If you’d rather listen to the soothing sound of Korn’s voice delivering the recruiting report, here’s your chance:
Punter Bradley Pinion (6-6 220) of Concord, NC committed Tuesday night to Clemson over North Carolina. With Clemson losing punter Dawson Zimmerman after this season, the Tigers targeted Pinion who visited the campus four times over the recruiting process. “I decided on Clemson because of the chance to come in and start right away,” Pinion said. “The atmosphere was perfect, the coaches felt perfect. It felt right in my heart. But, the biggest thing was the chance to start as a freshman.” Pinion called Dabo Swinney Tuesday night with the news. He also talked with coaches Chad Morris, Danny Pearman and Dan Brooks. Pinion averaged 38 yards per punt last season. He also plans to handle kickoff duties with the Tigers. Pinion said he will graduate early and enroll at Clemson in January. He’s the 8th commitment for Clemson’s 2012 class.
QB Chad Kelly of Buffalo was at Clemson Wednesday and worked out for Dabo Swinney, Chad Morris and company. “My day at Clemson was great,” Kelly said in a text message Wednesday evening. “I loved every minute of it.” Kelly plans to announce his college choice Thursday at 3:15 at his school. He’s had Clemson, Alabama, Florida State, Purdue, Michigan State, Syracuse and Buffalo as his final schools. He’s not publicly eliminated any of the schools. Most close observers of this situation believe he will pick Clemson. Asked for a final thought about his decision going into Thursday, Kelly replied, “You just never know.”
Dillon WR Kwinton Smith was among the prospects in attendance at USC camp on Wednesday and he picked up an offer from the Gamecocks while there. “It went real good,” Smith said. “Just being able to bond with Coach Steve Spurrier Jr. I think I did pretty good. We did drills and coach Spurrier did some one on one drills. It’s exciting to get the offer. It’s close to home and it’s a great school to attend.” Smith also has offers from Clemson, Wake Forest, NC State, Notre Dame, Auburn, East Carolina, Minnesota, Florida, Virginia Tech, LSU and Alabama. He has also been to camps or to visits at Alabama, LSU, Auburn and Georgia and is going to Florida next month. Smith said right now his favorite group is USC, Alabama, LSU, Florida and Virginia Tech with no leader. He plans to decide sometime in the middle of the season. Smith, who actually lives in Hamer, said it was pointed out to him that Steve Spurrier’s father was once a preacher at a church in Hamer.
DL Martin Aiken of Bamberg-Ehrhardt visited USC Wednesday with his mother, and his coach said the visit put the Gamecocks back up front along with Clemson. “I think it’s even, Carolina and Clemson,” Butch Crosby said. “The in-state schools are even. The visit went pretty well. He’s probably going back to USC before making his decision. There are still some things he wants to see. He saw everything but he wants to come back and see how the kids work and how he fits in. His mom really liked it because she saw all the academic people. That’s going to be the biggest thing.” Aiken was at Clemson last week and he will go to Georgia Tech Friday. He plans to announce his decision June 26th. His teammate, DL David DeLeon, has moved up his announcement to the same day. He’s favoring Miami of Ohio.
PK Will Roper (5-11 200) is transferring from Arizona State and is trying to decide between Clemson and USC. Roper, a native of Hendersonville, NC, visited Clemson in May and was at USC two weeks ago. Both schools will take him as a walk on if he gets accepted. Roper said he had one class at Arizona State which has negatively affected his transcripts, but Tuesday he got the word from Arizona State that he is eligible to transfer. As for a preference at this point, Roper said it’s Clemson. “I really liked my visit to Clemson and I’m thinking about going back for a second visit,” Roper said. “If I get in to Clemson, it’s a high probability of me going there. I’m waiting to be accepted at Clemson. I liked the Clemson coaches. They treated me like a running back, treated me really well.” But, Roper said his decision is not clear cut. “My dad favors South Carolina because he’s worried about Clemson’s staff getting fired. I’m looking for what’s going to be the best opportunity (to kick). USC may be the best opportunity for earning a scholarship. I met with Coach (John) Butler (USC special teams coach). He’s a nice guy, I liked him a lot.” Roper hopes to make a decision as soon as possible once he’s accepted by the schools. Roper attended a prep school for a year after high school and spent one season as a walk on at Arizona State. He will have to sit out this season and he will have three years of eligibility starting in 2012.
LB Darius Hall (6-0 222) of Miami received an invitation from Clemson to attend a camp and plans to do so in two weeks. “I’m really excited about it,” Hall said. “I think there is an offer waiting for me there. I am real interested in Clemson.” It will be his first trip to the Upstate. Hall will camp at Miami on Sunday and Louisville in July. His offers are from Oklahoma State, Memphis, North Carolina Central, Marshall and Cincinnati. Hall has given a soft verbal commitment to Oklahoma State.
Clemson is showing interest in 6-1 Madison Jones of Raleigh, NC. The Tigers have not yet offered. Jones has offers from Richmond, Tulsa, Drake, Marshall and Georgia Southern. Miami, Georgia Tech, Georgetown and Marquette are also showing interest.