Clemson commitment Derion Kendrick doesn’t do a whole lot of talking.
“Most of my life I’ve just been quiet,” Kendrick told The Clemson Insider at The Opening Regional in Charlotte on Sunday.
On the field, though, the four-star wide receiver from Rock Hill (S.C.) South Pointe has a loud game. Sure, he likes to chirp a little bit and sometimes let his opponents hear it when he beats them. But more than anything, his talent and ability as a player speak on their own.
He’s a silent but lethal weapon, and his skills were on full display as he was consistently one of the best athletes in competition at The Opening Charlotte.
“On the field, I talk every once in a while,” Kendrick said. “But I’m very physical, play fast and then I come at you very silently. So, you just have to be watching out.”
Kendrick, the consensus No. 1 prospect in South Carolina, is expected to be a receiver for the Tigers. However, he led South Pointe to its third straight 4A state title as the team’s starting quarterback last season, throwing for 3,348 yards and 37 touchdowns while rushing for 630 yards and eight scores.
Kendrick became the fourth member of Clemson’s 2018 recruiting class in January when he chose the Tigers over offers from Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia Tech among others.
He said he has been even more motivated since announcing his commitment.
“It’s a chip on my shoulder to make me work harder and do what I’m supposed to do to help me and my team win,” Kendrick said. “So, I just have to help my coach out by being a leader of the team and carrying my team to a championship.”
“I know I have to stay focused in school and also outside of school, stay on track to make it where I want to go,” he added.
Kendrick picked Clemson because of the homely atmosphere and style of its offense that should make his transition to the next level easier.
“I feel like I’m at home when I go,” he said. “Everybody’s so into greeting you and stuff like that, and also the atmosphere. I like the fact it’s a space offense, and that’s what I’ve been running most of my life. So, I’ll get used to it quick.”
Behind Cartersville (Ga.) five-star quarterback Trevor Lawrence and Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy five-star defensive end Xavier Thomas, Kendrick is the highest-ranked prospect in the Tigers’ class.
The consensus top-150 overall player is glad to be a part of the potentially historic class Clemson is working to build.
“It’s truly a blessing,” Kendrick said. “I just have to stay on the right track and keep it going so I can play with them and also have a great time.”