LB Owen Pappoe (6-0 211) is the next big thing out of one of Georgia’s strongest programs, Grayson High in Loganville. He’s regarded as one of the best linebackers in the country. He has set May 5th for his commitment date and Clemson remains in contention.
“The one thing they always say to me is come be a part of the family,” said Pappoe who visited Clemson last month. “I’ve been over there a couple of times unannounced and every time I go over there they let me know they want me to be a part of the family. I feel comfortable over there. My parents love it over there, too. It’s just a comfortable place.”
Pappoe talks a lot with Clemson linebackers coach Brent Venables and he’s told him precisely how he would fit in to his defense.
“Where they played Dorian O’Daniel, that’s exactly where they see me fit in their defense,” he said. “I’ll be able to extend my game a lot. I like to play in space, I make tackles all over the field, I’m sideline to sideline and I’d fit perfect in their defense.”
One advantage Clemson has over the rest is the presence of safeties coach Mickey Conn on the staff. Before coming to Clemson he was the head coach at Grayson.
“That’s a big pull, he’s always talking to me all the time,” Pappoe said. “I started all my freshmen year on varsity and that was the last year he coached for us and he told me, ‘I only got to coach you one year but I know the player that you are and the player that you can be.’ He tells me all the time that Clemson would fit me and that it would be a place where I can expand not only as a football player but as a man.”
Pappoe also has been to Tennessee, Georgia, Auburn and Alabama and is trying to get to LSU. He has set an official visit to Texas for April 27th and he also wants to visit Ohio State. He wants to take more official visits before his announcement and he will take others after it.
While he said he’s still open on a final decision, Pappoe admitted, “I have an idea about which school it’s going to be.” He will sign and graduate early.
Last season Pappoe totaled 83 tackles with 7 sacks.