Clemson 'the place for' Mellusi since he first stepped on campus

Clemson 'the place for' Mellusi since he first stepped on campus

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Clemson 'the place for' Mellusi since he first stepped on campus

Exactly one week after visiting Clemson for the first time, Naples (Fla.) four-star running back Chez Mellusi committed to the Tigers on Monday evening.

Mellusi, who is ranked as high as the No. 15 running back in the 2019 class, spoke with The Clemson Insider shortly after making his decision public.

“I had a lot of thinking to do on the drive back up. I knew it was the place for me since I stepped on campus,” Mellusi said. “It was just a matter of me talking to my family and stuff.

“I was just in shock when I got on the campus and (saw) the coaches and how fired up they are just to even be there. I knew it was the right decision as soon as I was there.”

Mellusi (6-1, 175) was in Dabo Swinney’s office during his visit last Monday when Clemson’s head coach extended a scholarship offer.

“When he told me, I just had a big smile on my face,” Mellusi said. “And he was fired up.”

Added Mellusi: “Coach Swinney’s amazing. He’s awesome. Everything about him… When something’s really important or something’s really urgent, he takes care of business.”

Mellusi had been communicating with Clemson for a while leading up to Monday’s commitment.

“It was just a matter of me getting up there and visiting and getting an offer,” he said. “I’ve been talking to coach (Tony) Elliott for months now.”

Elliott has built a good bond with Mellusi.

“We talk about almost everything, from what type of music we listen to, to what we’re even doing at the very moment,” Mellusi said. “He’s a great guy, and I respect him a lot because he’s not one of those coaches that just throws out offers and this and that. He’s really straightforward.”

Mellusi held over 20 offers, including ones from Miami, Notre Dame, South Carolina, Auburn, LSU, Michigan, Texas A&M and Southern Cal.

What put Clemson on top for the talented rusher?

“The running back position is a big need in my class,” he said. “I just felt like that was a good fit for me, and I think I can bring everything to the table and be a big part of Clemson.”

As a junior in 2017, Mellusi rushed for 1,505 yards and 19 touchdowns while averaging 8.9 yards per carry.

He describes himself as an all-around playmaker who will bring a lot to the table for the Tigers in the future.

“I’m going to do it all,” he said. “All three downs, short yardage, passing out of the backfield, bursting an 80-yard run… Everything.”

Mellusi is ranked by 247Sports as the No. 260 overall prospect in the country.

He becomes Clemson’s fifth commitment in four days. Baton Rouge (La.) University Lab linebacker Bryton Constantin committed on Friday before Miami (Fla.) South Dade wide receiver Frank Ladson, Avon (Conn.) Old Farms quarterback Taisun Phommachanh and Shelby (N.C.) Crest safety Lannden Zanders committed on Saturday.

The group joins Alpharetta (Ga.) Milton safety Joseph Charleston, Calhoun (Ga.) wide receiver Brannon Spector, Riverdale (Ga.) tight end Jaelyn Lay and Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy punter Aidan Swanson in Clemson’s 2019 class.

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