2024 WR Kyle Vaka (6-0 175) of Alpharetta, GA appears to be a fan of 1990 baseball movies. In particular Tom Hanks films. Vaka, whose recruitment is starting to pick up steam, says his visit to the Clemson spring game was nothing short of impressive.
“There’s so much to talk about when it comes to Clemson. There’s very impressive facilities, Mr. Jeff Davis and the PAW Journey, they’ve got a two-time national championship head coach in Coach (Dabo) Swinney and their fan base is incredible,” Vaka reflected. “I’ve learned that through Twitter and everything else. And it’s in a league of its own with all those attributes. And my sister’s a student there, so I’d say we’ve started a legacy.”
Vaka got to see up close and personal how hardy the Clemson fan base can be when facing a less than ideal weather day for the “Orange and White” game.
“Yeah, that was one of the things that stood out to me right away was just the loyalty that those fans have,” Vaka said. “It was a bitter day, was cold and watching the Tiger Walk and there were still so many of their fans just there to support the team and their players and the game. It’s very impressive and it just goes to show how loyal their fan base is.”
And something as simple as standing on a collegiate sideline during pregame festivities made quite an impression on the Georgia wideout.
“It’s definitely surreal, I would say. Watching that – I’m only a sophomore, so some of those guys that I’ve been following when they were in high school and now they’re playing in college and I’m watching them warm up 10 yards away from me and it’s cool to watch,” he said. “I’m always learning. I’m always watching them and seeing what I can do that they’re doing and even in warm up. So, it was definitely a learning experience. And it was a great experience.”
Clemson wide receivers coach Tyler Grisham made sure to make the 2024 target feel welcome and it appears he did a solid job.
“I got to spend a lot of time with Coach Grisham and Coach (Kaleb) Nobles on the offensive staff,” Vaka pointed out. “Coach Nobles, he’s an offensive analyst with the quarterbacks and receivers. But I got to spend a lot of time with them. They’re super genuine. We had a great conversation, and it was a really good time. Coach Grisham, he’s a super genuine guy. It was a conversation with him and my family. And we were talking not only football, but just life, talking about his kids. And he was telling us what he did the past weekend with his family. So, from football to life, he’s just a really genuine guy. And I enjoyed our conversation.”
Vaka this spring also visited USC, Georgia Tech and Vanderbilt, and he is looking forward to a big summer as his recruitment kicks into high gear.
“This summer, I definitely plan on camping at Clemson. Vanderbilt I’ll get to, Furman and probably South Carolina,” he said. “This summer’s huge for me. And I’m definitely a grinder. I’m a student of the game and I’m someone that’s committed to constant growth. And that’s what I’ve been doing this off season is just constantly progressing and growing in my game, I’ve worked very hard, and I know that’s going to pay off in the summer and I’m going to be able to perform at a high level.”