Easy Sell, Tough Competition
|Monday, May 2, 2016, 9:41 AM- -|
Easy Sell, Tough Competition
Clemson's football staff is on the road recruiting once again this week, so the next phase of the hard work of assembling future classes has begun. I spoke with one staff member who said he went to 45 schools last week. These guys put in a relentless effort and the travel and time can be exhausting.
In many ways, their job is easier than ever, though. One coach told me last week how the Clemson brand has grown to the point where kids get excited when they see a Clemson coach walk the halls in their school. The Tiger Paw is on the shirt gets people's attention.
This has usually been the case inside the state of South Carolina, but now this happens when the staff makes visits to states all over the country. A Clemson visit or a Clemson offer has clout.
When the staff visits these high school coaches and players, they are armed with more positives than ever. The graduation rate is phenomenal. The APR is in the top ten in the nation. The program is winning titles, playing for more titles and is one of the top five power programs in the country. The facilities are great and getting even better with the new football operations building. The support is amazing. Death Valley is one of the top places to play. Clemson players win awards and are getting drafted at a higher rate than ever before.
So, in many ways the sell to prospects and high school coaches is easier than ever. However, the competition is tougher than ever too.
Clemson should beat NC State, UNC, Virginia Tech and other schools they used to compete against regularly. At this point, the sell against South Carolina, Tennessee and Florida are pretty easy as well.
The difficulty now is that the program has elevated to the point where it competes more against Alabama, Florida State, Georgia and Ohio State. These types of national programs have checked a lot of boxes as well. Their facilities are top notch. Their players are drafted at a high rate. They have great support.
So competing against the old completion is easier than ever. But when you compete for top 100 players against powers, you have to stay on top of your game. As a result, Clemson is now recruiting the kind of athlete that can afford to wait deeper into the process. Have you ever noticed that schools like FSU and Alabama go into signing day waiting on eight or so players? Maybe this is what Clemson is in line for in the next few years.
The Brad Hughes All-State Insurance Agency
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