Clemson’s veteran corner trying to get himself and younger corners ready
It was just two years ago when Trayvon Mullen was the new guy coming in and he was looking up to veterans like Cordrea Tankersley, Ryan Carter, Marcus Edmond and Mark Fields. At the time, Mullen’s job was to just learn as much as he could and try to get better so he could possibly help Clemson with depth.
Flash forward two years later, and Mullen is the savvy veteran that the younger players like A.J. Terrell, Brian Dawkins, Jr., LeAnthony Williams and freshmen Mario Goodrich and Kyler McMichael are looking up to for guidance and leadership.
“It is interesting,” Mullen said. “I was thinking back to when I was in their shoes and I was looking up to a lot of the older guys. I just used to watch them compete and go hard in the meetings and in the field. I saw how it helped them get better.
“It has helped my role even more. It has helped me, by helping them, compete at even a higher level as well. I know what to do and I can help them get better.”
It has also helped Mullen get better. The junior said he is more focused on his craft and how to do it.
A preseason All-ACC cornerback in some eyes, Mullen has played in 26 games in his first two seasons at Clemson, including 12 games last year as a starter. He has totaled 57 tackles, broke up eight passes and has three interceptions.
“I have worked on just knowing what to do, how to do it and when to do it,” the Fort Lauderdale, Fla., native said. “I worked a lot technique wise, zone coverage and just having a mindset that I am going to win every play and just out compete everybody.”
If Mullen is able to accomplish all of his goals and he proves he is an All-ACC caliber corner, then the future looks bright. Many feel a great season by the cornerback might mean it could be his last at Clemson since he will be eligible for the NFL Draft come this January.
“Right now that is not really my focus,” he said. “I’m just trying to get better right now. That is where I am at. I just want to help the younger guys compete each week and try to do my best. If that happens, then it will happen.”