By Hale McGranahan.
Several weeks ago, Brent Venables asked Chad Smith to do him a favor.
Smith, a four-star linebacker, was encouraged to reach out to four-star defensive tackle Christian Wilkins and began recruiting him to Clemson.
“We’ve been in touch, texting each other weekly,” Smith told TheClemsonInsider on Sunday, after he and Wilkins finished their official visits to Clemson.
“Coach Venables told me he’s a guy that needs to be here, ‘He’s your guy.’ He pretty much told me, ‘He’s your guy. You’re in charge of helping bring him, and he’s going to help you a lot, so…’
“When (Venables) said that, I’ve been talking with (Wilkins), pretty much weekly.”
Smith was one of 10 Clemson commitments in town on official visit this past weekend. Wilkins was the only non-committed official guest.
“It was fun. Hanging out with Christian, (it) definitely was a great, great time. Hanging out with him — chill, talk about a little bit of football, socialize, it was a great time,” Smith said. “I was pretty much in his hip pocket the entire time, was pretty much recruiting him, but also enjoying our time here. We definitely grew a relationship that will last for a little while.”
Clemson has a “good shot” at adding Wilkins to its 2015 class.
“He’s going to take some other officials these next coming weeks to compare and contrast,” Smith said. “So, hopefully, after he finishes taking visits, hopefully he’ll see that Clemson best fits him. But, ultimately, he’s got to choose what’s best for him.”
The Dominion High School (Sterling, Virginia) senior certainly enjoyed his weekend in Clemson.
“It was a great time, definitely a weekend to remember,” he said. “Being around all my future teammates and coaches, the school and environment down there for game day, it’s something special.”
As a senior, Smith finished with 120 tackles, 38 assists, 13 tackles for loss, four sacks, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and six blocked kicks. On offense, he had 25 catches for 250 yards with four touchdowns and 12 carries for 102 yards and two touchdowns.