It seemed like a foregone conclusion that four-star safety Quindarious Monday would commit to the Tigers, and that came to fruition.
However, it was the SEC’s Auburn Tigers that Monday gave his pledge to in July — not Clemson, the school that many people, including Monday himself, thought he would commit to.
“I feel like it was the best decision for me and my family, so I just went on and made the decision,” Monday said of his Auburn commitment in an interview with The Clemson Insider. “I know it was going to be stressful during the season because I know I have a lot of coaches calling my phone, texting my phone. I just wanted to get it out of the way so I could have a stress-free senior year.”
Even Clemson’s coaching staff was caught by surprise when Monday committed to Auburn during a visit to the school on July 11.
After receiving a coveted offer from Clemson during the Dabo Swinney Camp in June, Monday scheduled another visit to Clemson for the All In Cookout on July 21, and he had the intention of committing to Clemson while on campus.
Monday ultimately didn’t make the visit after committing to Auburn, but the Atlanta (Ga.) Carver product admits he was really close to pulling the trigger on a Clemson commitment.
“Clemson has always been one of my dream schools,” Monday said. “When I went down for the camp the week before that, they said they really loved how I played. They really didn’t know I can cover that good, so when I talked to the coaches, they were like I’d be a great fit, I’d come in and have a chance to fight for a starting position.
“So, I had to think about that.”
So, why did Monday have a change of heart while on Auburn’s campus?
Ironically, it was a conversation Monday had with Auburn defensive coordinator Kevin Steele — who of course served as Clemson’s defensive coordinator from 2009-11 — that changed his mind.
“Coach Steele has always been 100 with me,” Monday said. “He didn’t tell me what I wanted to hear, he told me what I needed to hear. He was like this recruiting game is like Disney World, and it’s true because you go to a school and they’re going to show you all the good things to get you to come down there, but they’re not going to really show you the things that you’re going to be getting yourself into.”
It appears that Steele and Auburn still have work to do, though, before they can make things official with Monday when signing day rolls around.
Monday continues to hear from two schools on a regular basis, one of which is Clemson.
“I hear from Clemson and Georgia a lot,” Monday said. “They’re still on me hard.”
Clemson’s message to Monday has been consistent, and he is still giving Clemson a strong look.
Monday said he plans to take an official visit to Clemson during the season.
“I’m hearing from coach (Mike) Reed and coach Mickey Conn and coach (Brent) Venables,” Monday said. “They’re basically just saying to still think about it, still take a visit, so I’m going to take one of my official visits to Clemson to see everything.
“I’ve been down there once, but I really didn’t get to see everything, so I just want to experience that and see how it is.”
As it stands now, Monday also intends to make official visits to Auburn and Georgia.
Asked to describe his current commitment status, Monday said he remains solid on his pledge to Auburn right now.
“I’m solid on Auburn right now because they’re showing me everything that I really need to see,” he said.
At the end of the day, when Monday signs on the dotted line with the school of his choice, that school will have met the criteria for his decision.
“First I want to come in and have a chance to fight for a starting position,” Monday said. “I want the school to have my major, and I want it to be close to my parents so it won’t be that far for my parents to get to me.”
Monday (6-3, 175) is ranked by ESPN as the No. 8 safety and No. 107 overall prospect in the class of 2018.
Have you ordered the 2017 Clemson season preview ‘Best is the Standard’ from the staff that covers Clemson football 365 days a year? Order yours today to make sure you get a copy!