Clemson signed the No. 7 recruiting class in the country in 2018, according to the 247Sports composite rankings. The Tigers signed two of the top three players in the nation in Trevor Lawrence and Xavier Thomas and have several freshmen that could make an immediate impact.
Here is a look at five freshmen likely to see the field in 2018:
QB Trevor Lawrence – The top overall recruit for the class of 2018, Lawrence is too talented to keep off the field. The Georgia native looked like the best quarterback on Clemson’s roster during the spring game when he completed 11 of 16 passes for 122 yards and a touchdown. Lawrence is battling senior Kelly Bryant for the starting job, but even if he starts the year as a backup, he should get plenty of opportunities to play during the season.
WR Justyn Ross – The No. 1 recruit in the state of Alabama, Ross chose the Tigers over Alabama and Auburn. He is aiming to be the next great receiver at Clemson, and he has all of the tools to do so. Ross is fast, physical, athletic and has great hands. He should fit in nicely with fellow receivers Hunter Renfrow, Tee Higgins, Amari Rodgers and others.
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WR Derion Kendrick – Another receiver, Kendrick was on campus this spring and was being compared to former Tigers stars Sammy Watkins and DeAndre Hopkins. He played quarterback in high school but has everything it takes to be a great receiver. The former South Pointe star can help Clemson as a wideout and a returner in 2018.
DE Xavier Thomas – Clemson has a strong starting defensive front with four potential first-round picks, but the Tigers don’t have a ton of depth after having some unexpected departures during the offseason. Thomas was rated as the No. 3 overall prospect in the country and was compared by some to Jadeveon Clowney coming out of high school. He should be able to help the Tigers this season, particularly in pass-rushing situations.
DB Kyler McMichael – The Georgia native was rated as a top 100 prospect nationally by all of the recruiting services and was viewed as one of the top cornerbacks in the country. Brent Venables’ biggest concern for this season is depth at cornerback, and McMichael should be able to provide that. McMichael can be at least a special teams contributor in 2018 and can also give Trayvon Mullen, Mark Fields and A.J. Terrell an occasional breather.