Re: Interesting Recruiting Breakdown
Posted: Feb 3, 2012 2:04 PM
I can't believe I'm going to get sucked this far into it, but here we go. I don't like pure conjecture and that is what you are doing. "Huge advantage" and "big" disparity at the line is ridiculous when neither team has gone through spring training yet. As much as it pains me, South Carolina has excellent depth and as long as they are able to continue to sign roughly 125 players every 5 years to fill 85 slots then that is going to remain the case. You redshirted 21 players last year if the talk radio folks are right. You're in no danger of being bad anytime soon. But Clemson doesn't need to hang it's head about the offensive and defensive lines this year. While we're losing some veterans it was largely a rag tag bunch. But here is an honest head to head look at next years line play and my opinion of the matchup:
LT - Brandon Thomas v. Mike Matulius (slight edge Clemson) LG - Tyler Shatley v AJ Cann (push) C - Dalton Freeman v. TJ Johnson (edge to Clemson) RG - unfilled v. Ronald Patrick (edge Carolina - Patrick saw limited action, Clemson will be picking from 1 of 3 3* redshirt players or a true freshman to fill this spot) RT - Gifford Timothy v. Cody Gibson (slight edge Carolina)
DE - Malliciah Goodman v. Devin Taylor (push) DT - unfilled v. Jerideau (edge Carolina) DT - Deshawn Williams v. Quarles (push) DE - Corey Crawford v. Clowney (edge Carolina)
Carolina's defense returns 46 games experience with 19 starts and 111 tackles from 2011. Clemson will return 39 games experience with 14 starts and 100 tackles. Neither includes bowl games. Again, not the dramatic difference everyone seems to think.
While I concede you go into spring training with an edge on the line it is not the monstrous gap you and even some Clemson fans seem to believe. And one injury or one breakout freshman/redshirt season could either flip the tables or put Clemson in a serious hole.