By Ashley Denny.
CLEMSON, SC- Shortly after committing publically to the Clemson Tigers, TCI had a chance to speak with Buffalo dual threat Chad Kelly about his commitment and what he sees for the future of the Clemson Tigers.
Kelly, who was undoubtedly Offensive Coordinator Chad Morris’s #1 choice for Clemson’s open quarterback slot for the 2012 recruiting class, was on hand for Clemson’s second session of Dabo Swinney Football camp this week, an event that Kelly believes sealed the deal for Clemson. Here’s what he had to say about his decision, his feelings about Clemson and the community there, and why he believes that the Clemson Tigers will win a national championship within the next three years.
First of all Chad, how does it feel to be done with the process?
It feels awesome; I know that I’m in great hands and that the Clemson community is 100% behind me and it feels great knowing that. I wish I were back in Clemson right now.
What was it about Clemson that made it seem like a great fit for you?
Everything about it really. I love the atmosphere there, the coaches and players. I fell in love with Clemson the first time I visited. It was the best visit I’d been on and that feeling kind of stuck with me. It just seemed like that was where God wanted me to be.
How close were you to going somewhere else? Or was Clemson always one step ahead of the other schools recruiting you?
I knew that I loved Clemson from the beginning, but I had a lot of great visits to other schools. I’ll say that it was close but I knew all along that it would end up being Clemson. I committed on Tuesday as soon as I arrived for camp to Coach Swinney and Coach Morris but waited until today to go public.
How did you break the news to Coach Swinney and Coach Morris?
Well my uncles and I sat them down and my uncle told them that I had something I needed to tell them. I said, “Coach I just want you to know that I want to be a Clemson Tiger.” And I really wish we videotaped their reaction because Coach Swinney started jumping up and down and hollering. I was very happy that it worked out the way it did and that I was able to commit to the coaches in person and with my uncles.
How did your family take the news?
Well my uncles both loved Clemson; it was their number one choice for me. One of my uncles knew just by talking to Coach Morris that Clemson was where I needed to be. It was the number one choice of everyone in my family that had visited, so that made the decision a lot easier for me.
What was it like being able to work out with Germone Hopper and other 2012 commitments this week?
It was great! Being able to work with Germone was awesome; he really makes my job as a quarterback really easy. I’ve received so many facebook messages from current players, guys coming to Clemson this year and guys from my recruiting class which just shows me how special the people are that I will be working with.
I can’t wait to get to Clemson and workout with all of the talented guys that Clemson picked up in their 2011 recruiting class. I just think everyone that Clemson picked up in 2011 is amazing, and our recruiting class is shaping up to be just as great this year.
How did today’s press conference go? How did your classmates react to the news?
It went great. I went up there and first thanked my family for sacrificing so much for me to have the opportunity to do what I love, I cried a little bit because they really have been amazing during this whole process. My teammates were so happy for me, all along they’ve told me that the decision was mine to make and that they’d be happy for me wherever I ended up.
Did you tell any of your teammates that you had committed to Clemson already before making your decision public?
No I didn’t tell anyone because I wanted to make sure that it was the right decision for me.
What do you think about the future of Clemson football?
I think the future of Clemson football is going to be bright, with the amazing 2011 class coming in and then my class right behind it I think we’re going to have some great years ahead. I think that we’re going to bring another National Championship home to Clemson within the next three years and I’m so happy that I can be a part of that.