Nation's number two corner says Clemson "is just different"


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Mullen says early playing time was a factor in his decision
Mullen says early playing time was a factor in his decision

Clemson’s 2016 recruiting class got a big boost Wednesday morning when 4-star cornerback Trayvon Mullen of Coconut Creek (FL) committed to the Tigers over Florida St. and LSU during a ceremony at his high school.

ESPN has Mullen ranked as the number two cornerback nationally and number 18 overall in ESPN’s 300. Clemson lost five defensive backs after the loss to Alabama in the title game in early January, presenting an opportunity for Mullen to play sooner rather than later.

“Basically the opportunity. I love the program,” Mullen said. “When I first stepped on the campus I just felt love. I just felt like that is a place I could go and be successful. Not turning my back on all the other schools, all the other schools are great schools. It's just different when I stepped on Clemson's campus. Being my dream school growing up, that carried along with me and played a big role. Just that feeling when I stepped on the campus. I just went with my heart.”

The Army All-American looked to be a Florida St. lean early in the process – his mother wasn’t shy about saying she wanted her son to be a Seminole – but he also considered LSU. He took visits to Louisville, Clemson, and LSU in the last month, and many thought LSU was the favorite after the Bayou Tigers got Mullen’s final official visit.

However, the Tigers lost a total of five members of the secondary in the last month – safeties Jayron Kearse and T.J. Green opted to leave early for the NFL while backup safety Jefferie Gibson transferred out of the program. Cornerback Mackensie Alexander also opted for the NFL. Travis Blanks – who played the hybrid nickel/SAM position – decided to end his Clemson career a year early and he will also see what the NFL has to offer.

The losses created the chance for early playing time that Mullen had been looking for.

“I feel like I can come in and have an impact. I feel like next year we will be back in the national championship,” he said. “I feel like I will play a big role in that defense. I feel like I can come in right away and do what I have to do, stay focused, grind, and I will be the next person to lead Clemson.”

Mullen said he knew Clemson would be his next home during his January official visit, but he needed to take his time and think it over. Clemson still won out.

“I kind of had a sense when I stepped on that campus. My decision was kind of made, but then again I was kind of second-guessing myself,” he said. “So I kind of took the time out to think it over. I had time to myself and made sure that was the decision I wanted to make. Every day I woke up Clemson was in my head. Clemson was in my heart. So I just rolled with Clemson.”

The Tigers have added three secondary prospects in the last two days – 4-star safety Isaiah Simmons out of Olathe (KS) Olathe North committed to Clemson Tuesday evening while 3-star defensive back K’Von Wallace out of Highland Springs (VA) committed to Clemson shortly after Mullen.









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