COLUMBIA, S.C. — Five-star defensive end Jordan Burch is ranked as the top prospect in the Palmetto State for the class of 2020. The 6-foot-6, 255-pound sophomore from Columbia (S.C.) Hammond School already boasts double-digit major scholarship offers.
Clemson jumped on the in-state talent early, offering Burch when he was a freshman, and he is high on the Tigers early in his recruiting process.
The Clemson Insider spoke with Burch at Hammond School on Tuesday as part of our Blue Chip Road Trip series.
“I just know that they’re close, so that’s better for me,” Burch said of Clemson. “It’s one of my options, it’s like at the top. I just like Clemson.”
Burch made an unofficial visit to Clemson for the win over Auburn last fall and returned to campus in February.
“It’s a nice place,” he said. “I like the environment. I like the coaches and how they take school seriously and get you set up for the future basically.”
Clemson’s football operations facility hasn’t failed to impress Burch, either.
“It’s nice,” he said. “I walked around with my mom and my parents, and I was amazed by how big the workout room and stuff is.”
Both Burch and his mother have gotten to know Todd Bates and are fond of the Tigers defensive line coach.
“I like coach Bates because he breaks (things) down, like what they do in the workout room, what they do on the field at my position, different things they all do,” Burch said. “He’s a hands-on type of coach, and I like that from him.”
“She likes him,” Burch added of his mom. “She talks about him sometimes, like how he’s engaged in football and how he’ll better me at the sport and as a man.”
Burch also has a relationship with Clemson defensive end Xavier Thomas. Like Thomas, Burch is from Florence, S.C.
“I played football with him when I was in fourth grade, and then ninth grade when I went to Wilson (High School), we played together,” Burch said. “I just learned a lot from his play style and how he never took plays off.”
Burch said he does not have any visits planned as of now. He cited South Carolina, Florida and Tennessee as a few other schools standing out to him early on.
As a freshman at Wilson, Burch recorded 50 tackles and was named to the MaxPreps Freshman All-American team. Last season, he totaled 56 tackles, eight sacks and 16 quarterback pressures at Hammond. He also played some on offense, rushing for 16 scores and catching three passes for touchdowns.
“As a player, I try not to take plays off, and I use my technique and what coaches teach me,” Burch said. “So what I learn, I use that on the field.”
In addition to Clemson, Burch carries offers from South Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, Virginia Tech, North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest and Oregon, among others.
He is rated as a five-star by the 247Sports Composite and ranked by 247Sports as the No. 1 prospect in South Carolina, No. 4 weak-side defensive end and No. 27 overall prospect for the 2020 class.