CLEMSON FOOTBALL

The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
Clemson coach Dabo Swinney will have to navigate as complicated a roster numbers scenario as he has with the Tigers.

The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?


by - Senior Writer -

The transfer portal is burning up. The question is, will Clemson jump on board?

Quarterbacks DJ Uiagalelei and Billy Wiles, defensive end Kevin Swint, running back Kobe Pace, wide receivers Dacari Collins and EJ Williams, cornerback Fred Davis, and linebackers Vonta Bentley and Sergio Allen have all announced their intentions to enter the portal. Monday was the first day that players could actually enter their names into the portal, and they have a 45-day window to do so.

No, we don’t expect any of them to play in the bowl game. Yes, they could withdraw from the portal, but that seems like a longshot at this point.

So how many holes does Clemson have to fill? That’s a hard question to answer, and even the coaches don’t know at this point. As it stands today, with the transfers who have declared and the seniors we know are leaving and staying, the roster stands at 75 scholarships. Add in the 13 seniors, and that takes it to 62. Now, that doesn't include juniors who might declare (like Myles Murphy or Bryan Bresee). Also, Joseph Ngata, Davis Allen, Tyler Davis, Justin Mascoll, Xavier Thomas, Sheridan Jones and Jalyn Phillips (who are seniors) have another year should they take it. So, if you assume they are all gone, and add the 23 commits to date, that is 85 scholarships. If that group all returns, that puts you well over the scholarship limit (but that won't happen, of course).

That means the situation is fluid, and Clemson's coaching staff will have a better idea after the bowl game when all of the underclassmen declare their intentions.

I would put the over/under at five at this point, with underclassmen and more transfers after the bowl. Could be four or five. Could be seven or eight. And some of those spots, if the coaches know early enough, could be filled on the recruiting trail because there is another National Signing Day in February.

What are some positions that might need some help from the portal? Let’s take a look.

*Quarterback – With the departures of Wiles and Uiagalelei and the graduation of Hunter Johnson, Klubnik and Hunter Helms are the only ones with any experience, and it’s very limited. Trent Pearman redshirted this year and the Tigers are bringing in Christopher Vizzina in this signing class, but that is just four players (three on scholarship), and none with much real world experience. They could use an experienced hand here, but it has to be someone that is either (A. content to fight Klubnik for the starting spot, or (B. understands that he is there for insurance, like Johnson this season.

*Running back – Clemson is short here, too. Maybe. With the loss of Pace, that leaves Will Shipley and Phil Mafah as the lone returners with experience (Freshman Keith Adams has played a few snaps, and Domonique Thomas has also played a few). Clemson is looking at two on the recruiting trail with Christopher Johnson and Jamarius Haynes. The early word was that Clemson was taking only one running back this cycle, but the loss of Pace might change that to two. If they do, and land just one of those two targets, they might go into the portal for a guy. Or, and there is a good chance of this, they might land both of those guys.

*Wide receiver – Clemson has talent here, and has three freshmen they love in Adam Randall, Antonio Williams, and Cole Turner. The Tigers also have three incoming freshmen in Ronan Hanafin, Noble Johnson, and Tyler Brown. Returning are Beaux Collins, Brannon Spector, Will Taylor, and Troy Stellato. Ngata has another year if he wants it, but if you don’t count him, the Tigers are still at 10 scholarships, which is right at the number Clemson likes to carry. Stellato and Taylor are two we don’t know their intentions. Stellato has been on campus two years and battled injuries, and I haven’t heard what he plans to do. Taylor might decide to just play baseball, which is where his future is anyway. There could be an open spot. And there might not (see how this is going?).

*Tight end and offensive line – The Tigers appear to be in good shape on both fronts. On the OL, with the return of Will Putnam, Tristan Leigh, Marcus Tate, Walker Parks, Blake Miller, Mitchell Mayes, Collin Sadler, Dietrick Pennington, Trent Howard, Ryan Linthicum, Bryn Tucker, and John Williams, that makes an even dozen. The Tigers are also bringing in three in recruiting (and maybe a fourth), the numbers are solid. Right now, there is no attrition. Will it be that way after the bowl game?

*Defensive end – This appears to be a spot where the portal would come in handy. We don’t know what will happen with Myles Murphy, and KJ Henry is expected to leave. Xavier Thomas is mulling a return, and while Justin Mascoll ran down the hill on Senior Day, it wouldn’t be a shock to see him return. If all those players leave, and that’s a possibility, the Tigers return a whopping 53 snaps at the end spot with Cade Denhoff, Jahiem Lawson, Greg Williams, and Zaire Patterson. Would it shock me if one or more of them leave? It wouldn’t. The Tigers are bringing in David Ojiegbe, Tomarrion Parker, and AJ Hoffler. Another body, or several, has to be in the plans. Especially someone with experience.

