When talking about Clemson’s defense, all anyone wants to talk about is the Tigers’ front four.
It is understandable as to why. They do return three All-Americans in Christian Wilkins, Clelin Ferrell and Austin Bryant, as well as All-ACC defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence. However, the defensive line is not the only place where Clemson has All-American caliber players.
In the secondary, Trayvon Mullen emerged last year as one of the ACC’s best cornerbacks. The rising junior tied for the team lead last year with three interceptions, while also breaking up seven more passes, which ranked second on the team.
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound cornerback earned honorable mention All-ACC accolades in 2017. He had 42 tackles to go with his three interceptions. His best game came against NC State when he totaled nine tackles while breaking up one pass in the Tigers’ 38-31 victory.
The junior also has seven tackles and an interception in Clemson’s win over Boston College.
Mullen is now considered a breakout star to watch on the Clemson roster, especially after he had two interceptions in the spring game and returned one 84 yards for a touchdown.
“I have gotten a lot better,” he said. “I have helped a lot of the young guys out. Helping them out has kind of helped me out as well. It has helped me play better and faster.”
Mullen does not try and read too much into all the hype he is getting or will get in the months to come because he understands what’s really important. He understands he has to continue to work if he wants to achieve the goals he has set out for himself.
“It does not matter to me because at the end of the day I know what I can do regardless. That is not a big deal for me,” he said.
The junior said he just wants to get better, and in the process help the younger players in the secondary like LeAnthony Williams, A.J. Terrell and Brian Dawkins, Jr. get better.
“Helping the young guys out a lot more and getting them better is important to me,” Mullen said. “Getting those guys up to par will help us, and by doing that it will be good for me too.”
Mullen will head into fall camp as the boundary-side cornerback. He will be backed up by Williams and Dawkins. Camp begins Aug. 2.
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