continue to live up to the “Wide Receiver-U” standard. 

With the addition of Goodrich and Ross, Clemson’s recruiting class rose from ninth in the nation to sixth while also passing Miami to claim the top recruiting class in the ACC. 

Dabo Swinney touched on the talent of this year’s class in a recent press conference when he stated, “This is the most complete class that I’ve signed since I’ve been the head coach as far as the young men walking in this building. This is a special group. On paper, this is an incredible class and

very complete.”

Part of Dabo Swinney’s message since he has arrived at Clemson has been a focus on sustained success. Clemson has been the second winningest team in college football over the past three seasons, and they are turning their success on the field into success in the offseason. This cycle of on-field success translating into top recruiting classes is reason for excitement for Tiger fans as it is the sign of a dynasty in

the making. 

While many top colleges focus solely on ability and athleticism, Swinney and his staff focus on, “recruiting championship-caliber people that just happen to be championship-caliber players.” With these types of players in locker room, the future for Clemson football is brighter

than ever. 

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