The 2023 NFL Draft wrapped up on Saturday with rounds 4-7, and Clemson and USC contributed a total of six more players to the NFL Draft selections with three Tigers being chosen and two Gamecocks.
Clemson ended up with a total of six selections with the additions of DE KJ Henry, OL Jordan McFadden and TE Davis Allen, all taken in the fifth round. Henry was chosen by Washington at pick #137. McFadden went to the Chargers with pick #156. Allen was taken by the Rams with pick #175.
- Henry became the 75th player in Dabo Swinney’s head coaching tenure to be drafted into the NFL, including the 12th fifth-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.
- Henry became Clemson’s second all-time selection with the No. 137 overall pick, joining multi-time Pro Bowl DT Grady Jarrett, whom the Atlanta Falcons selected at that spot in 2015.
- Henry became the 14th Clemson defensive lineman to be drafted since 2015. Those 14 players include seven first-round picks and 13 Top 150 picks.
- McFadden became the 76th player in Dabo Swinney’s head coaching tenure to be drafted into the NFL, including the 13th fifth-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.
- McFadden became Clemson’s fourth offensive lineman selected in the last three NFL Drafts, joining Jackson Carman (2021), John Simpson (2020) and Tremayne Anchrum (2020).
- McFadden’s selection snapped a streak of sixth consecutive Clemson defensive players selected across the 2022-23 drafts. The six straight defensive picks came following all five of Clemson’s 2021 draft picks coming from the offensive side of the ball.
- Allen became the 77th player in Dabo Swinney’s head coaching tenure to be drafted into the NFL, including the 14th fifth-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.
- Allen became the seventh Clemson tight end drafted all-time and the third to be selected during Head Coach Dabo Swinney’s tenure. The Indianapolis Colts selected Dwayne Allen in 2012 and the New York Jets selected Jordan Leggett in 2017.
The Gamecocks finished with five draft picks with three two taken Saturday. Cornerback Darius Rush was taken by the Colts in the fifth round with pick #138, offensive guard Jovaughn Gwyn went to the Falcons in the eighth round with pick #225 and wide receiver Jalen Brooks was chosen by the Cowboys in the seventh round with pick #244.
Rush, who measured in at 6-1 7/8 and 198 pounds on the Gamecocks’ Pro Timing Day, originally came to Carolina as a wide receiver, but was converted to cornerback during his collegiate career. He played in 43 career games for the Gamecocks, including 21 starts. The Kingstree native logged three career interceptions and broke up 15 passes. He collected 78 tackles, including 38 as a senior in 2022. Rush becomes the 33rd Carolina defensive back selected all-time, with 18 taken since 2002.
Gwyn, who measured in at 6-1 3/4 and 300 pounds on the Gamecocks’ Pro Timing Day, was a four-year starter and a two-time team captain for the Gamecocks. The Charlotte, N.C. product played at the right guard position, starting in 47 games, tying for fourth on the school’s all-time list, while tying for second in school history with 47-consecutive starts. As a senior, Gwyn was named to the Coaches’ Second-Team All-SEC squad and was a fourth-team All-SEC selection by Phil Steele. He was presented with the Outstanding Student-Athlete Award, the Strength & Conditioning Award and the Most Outstanding Senior Award following the season. Gwyn was also a semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy and was a member of the 2023 NFF Hampshire honor Society.
Brooks, who measured in at 6-1 and 200 pounds on the Gamecocks’ Pro Timing Day, began his career at Division II Wingate before playing his final three seasons in Columbia. He logged 58 catches for 785 yards and a pair of touchdowns in 24 games including 22 starts with the Garnet & Black. The Harrisburg, N.C. product started all 12 regular season games in 2022, hauling in 33 passes for 504 yards, an average of 15.3-yards per catch. Following the season he was recognized with the Overcoming Adversity Award and earned the Community Service Award from the coaching staff at the Senior Banquet.
The five Gamecocks selected in the 2023 NFL Draft are the most Carolina players selected since the 2013 NFL Draft when seven players were taken.