Tigers at top for 4-star Florida lineman

William Barnes, one of the top offensive linemen in the 2018 class from Apopka High in Apopka, Fla., holds over a dozen offers and is hoping for one from Clemson.

The Clemson Insider caught up with the high-four star offensive tackle, who said Clemson is one of his favorite schools along with Auburn, Florida, Florida State and North Carolina.

“The school is beautiful,” Barnes said of Clemson during an interview with The Clemson Insider. “And the people are pretty great, and I just love running down the hill.”

Barnes owns offers from Alabama, Auburn, Duke, Florida, Florida State, Miami, North Carolina, N.C. State, Ohio State, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Tennessee, UCLA and USF.

If Clemson were to join the aforementioned list, it would become a major player in Barnes’ recruitment.

“It would mean a lot to me,” Barnes told TCI in June. “I’ve liked Clemson since I was a freshman, and they are definitely one of my top schools.”

Barnes said he is hearing the most from North Carolina, Auburn, Florida, Miami and Clemson right now.

After being named MVP of the 2016 Orlando Rivals Camp Series in February, the 6-foot-4, 290-pounder visited Clemson for the Dabo Swinney Camp in June.

He hopes to get back to Clemson following the conclusion of his junior season, though there is no set date of yet.

“I plan on trying to get up there during the offseason,” Barnes said, “but right now I have no official date.”

This season, Barnes has attended games at Auburn, Florida, Florida State and Miami. He plans to go to North Carolina for its contest against N.C. State this Friday and potentially the Iron Bowl at Alabama as well.

Barnes intends to commit after his senior season.

“I find the coaching staff and the people and the academics are most important to me,” Barnes said, “and of course the football.”

Barnes, who is rated by Rivals.com as the No. 12 prospect in Florida, the nation’s No. 5 offensive tackle and the nation’s No. 42 prospect overall, said his junior season went well.

“I have just a few things I need to work on as a player and a leader for my team,” Barnes said, “but other than that (it was) a great season.”

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