Clemson has had plenty of success recruiting quarterbacks in recent years, and it got another great one in April when four-star quarterback Taisun Phommachanh committed to the Tigers.
The Clemson Insider made a Tour of Champions stop at Avon Old Farms School in Avon, Conn., last week to see Phommachanh and spoke with his head coach, Pierce Brennan, while there.
As a junior last season, Phommachanh (6-3, 195) led Avon Old Farms to the New England Class A title game, throwing for 2,402 yards and 26 touchdowns against just one interception while rushing for 469 yards and 13 more scores.
In his first three high school seasons heading into his senior year this year, Phommachanh passed for 7,257 yards and 76 touchdowns.
“He’s a big, rangy athlete,” Brennan said of Phommachanh. “He can extend plays really well. He’s an added blocker in pass protection. So, if things break down, he can keep his eyes downfield and he feels the pocket well and he extends plays. He can make the throws.
“He’s special, man. He’s a really special kid.”
Phommachanh played at Harding High School in Bridgeport, Conn., before transferring to Avon Old Farms.
What makes him even more special, according to Brennan, is the character he possesses off the field to complement his abilities on it.
“He’s a great kid,” Brennan said. “I think at a place like Avon Old Farms, we hang our hat on recruiting better men as good as we do football players. He’s a kid that was dropped into an environment that is different than what he’s used to. He went to an intercity school down in Bridgeport, Conn. As a sophomore he came up here to repeat his sophomore year. He was thrown into a school that requires a coat and tie and jacket every single day, and a full set of classes and morning meetings and academics and extra helps and monitored study halls…
”He’s a kid that’s done everything we’ve asked him over three years. He’s a kid that’s developed and gotten more mature every year over three years, and he’s as good of a person as he is a football player, and that’s what we’re really happy about.”
Phommachanh made his first visit to Clemson in March, when he received an offer from the Tigers. He then returned to campus for the spring game on April 14 and gave his verbal commitment to Dabo Swinney’s program that day.
Clemson quarterbacks coach Brandon Streeter serves as Phommachanh’s primary recruiter and played a big role in helping the Tigers land his services.
“Obviously over the last 18 months, there’s been a lot of coaches and schools through here, and Clemson’s been impressive, especially Coach Streeter,” Brennan said. “He’s been a presence here when he’s allowed to be here. He does it by the books. He’s honest. I think we’ve had some coaches that come through here that aren’t as honest as he is. He’s a good guy, and I think Taisun felt that the minute that he met him, and I think that goes a long way for a kid like him.”
Brennan sees a bright future for Phommachanh at Clemson and thinks his time at Avon Old Farms will help him make a smooth adjustment to the next level.
“He’s a competitor, he’s a leader,” Brennan said. “I think being here has prepared him really well. I think this is a unique place that offers opportunities to get guys ready for that environment. So, I think he’ll transition really nicely.”