Boyd picks Tigers over Buckeyes and Ducks

by - Senior Writer -

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney’s first recruiting class took on a little different look on Tuesday afternoon when Hampton, Va., quarterback Tajh Boyd announced his intention to play for the Tigers.

Boyd is a five-star recruit who is ranked as the No. 4 quarterback in the country by and as the No. 4 pro-style quarterback by He was named co-MVP of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl earlier this month, and picked the Tigers over Ohio St. and Oregon.

Boyd announced his choice at a press conference at his school at 5 p.m. Tuesday.

“I just felt like this was the right school for me,” he said. “At first I had it down to Oregon and Ohio State, but it’s just the support and staff that they have over there. I feel like I’ll come in and have a chance to compete early and once I have my surgery.”

A month ago, Clemson was not listed as one of Boyd’s top destinations, but Swinney and his staff made a late push that included an official visit by Boyd and his family on Jan. 16, then an in-home visit by Swinney, offensive coordinator Billy Napier and tight ends coach Danny Pearman on Monday. Clemson was the only school to have an in-home meeting with Boyd, and must have made a good impression.

“At first I didn’t think I was going to consider Clemson,” Boyd said. “Then I got a chance to learn more about the coaches and what type of team they’re going to have and how they are going to involve me in the offense. It’s been tough saying no to those other schools because those two schools are so great,” he said.

Boyd capped off his senior season for Phoebus High with a 15-0 record and Virginia state title. He had earlier committed to West Virginia, but later said that the style of offense run by the Mountaineers did not fit his style. Then on Nov. 1, he verbally committed to the University of Tennessee, but pulled out of that a month later after head coach Phillip Fulmer was let go.

He had always been considered one of the best dual threat quarterbacks in the nation, but the spotlight on him shone a little brighter after he completed 7-of-9 passes for a game-record 188 yards and three touchdowns in the All-American Bowl.

Boyd said one of the criteria for picking a school was the chance at early playing time, and Clemson having no set starter, seems to be a good fit. However, Boyd is scheduled to have knee surgery on his torn ACL on Wednesday and could be facing a redshirt year.

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