Archer High School (Lawrenceville, Ga.) head coach Andy Dyer couldn’t have been happier on Monday when he saw one of his star players, four-star safety Jalyn Phillips, commit to his dream school, Clemson, on his 18th birthday.
The Clemson Insider was on hand for Phillips’ announcement ceremony at Archer High and caught up with Dyer afterward.
“Just a great day for him and his family,” Dyer said of Phillips. “He’s done everything right since he walked on our campus in terms of all the things that football players do and all the things that they’re required and obligated to do. And he’s done right by his teammates. He’s always done right by his school, his classmates, and just got a great personality. He’s got a great way about him, so super excited for him.
“As he goes through his senior year, he has a lot of that pressure off of him, and he can just focus on doing what he loves to do — and that’s playing football and being around his teammates.”
Dyer was not surprised to see Phillips choose the Tigers over his other two finalists, Oklahoma and Alabama.
“I talk to my players,” said Dyer, who is in his ninth season as Archer’s head coach. “We communicate, and I communicate with their parents. So, I sort of felt like that’s what the final decision was going to be.”
Phillips posted 58 tackles and an interception as a junior last season. He is rated as a four-star prospect by ESPN, which ranks him as the No. 24 safety in the country for the class of 2019.
Dyer believes Clemson is getting a guy who has what it takes to play big-time college football.
“They’re getting a real physical player, a smart player,” Dyer said. “He’s got a lot of the intangibles that he’s going to need to be able to compete at that level.”
Dyer knows that once Phillips graduates from Archer, he will be in good hands with Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney and his staff.
“They’ve got a great place,” he said. “Coach Swinney does a great job. He’s got great assistants under him who are not just great coaches but they’re great men. So, it’s a great positive environment for any athlete who gets the opportunity to go there.”
Phillips’ commitment came less than one month after one of his teammates at Archer, five-star cornerback Andrew Booth, pledged to Clemson on July 30.
“I think it’s great,” Dyer said of the duo. “They’re both really good buddies, and to have a compadre with you is a big deal. You hope that the game of football creates lifelong friendships for a lot of these kids and gives them that crutch and that guy to support them through the rest of their life — when they get married, when they have kids and all the things that come with living a busy life.
“So, I’m just super proud for those guys, and they’re going to do a great job.”