Despite missing out on defensive tackle Rashan Gary, the nation’s No. 1 recruit who picked Michigan, Clemson restocked it secondary with the addition of three defensive backs on Wednesday.
Clemson pulled in five defensive backs in a class of 23, including late pickups in K’von Wallace, Trayvon Mullen and Isaiah Simmons. That trio should get long looks in fall camp with so many open spots in the defensive backfield.
Clemson is losing safeties Jayron Kearse and T.J. Green, and cornerback Mackensie Alexander. All are leaving early for the NFL Draft.
“We had to start making calls,” Clemson coach Swinney said.
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Wallace picked Clemson over Ohio State and Michigan State among others. Mullen had offers from LSU and Florida State while Simmons’ offers included Michigan and Nebraska.
Clemson’s class ranked eighth overall in rankings by ESPN.com.
“I kinda had it set when I stepped on that campus,” Mullen said. “My decision was kinda made, but then again, I was second-guessing myself. I just took the time to think it over myself. To make sure it was the decision I would make. Every day I woke up Clemson was in my head. In my heart – I just rolled with Clemson.”
“It’s an opportunity. I love the program. When I first stepped on campus I felt love. The environment – I just felt like it could be a place I could be successful. All those other schools are great schools – but Clemson is just different. They’re my dream school growing up and that just came with it. Just that feeling – I just went with my heart.
Swinney said of Mullen: “We’re losing a great, great corner also from Florida in Mackensie Alexander. He’s going to be a great pro. To be able to go back down to Florida and get a great young man like Trayvon Mullen who is one of the best in the country. He’s a long corner. Big, big, big get for us here.”
Gary, from Paramus Catholic High School in New Jersey, announced his decision on ESPN.
Gary’s final decision came down to Clemson and Michigan, and the Wolverines were long the presumptive favorite in the race.
At 6-foot-5, 292 pounds, Gary is the rarest of recruits — an interior defensive lineman with elite athleticism.