I think the Tigers are ok at defensive tackle – Bryan Bresee, Tyler Davis, and Ruke Orhorhoro all can leave, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see two of those stay. Add in Etinosa Reuben, Tré Williams, Payton Page, DeMonte Capehart, and Caden Story, and the Tigers are stacked.

*Linebacker – The loss of Bentley and the presumed loss of Trenton Simpson leaves the Tigers with Keith Maguire, Jeremiah Trotter, Barrett Carter, Wade Woodaz, Kobe McCloud and TJ Dudley. They are bringing in 4-stars Dee Crayton and Jamal Anderson as signees. If there is no more attrition, you would think the coaches might add one more, but the Tigers are stacked at this spot. Would have to be someone who understands a role, like at quarterback or running back at Clemson.

*Defensive backs – With Jalyn Phillips potentially, there are six safeties and Robert Billings (recruit) makes seven. Another spot where the Tigers are in good shape with Tyler Venables, Sherrod Covil, Andrew Mukuba, RJ Mickens, and Kylon Griffin. The numbers are good here, as well. At corner, the Tigers could lose Sheridan Jones, but have Malcolm Greene, Nate Wiggins, Jeadyn Lukus, Toriano Pride, and Myles Oliver on campus with Misun Kelley, Shelton Lewis, Kylen Webb, Avieon Terrell and Branden Strozier on the way. And some of these guys can play safety/nickel as well. The numbers are strong.

*Specialists – Clemson has two punters on campus in Aidan Swanson and Jack Smith, and Robert Gunn is in line to be the kicker. Gunn is healed up and should be ready to go, so I don’t expect any movement here unless something happens.

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Tags: Clemson Football, DJ Uiagalelei, Billy Wiles, Kevin Swint, Kobe Pace, Dacari Collins, EJ Williams, Sergio Allen, Myles Murphy, Bryan Bresee, Joseph Ngata, Davis Allen, Tyler Davis, Justin Mascoll, Xavier Thomas, Jalyn Phillips, Hunter Johnson, Hunter Helms, Trent Pearman, Will Shipley, Phil Mafah, Keith Adams, Domonique Thomas, Adam Randall, Antonio Williams, Cole Turner, Beaux Collins, Brannon Spector, Will Taylor, Troy Stellato, Will Putnam, Tristan Leigh, Marcus Tate, Walker Parks, Blake Miller, Mitchell Mayes, Collin Sadler, Dietrick Pennington, Trent Howard, Ryan Linthicum, Bryn Tucker, John Williams, KJ Henry, Cade Denhoff, Greg Williams, Zaire Patterson, Ruke Orhorhoro, Etinosa Reuben, Payton Page, Caden Story, Trenton Simpson, Keith Maguire, Barrett Carter, Wade Woodaz, Kobe McCloud, TJ Dudley, Tyler Venables, Andrew Mukuba, RJ Mickens, Kylon Griffin, Sheridan Jones, Malcolm Greene, Nate Wiggins, Jeadyn Lukus, Toriano Pride, Myles Oliver, Aidan Swanson, Jack Smith, Robert Gunn , Keith Adams
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Subject (Replies: 41) Author
spacer TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
TigerNet News®
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
CUAg98
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
jpvenez
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
jstone D329
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
Furmanoid
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
ddraines®
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
clipboardjesus11
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
jpvenez
spacer I think we need to take a look at the punter from the Dr.
Lakedude®
spacer With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
76er®
spacer Williams was a redshirt freshman I believe
striperfan
spacer Re: Williams was a redshirt freshman I believe
allorangeallthetime52®
spacer Re: Williams was a redshirt freshman I believe
prescotttiger®
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
jhayes5
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
allorangeallthetime52®
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
tigerphils
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
fcg
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
kinley
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
Clemgalalways®
spacer Re: With all the problems at wide receiver, we really need our
CU1976
spacer We have some flexibility with backend players that helps
Anonymous08®
spacer I really believe we'll see an improvement with Cade
ClemfanWV
spacer So no philosophical change? Got it.
Clemson_Orange
spacer What starters are you looking to replace?
striperfan
spacer Re: So no philosophical change? Got it.
allorangeallthetime52®
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
Valley Boy
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
magicman
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
kinley
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
fchrisgrimm
spacer A certain someone isn't going to like this....***
Anonymous08®
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
HumbleServant®
spacer took dabo 13
tgrfan42069
spacer unstubborn******
tgrfan42069
spacer Hopefully we are trying to out recruit what we already have. I’d love to see
colberttiger®
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
RaleighTiger79
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
ClemsonSteve®
spacer So...
dacoach
spacer Re: So...
magicman
spacer Re: So...
dacoach
spacer Re: So...
fchrisgrimm
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
tigerrag86
spacer Re: TNET: The Transfer Portal: Where do the Tigers stand and where would the Tigers look?
ProtoTiger