The Clemson Insider staff members Robert MacRae, Gavin Oliver, Kaila Burns-Heffner, Will Vandervort, Gabby Bates, Alex Turri and Kevin Shroat go Around the Horn to answer some of the questions surrounding Clemson athletics and college football.
Which freshman will be the talk of Clemson fans after Troy?
Robert MacRae – I’ll go with Tavien Feaster. If Feaster gets enough touches he should have some plays that make the fans start a buzz in Death Valley. The wow play could come on a kickoff return, but hopefully the Tigers won’t have many kickoff returns. I’ll go as far as to predict Feaster will get his first touchdown for the Tigers this weekend.
Will Vandervort: That’s a hard question to answer. I don’t know if any of the offensive players know enough of the offense to make a big impact. If there is one, I could see it being Tavien Feaster. Maybe, Cornell Powell takes a kickoff back for a touchdown and that would definitely get the fans excited. If I have to pick one, I will go over to the defense where I feel like, because of what we heard from practice, Trayvon Mullen could be the freshman that stands out this week. Maybe he grabs an interception or two or breaks up a couple of passes. I could see K’Von Wallace and Tanner Muse, maybe, also making some noise.
William Qualkinbush – Based on the likelihood that we may see him in certain situations of interest, Cornell Powell will be the player people will be raving about for the next week. Special teams is always a hot topic, and his playmaking ability should make him a candidate to break a big return or two late in the game. If that happens, pressure will mount to put him out on the field against stiffer competition as a returner to try to shake loose the chains that have seemingly held Clemson’s return game back for the past several seasons. He has enough talent as a receiver to open some eyes in that role, as well.
Gavin Oliver – Tavien Feaster will likely be the talk of Clemson fans after the game against Troy. I think we’ll see his dynamic playmaking abilities on display. But since he has already been heavily discussed among Clemson fans since fall practice began, I’ll go with a different answer here — I believe there will be buzz around Trayvon Mullen after this Saturday. Dabo said Marcus Edmond will probably start the game at cornerback opposite Cordrea Tankersley, and Ryan Carter and Mark Fields will also play. But in a game that isn’t going to be close, Mullen should see plenty of snaps and get an extended look from the coaching staff. Troy likes to throw the ball and has a couple of quarterbacks who can do it, so Mullen should have an opportunity to make some plays. Like so many of the other freshmen, this game will be big for the development of Mullen, who can make a case for a more prominent role on the defense moving forward with a good showing Saturday.
Kevin Shroat – Clemson fans will finally get to see what Tavien Feaster can do on Saturday. Dabo won’t need Gallman’s services in the second half and Feaster will run wild on the already tired Troy defense. While Adam Choice is obviously the second option on the depth chart, Feaster’s athletic ability will be utilized and he could see some time at wide receiver. It wouldn’t surprise me if he punches in a touchdown against Troy, leaving Clemson fans happy knowing that the run game will be strong after Gallman leaves.
Alex Turri – The only clear choice is Dexter Lawrence. With his body type, to go along with his athleticism. Lawrence is a complete force. Not only is he a force, he has the potential to become greater than just that. I believe playing at home in front of the Clemson crowd for his first home game, will spark something in him leading to a memorable performance.