Bigger Safeties a Priority in 2006
With the new defensive staff ready for spring practice one thing they will look at is personnel and how it relates to recruiting needs for 2006. One area Clemson knows it will concentrate on heavily in 2006 is safety. Under the new scheme the Tigers will look to sign bigger safeties.
Three players Clemson has already contacted with that thought in mind are Darius Gaither, Derrick Loney and Marcus Jackson.
Gaither (6-0, 180) is a terrific athlete that could play several positions in college. At Fairfield-Central High School in Winnsboro, SC Gaither is known for his speed and athletic ability. He runs in the 4.4 range but has a frame to play close to 195-200 pounds. According to his high school coach he has heard from Clemson, USC, Tennessee, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Auburn, Alabama, Florida and many other ACC/SEC powers. Gaither is a solid student who is expected to qualify. Brad Scott is recruiting Gaither for Clemson.
Loney (6-3, 190) of Crestwood High School in Sumter, SC is another player that could play several positions. Loney is also a good speed prospect. As far as his early interest, it has come from schools like Clemson, USC, NC State, North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, etc. Dabo Swinney is recruiting Loney for Clemson.
Jackson has grabbed a lot of attention on the heels of last year’s success of C. J. Byrd at North Augusta High School in North Augusta, SC. Byrd’s former high school teammate receives rave reviews from both his high school coach and Byrd himself. “In the end he will receive more offers than I did,” said Byrd. Early interest has come from programs like Georgia, Auburn, Clemson, USC, Tennessee, Florida, etc. Ron West is recruiting Jackson for Clemson. This is another player that could play safety or linebacker at the next level.
These are three athletes that the Clemson staff will see in May and all three told us they may camp at Clemson this summer. Stay tuned for more updates on all three prospects.