Seneca (S.C.) tight end Braden Galloway has visited Clemson as a recruit on several occasions, including twice in April when he received an offer from Clemson and then committed to the Tigers after the Orange & White spring game.
On Friday evening, Galloway visited again and had his best experience yet. He joined most of his fellow commits in the class of 2018 and a couple of uncommitted prospects at Clemson’s signature summer recruiting event, the All In Cookout.
“It was very fun. It was my best visit I’ve had up there since they started recruiting me and since I committed,” Galloway told The Clemson Insider. “It was real cool. We had a watermelon-eating contest, a wiffle ball home run derby, a photo shoot. They had all kinds of food out there. It was real hot, but it was very fun.”
What was on the menu at Clemson’s sixth-annual cookout?
“They had cheeseburger sliders, hamburger sliders, barbeque, nachos, corndogs,” Galloway said.
Clemson defensive tackle commit Darnell Jefferies won the watermelon-eating contest, and defensive backs coach Mike Reed captured the wiffle ball derby title.
The evening was full of fun, but Reed’s antics made for one of the especially memorable moments.
“We were doing the photo shoot and coach Reed walked in, and he had some helmet on,” Galloway said. “I don’t know if it was an old-school football helmet or if it was like a biker helmet or something. He walked in, and it was a real big helmet, and he was nodding his head to the music and he started dancing. That was real fun.”
Clemson got a pair of talented targets on campus for the event — Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) American Heritage four-star cornerback Tyson Campbell and Butler (Ga.) Taylor County four-star running back Lyn-J Dixon, a Tennessee commitment — and both enjoyed themselves according to Galloway.
Galloway spoke mostly with Dixon, and said he didn’t realize until afterward that Dixon is a Tennessee pledge.
“I didn’t know he was committed to Tennessee until after I left and had already talked to him,” Galloway said. “But we were Snapchatting, and I was telling him you need to come on and just come to Clemson, and he was like he was still thinking about things or whatever.
“But I think he loves it up there. I don’t see how anybody wouldn’t have had fun when they were up there. Everybody shows love, and all the players, we were having fun together and we were all laughing together. We got to take pictures with him and things like that, so I think he liked it.”
A few other Clemson priority targets were expected at the cookout, but Houston (Texas) Lamar five-star cornerback Anthony Cook, Atlanta (Ga.) Pace Academy five-star offensive guard Jamaree Salyer and Warner Robins (Ga.) Houston County four-star offensive guard Trey Hill didn’t make it in.
“All their reasons were valid reasons why they couldn’t make the trip,” Galloway said. “It wasn’t like they just didn’t come not to come.”
For those that were present, Galloway believes the time they spent together was quality.
“I think it was important that everybody that could make it made it because we all got to get to know each other better,” he said.
Just a few months ago, Galloway was without a football scholarship offer. Now, he is committed to the defending national champions.
It all happened fast for Galloway, who still has to pinch himself at times like last night.
“It’s still surreal,” he said. “After being there, I couldn’t see myself being anywhere else. It was real fun, and I can’t wait to be there officially with all the other guys that will be there because we’re forming the chemistry and we’re bonding together. We were all laughing together and having a blast. I couldn’t see myself going anywhere else.”
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