Linebacker Mike Jones and defensive end Xavier Thomas — two of the country’s top prospects and headlining members of Clemson’s 2018 class who play together at IMG Academy — are contributing a diary to The Clemson Insider.
In the latest installment, the Clemson commits talk about the Tigers’ huge official visit weekend, where Clemson stands with some of the uncommitted official visitors, how excited they are to sign with the Tigers in less than a month and more:
On who came with them on their official visits
Mike: It was me, my mom, my dad, my grandpa and my cousin. My grandpa has actually been a lifelong Gamecocks fan because his son played safety there. And now I came to the house today and he had on a Clemson hat. He’s definitely had a huge change of heart, so he’s loving it. My dad has been there a lot of times and has a lot of great relationships. He loved it, and the whole family just can’t wait for me to get there.
Xavier: My little sister, my bigger sister, my aunt and my mom came up this time. My aunt and my bigger sister had already been there, but my mom was just getting a better feel of what Clemson is about and academic wise which was one of her main questions. She’s really liking it.
On the highlights of their visits
Mike: I had a great time. My family also had a great time. All the coaches were their regular selves, just being great guys. The highlight probably for me is it was my mom’s first time to come up, so just seeing her happy and just knowing that she’s trusting the people who are going to be taking care of her son. That was probably my highlight. She had a great time.
Xavier: My mom hasn’t been to Clemson since my freshman year, so a lot has changed since then, some of the coaches and facilities. I just wanted her to get a home feel of why I chose Clemson and why I wanted to go there. So it was a great experience for her.
On bonding with the 2018 recruiting class during the official visit weekend
Mike: I got to know who I’m going to be really cool with whenever I get in there and know what to expect from guys, just how they are. It was a great time.
Xavier: I feel like this visit really did help us bond because a lot of guys I really wasn’t that close with. This visit really allowed me to get to know a lot of guys that are committed.
On the uncommitted official visitors
Mike: From what I’ve been told, everybody had a really great time. I still think we have a really good chance with my boy Cade Mays. Personally I feel like I’ll get him because I’m the best recruiter in college football. I feel like we hit it off with Bookie (Brendan Radley-Hiles) and Tyreke Johnson too. I talked them and they really enjoyed it.
Xavier: I talked to Bookie and Tyreke. They really hit home with them with the official visit, and they know the DB situation with Clemson so they see the opportunity of what they can do if they come to Clemson. Another I really want to see come to Clemson even though he wasn’t on the visit is K.J. (Henry). I think we’ll get him.
Prediction for the Clemson-Carolina game
Mike: Domination, 100 percent. I can’t even think of a score right now. I don’t see them scoring two touchdowns personally.
Xavier: I really hope that we do dominate them. I think we should. If we don’t I’m going to catch a lot of heat, so I really hope we dominate them.
On the early signing period being less than a month away
Mike: When I was on my visit, it really kind of hit me like man, once I start back to school again I have three more weeks of high school and then a few weeks of break and I’m on campus in early January. It’s crazy to think that it’s really almost here.
Xavier: I’m very excited. I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time now, to be able to sign and head off to college. It’s a great opportunity to be able to go to college for free and I’m just blessed for it.
In case you missed it, here are the previous installments of TCI’s diary with Mike and Xavier: