Braden Galloway looks to make a splash as August camp starts
|Friday, August 3, 2018, 7:01 AM- -|
SUNSET – Danny Pearman has a veteran group of tight ends, but it might just be the new kid in the room who makes the biggest impact.
Pearman – who is in his 10th season as Clemson’s tight end’s coach – has his most experienced group to date, but Seneca’s Braden Galloway could be the missing piece to a group that failed to make a splash in 2017.
“We have a good nucleus of kids starting with Milan. He has another year under his belt. He's worked hard and is back for his senior campaign,” Pearman said recently at head coach Dabo Swinney’s media golf outing. “We have a healthy Garrett Williams back, which is an added bonus. He's done a good job, especially this summer. You have Cannon Smith who is back for his senior campaign and has played a lot of football for us. You have J.C. Chalk who is kind of coming on as far getting an opportunity to play.
“Then, we have a freshman Braden Galloway who has done really well. He's been with us since January and I expect a lot of good things out of him. Then, we have another young man who just joined our team in J.L. Banks. That's kind of our nucleus of kids. I don't know that our room has ever been more consistent top to bottom since I've been here as far as being able to have good players, really good kids and leaders. It's a really exciting group to be around.”
Galloway – who arrived at Clemson at 6-6, 225 pounds and weighed in on Thursday at 241 pounds – reminds Pearman and many onlookers of an older, more physically mature Jordan Leggett, who left as one of Clemson’s most prolific tight ends.
“He can be a similar guy (to Leggett),” Pearman said. “He's kind of that same mold and body type and athleticism. I look forward to giving him the opportunity to do that.”
The former high school quarterback missed most of spring practice because of a foot injury but showed flashes what coaches and fans could expect.
“I think he can play this season. It'll be up to him how he progresses this August camp,” he said. “I look forward to him helping us. I hope he's healthy. That's kind of a recurring thing now. He had it in high school and had it fixed and came back and had to have it redone when he was with us in January, so it set him back a little bit during the spring. He was only able to actually participate the last week full-go, but he's had no problem with it since then.”
However, his athleticism and raw ability are undeniable.
“I was cautiously optimistic after he joined us in January. Here's a kid who has only been a basketball kid most of his life and played a little bit of high school football then joined us,” he said. “I've been really encouraged and impressed with not only his athleticism, but his pick up of the offense, his ability to block takes some work. He's a willing kid. He's a tough kid and really got a grasp of what we're trying to do this spring. I'm really looking forward to camp with him to see how much he progressed this summer on his own and to see what all he's retained from the spring.”