Shyheim Battle, a class of 2019 prospect, made his second visit to Clemson in as many months for the spring game last Saturday.
The Rocky Mount (N.C.) cornerback then competed at the Elite 11 Regional camp in Charlotte last Sunday on his way home, and The Clemson Insider caught up with him there.
“I loved the atmosphere,” Battle said of the Tigers’ spring game. “The crowd was wild. Everybody loved the game. The crowd was into the game.”
Battle (6-2, 170) got a good look at Clemson cornerback Trayvon Mullen, whom he has been building a relationship with.
“I kept an eye on Trayvon Mullen,” Battle said. “That’s their number one corner. That’s they’re go-to guy. I keep an eye on him, have a good relationship with him.”
“He tells me how it is up there,” Battle added of Mullen. “It’s a business program, but the coaches, they’re down to earth. It’s like family up there still.”
Battle also has continued to strengthen his relationship with defensive coordinator Brent Venables and cornerbacks coach Mike Reed.
“Me and coach Reed, we get on the phone about once a week,” Battle said. “So, we’re pretty close… Coach Venables, we talk on Twitter every day.
“Coach Venables is real cool. I know he’s loud. He’s going to get his word across. He knows his players, he keeps up with them. And Coach Reed is a serious guy too, but he’s going to keep it real. He doesn’t sugarcoat anything. I know he’s a real good coach too.”
Prior to the spring game, Battle visited Clemson to watch a spring practice on March 9 and liked what he saw.
“It was cool,” he said. “They have a real intense practice, but they keep it competitive. They have this drill called the W drill, and you’re going to get sewn up if you don’t do your job. And the DBs, they lined up against receivers and had to wear boxing gloves. I feel like that was a little different.”
Battle said he plans to return to Clemson this summer for Dabo Swinney’s annual All In Cookout gathering.
Clemson extended a scholarship offer to Battle in February.
“It meant a lot to me because I went to camp up there going into my sophomore year, because I was just becoming a corner,” he said. “So I went up there, learned a little bit, and I just loved everything they had going on. Ever since then, I’ve been keeping up with them.”
In addition to Clemson, Battle owns offers from schools such as NC State, Ohio State, Tennessee, LSU, Duke, North Carolina, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, Virginia, Virginia Tech and West Virginia.
He has already begun the process of cutting down his recruitment.
“I’m kind of narrowing it down now,” he said. “I’m starting to cut off schools that I’m not really interested in.”
Battle cited Clemson, NC State, Ohio State, Tennessee and Virginia as the schools recruiting him the hardest, in no specific order.
He has a timeframe in mind for when he intends to commit and says he’ll be looking closely at a few factors in particular.
“I want to take official visits before I make a final decision,” he said. “So, it’s probably going to be during the season or after the season.
“I’m looking at playing time, connection with the coaches, see how they do things. I want a great atmosphere, too. I don’t want empty stands. I want to be somewhere where it’s big.”
Clemson remains in strong shape for the Tar Heel State standout, sharing the status as co-leader with one of the in-state schools.
“Right now, they’re in a two-way tie with NC State,” Battle said of the Tigers. “So, they’re right there.”
In 11 games as a junior last season, Battle logged 31 tackles and three pass deflections on defense. Offensively, he recorded 17 receptions for 361 yards and four touchdowns.