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A fresh look at the freshmen: Travis Etienne

The remaining 10 members of Clemson’s 2017 signing class arrived on campus June 25, joining early enrollees Hunter Johnson, Logan Rudolph, Baylon Spector and Blake Vinson.

The Clemson Insider gives a scouting report on each of the newcomers. We break down what the player does best, what he can do to earn playing time as a freshman, his future outlook and more.

Name: Travis Etienne

Position: Running Back

Height, Weight: 5’11, 210

Hometown (High School): Jennings, La. (Jennings HS)

Prospect rankings: 4-star, No. 13 position, No. 4 state, No. 114 national (ESPN); 4-star, No. 26 position, No. 16 state, NR national (Rivals); 4-star, No. 17 position, No. 2 RB in state, No. 186 national (Scout); 4-star, No. 16 position, No. 8 state, No. 243 national (247Sports)

High school stats & accolades: For his career, had 7,518 rushing yards in 42 games (179 average per game), 103 rushing touchdowns, 18 receptions for 421 yards, 22 kickoff returns for 822 yards (37 average per return) … all-state and state AAA MVP in 2015 … first-team All-USA Today Louisiana in 2015

Strengths: Etienne has the combination of size and speed that Clemson wants in its running backs. At 5-foot-11, 210 pounds, he has a frame fit for rushing between the tackles. He was clocked at a 4.43 in the 40-yard dash at The Opening last year, so he has the burst to run outside as well. He fits the bill of a power back, but offers athleticism and acceleration to boot.

What he can do to earn playing time as freshman: Etienne’s commitment late in the 2017 recruiting cycle gave the Tigers a much-needed fourth scholarship running back, and he enters Clemson capable of contributing right away from a physical standpoint. However, having played in a wing-T offense in high school, Etienne faces a learning curve with Clemson’s spread attack. How quickly he is able to pick up the inside-running game, pass-protection responsibilities and pass-catching duties during fall camp could determine how much he plays this season.

Future outlook: Etienne has drawn comparisons to former Clemson back Wayne Gallman because of his skillset, slightly upright running style and fact Gallman also played in a wing-T offense in high school. Etienne has considerable upside and the tools to eventually pose a similar threat.

 

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