Dutch Fork will feature a pair of wide receivers this season in Antonio Williams and Jalen Hyatt who are as talented as any receivers you’ll find in the country. The question for the defending 5A champions is who is going to get them the ball.
Rising senior Davin Patterson played sparingly behind starter Will Taylor last season. Joining the program this spring was 2023 prospect Aliam Appler (6-5 195), a transfer from New Hanover High School in Wilmington, NC. Not much is known about Appler as a thrower. His team played just four games in the spring and most of the time he turned and handed the ball off to a running back.
This month, Appler has gotten out to show college coaches what his arm is like. He spent a day at USC camp Friday, and he was at Clemson for two days on Saturday and Sunday.
“It was really nice. The facilities are really cool,” Appler said of his first trip to USC. “I got to get out and visit with the quarterback coach, which was really nice. I got to see the weight room and the locker room and all that stuff. I like South Carolina a lot. Overall, it was a really good camp. I liked it. I wasn’t able to talk to the head coach there. I know one of the recruiters and he’s sent me a couple of invites to their camps.”
Appler has been to Clemson before, so he was more familiar with how things work in the Upstate, and there’s some familiarity with head coach Dabo Swinney and quarterbacks coach Brandon Streeter.
“Clemson is always awesome,” Appler said. “Their facilities are amazing. Their coaches are really cool because they will just talk to you. Dabo still remembers me from a couple of the camps I’ve been to. He’ll just come up and talk to me, which is really cool, just like the quarterback coach Streeter.”
Saturday at Clemson was not a good day to be a quarterback not named Arch Manning. The nation’s top-rated quarterback in the ’23 class was on display, and he definitely overshadowed Appler and the other quarterbacks in the building. But Appler said at the same time it was a good opportunity for him to be judged against one of the best.
“I was seen on Saturday and threw well with the four and five stars,” Appler said. “Arch clearly did show out. I have nothing but respect for the guy. I appreciated being in the group with them because as an unknown, people got to see me too. Sunday there were still some great QBs there, too.”
As for Clemson and a potential offer, Appler said there’s been no indication of that at this point, but it’s still early for him.
“I’m just not expecting much because I don’t want that to be my focus going into the season,” Appler said. “I’m trying not to get wrapped up in who is getting offers and who is not. I am confident my time will come. If I were to get offered, it probably would be senior year. I’m not trying to focus on that right now. They know who I am. Streeter follows me on Twitter, so he follows what I do. I’ll take it.”
Appler is going to camp at Wake Forest on Saturday and North Carolina Sunday. He has not been offered but said Toledo has been showing decent interest.
LB Abdul Carter, who took an official visit with USC this week, was offered by the Gamecocks Wednesday night.
Five-star LB Drayk Bowen (6-2 215) of Merrillville, IN visited Clemson Wednesday. He’s ranked the #1 linebacker nationally in his class in the 247Sports Composite. This month he’s also been to Notre Dame, Michigan, Tennessee and Ole Miss. Later this month he will visit Alabama, Auburn and LSU.
The father of 2023 DE Matayo Uiagalelei, brother of Clemson quarterback DJ Uiagalelei, had high praise for Alabama Wednesday after a visit with Nick Saban. In a tweet, Big Dave Uiagalelei wrote: “I’m not going to lie, and I’m just being honest, after my meeting with Nick Saban, I can honestly see Matayo suiting up for Alabama. It’s something about a father recognizing and respecting another father’s hard work and love for their kids. Nick Saban gets it, some coaches don’t.” Uiagalelei camped at Clemson last weekend.
USC 2023 QB target Dylan Lonergan of Snellville, GA was offered by Ohio State after camp workout.
USC offered 6-9 Noah Clowney of Dorman. He also holds offers from #Clemson, Georgia Tech, Xavier, Upstate, Virginia Tech, Appalachian State, Providence, Indiana and Georgia.