The post Jordan Leggett area has arrived at Clemson, and with it comes the battle for the starting tight end spot. While this could largely turn into a committee, especially with each player having complementary strengths and weaknesses, there will have to be one that stands out to help spark the offense in the way Leggett did.
That is where Milan Richard comes into play. While Garrett Williams and Cannon Smith are better blockers, Richard has the hands and speed to make big plays and contribute in the receiving game.
Richard said the tight end unit has big shoes to fill, but thinks all of their preparation will have them ready when the season rolls around.
“It’s exciting, but we knew this time was coming,” he said. “We tried to prepare for it and now it’s here so now we have to take it and run with it. We miss Jordan, he’s a great guy and we miss him in our room.”
Going into spring camp, Richard said he didn’t really pinpoint any specific area of his game to improve in as he is trying to excel as an all-around player.
“I’ve been working on all assets of my game,” said Richard. “I don’t think you can say one part of my game is good enough to stop working on…so really just all of it to become a complete player.”
However, there is one area Richard believes he has grown in over spring practice.
“I think my maturity. Being able to understand what we got going on and what the coaches want from us,” he said. “I think some of us have been able to relate that to the rest of the offense. So I think sometimes it’s just a mature area, being able to look at the game kind of from a coaches’ perspective is something that I think I’ve worked on a little bit.”
With the Spring Game approaching this coming Saturday, Richard said his main goal is to show he can be consistent on the field.
“Just consistency,” he said. “Just being able to show that I can perform when the lights are on, if you will. It’s different from the practice field and performing per say, so just doing it in a game full time.”
While he feels like he has improved over spring practice, Richard said he still has a ways to go before he is fully satisfied.
“No, you’re never going to accomplish everything, you’re always improving,” he said. “Of course you have goals set and things you wanna accomplish but no, nowhere near accomplished everything that we need to accomplish.”
Much like the quarterback battle going on in practice, the starting tight end job will most likely be an ongoing process until the beginning of the season.
“I don’t know; you’ll have to ask the coaches,” said Richard. “I can tell you it’s a great competition. I’m pretty sure that’ll be a conversation all the way through camp.”
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