Two more members of the Clemson defense are leaving the program with eligibility remaining. Multi-position standing Isaiah Simmons had already said he would enter the NFL Draft after this season, so he just made things official Saturday night on Twitter. And reserve defensive tackle Xavier Kelly announced he will move on elsewhere as a grad transfer.
Simmons, who arrived at Clemson as a 3-star prospect, will go down as one of the top defenders ever produced by the program. The Kansas native is a high first round draft projection coming of a season in which he earned unanimous All-American honors, the ACC Defensive Player of the Year Award and the Dick Butkus Award.
Simmons, who at various times played linebacker, safety and cornerback, had 104 tackles this season with 16.5 for loss and 8 sacks. He also intercepted 3 passes and deflected 8.
Take a chance, because you never know how perfect something can turn out pic.twitter.com/nG7AzrCHJt— Isaiah Simmons (@isaiahsimmons25) January 18, 2020
Kelly, like Simmons as native of Kansas, was a 4-star defensive end recruit and the top ranked player in Kansas as a high school senior by the 247Sports composite. But his career at Clemson never got off the ground. He did not redshirt and was moved to defensive tackle where he served as a reserve. In his three seasons he only appeared in 13 games registering 22 tackles and 2.5 sacks.
God’s plan🙏 pic.twitter.com/OAbVmXJR6F— xavier kelly (@xavierkelly22) January 18, 2020