CLEMSON FOOTBALL

Peter Woods was named the Freshman Interior Defender of the Year by one outlet.
Peter Woods was named the Freshman Interior Defender of the Year by one outlet.

2023 Clemson football awards roundup: Jeremiah Trotter, freshmen lead the way


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CLEMSON, S.C. — Linebacker Jeremiah Trotter Jr. and a talented freshman class headlined Clemson’s collection of honors during the 2023 college football award season. Trotter earned several first- and second-team All-America nods to become Clemson’s first multi-time All-American at linebacker since Keith Adams in 1999-2000, while five different Clemson freshmen garnered at least one Freshman All-America selection.

Trotter, a second-team AP All-American a year ago, garnered first-team All-America honors from both ESPN and Sports Illustrated among others in addition to a bevy of second-team selections for his performance in 2023. He was a finalist for the Butkus Award, presented annually to the nation’s top linebacker, joining Isaiah Simmons (2019), Tre Lamar (2018), Dorian O’Daniel (2017), Keith Adams (2000) and Levon Kirkland (1990) as one of six Butkus finalists in school history.

Trotter declared for the 2024 NFL Draft after compiling a team-high 88 tackles, a team-best 15.0 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks, six pass breakups, two forced fumbles and two interceptions (including one he returned 28 yards for a touchdown) in 676 snaps over 12 games (all starts) this season.

True freshmen defensive linemen T.J. Parker and Peter Woods were five Clemson freshmen who accrued Freshman All-America honors from a variety of presenting organizations. Parker earned Freshman All-American status from 247Sports, ESPN, The Athletic and others and was a Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Semifinalist as his 11.0 tackles for loss this season place him one shy of Myles Murphy’s true freshman school record. Woods earned Freshman All-America honors from 247Sports, College Football News and On3 and was named as College Football Network’s Freshman Interior Defender of the Year for his interior presence for Clemson’s seventh-ranked total defense.

True freshman safety Khalil Barnes’ impact campaign was recognized with Freshman All-America nods from On3, 247Sports, The Athletic and College Football News. Barnes’ nose for the ball made him the first Clemson freshman in the Dabo Swinney era to record multiple forced fumbles and multiple interceptions in a freshman season and the first Clemson player of any classification to reach those marks and record a sack in a season since Bashaud Breeland in 2013. In his most recent game, Barnes became the first Clemson player with a takeaway on consecutive plays from scrimmage since Pro Football Hall of Famer Brian Dawkins accomplished the feat against Duke in 1995.

True freshman wide receiver Tyler Brown and redshirt freshman Robert Gunn III also earned Freshman All-American status, with Brown collecting honors from ESPN while Gunn was named as a College Football Network Freshman All-American as a kickoff specialist. Gunn enters bowl season ranked third in the nation in kickoff average (64.57 yards per kick) and fifth in touchback percentage (84.62), and Brown’s 51 receptions placed him alongside Antonio Williams (56 in 2022), Artavis Scott (76 in 2014), Sammy Watkins (82 in 2011) and DeAndre Hopkins (52 in 2010) as one of five Clemson freshmen since 2010 to record 50-plus catches in their debut campaigns.

On Nov. 28, the Atlantic Coast Conference recognized Clemson with eight selections to its annual All-ACC Team. Tyler Davis became the fifth four-time All-ACC honoree in Clemson history, and Will Putnam earned a repeat selection after earning All-ACC honors in his first year at center in 2022. Trotter, Nate Wiggins, Barrett Carter, Jake Briningstool, Blake Miller and Ruke Orhorhoro were all first-time All-ACC selections.

CLEMSON 2023 POSTSEASON AWARDS AND HONORS

NO. 0 LB BARRETT CARTER

• Lott IMPACT Trophy Quarterfinalist

• Second-Team All-ACC

• Third-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

NO. 1 RB WILL SHIPLEY

• AFCA Good Works Team

• Wuerffel Trophy Semifinalist

• Third-Team All-ACC, Flex (College Football Network)

NO. 2 CB NATE WIGGINS

• First-Team All-ACC

• First-Team All-ACC (AP)

• First-Team All-ACC (PFF)

• First-Team All-ACC (USA Today)

• Second-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

• Blanchard-Rogers Trophy Finalist

NO. 6 WR TYLER BROWN

• First-Team Freshman All-American (ESPN)

NO. 6 CB SHERIDAN JONES

• William V. Campbell Trophy Semifinalist

NO. 7 RB PHIL MAFAH

• Third-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

NO. 9 TE JAKE BRININGSTOOL

• Second-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

• Third-Team All-ACC

NO. 11 DT PETER WOODS

• First-Team Freshman All-American (247Sports)

• First-Team Freshman All-American (College Football News)

• First-Team Freshman All-American (College Football Network)

• True Freshman All-American (On3)

• Freshman Interior Defender of the Year (College Football Network)

NO. 12 DE T.J. PARKER

• Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Semifinalist

• First-Team Freshman All-American (247Sports)

• First-Team Freshman All-American (ESPN)

• First-Team Freshman All-American (The Athletic)

• First-Team Freshman All-American (College Football News)

• First-Team Freshman All-American (College Football Network)

NO. 13 DT TYLER DAVIS

• First-Team All-ACC

• First-Team All-ACC (AP)

• First-Team All-ACC (PFF)

NO. 33 DT RUKE ORHORHORO

• Second-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

• Third-Team All-ACC

NO. 36 S KHALIL BARNES

• True Freshman All-American (On3)

• First-Team Freshman All-American, All-Purpose Defense (247Sports)

• Second-Team Freshman All-American (The Athletic)

• Second-Team Freshman All-American (College Football News)

• First-Team All-ACC, Flex (PFF)

• Third-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

NO. 38 PK ROBERT GUNN III

• Freshman All-American, Kickoff Specialist (College Football Network)

NO. 39 P AIDAN SWANSON

• Third-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

NO. 54 LB JEREMIAH TROTTER JR.

• Butkus Award Finalist

• Chuck Bednarik Award Semifinalist

• First-Team All-American (ESPN)

• First-Team All-American (Sports Illustrated)

• First-Team All-American (Action Network)

• Second-Team All-American (AFCA)

• Second-Team All-American (AP)

• Second-Team All-American (Fox Sports)

• Second-Team All-American (PFF)

• Second-Team All-American (Sporting News)

• Second-Team All-American (The Athletic)

• Second-Team All-American (USA Today)

• First-Team All-ACC

• First-Team All-ACC (AP)

• First-Team All-ACC (PFF)

• First-Team All-ACC (USA Today)

• First-Team All-ACC (College Football Network)

• Blanchard-Rogers Trophy Finalist

NO. 56 OL WILL PUTNAM

• Third-Team All-ACC

NO. 78 OL BLAKE MILLER

• Third-Team All-ACC

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