Fresh off winning a third straight conference championship and clinching a third consecutive berth in the College Football Playoff, Clemson coaches will start hitting the road this week to visit priority prospects.
The NCAA contact period began last Sunday and runs through Dec. 16, meaning college coaches can have face-to-face meetings with a recruit and his family away from the college’s campus.
Most schools were able to start hitting the recruiting trail last week, but Clemson stayed put as preparations for the ACC Championship Game against Miami on Saturday took precedence. However, the Tigers’ late start is certainly not a bad thing — but beneficial.
Clemson’s beatdown of the Hurricanes on a national stage provided the Tigers with plenty of quality exposure from a recruiting standpoint and credibility that heavily outweighs the value of visiting prospects just one week earlier.
Now, with another championship in tow — not to mention a No. 1 national ranking — the Tigers have plenty of ammo as they begin recruiting travels this week.
Not only were eyes on Clemson on Saturday night, but the Tigers took the spotlight again Sunday when the College Football Playoff rankings were released. Clemson was among the programs featured on ESPN’s live telecast of the rankings unveil, and the national audience was able to get a glimpse of the team watch party that the Tigers held in the football ops facility for the rankings show. Recruits tuned in could see Clemson players gathered together enjoying the fruits of their labor, and that publicity was invaluable, especially considering Clemson was the only team that had a celebration for the event.
The good, brand-building pub is just beginning, though. There will be much more for Clemson over the next month as the College Football Playoff is at the front and center of the national discussion. Talk surrounding the Tigers and other playoff teams will far exceed that of other bowl games.
The Tigers are in an excellent spot as they hit the road hard this week to recruit. While Clemson got a late start, it is not truly behind — other teams are chasing the Tigers with all they have to sell on the recruiting trail.
Clemson began recruiting travels a week later than most teams each of the past two years, as well, due to prep for ACC title games. It worked out just fine for Clemson, which brought in signing classes that were among the nation’s best.
The Tigers are in the process of putting together a historic 2018 class, and they are in an enviable position as they head out on the road this week to recruit as the nation’s No. 1 team, defending national champions and 2017 ACC champs.