Swinney: Trotter ‘too good a prospect for us to pass on’

Swinney: Trotter ‘too good a prospect for us to pass on’


Swinney: Trotter ‘too good a prospect for us to pass on’


The Clemson football program picked up a local offensive lineman on National Signing Day on Wednesday when Dorman (Roebuck, S.C.) High School product Mason Trotter signed with the Tigers.

Head coach Dabo Swinney likes what his team is getting in the 6-foot-3, 270-pound Trotter, who picked Clemson over offers from Louisville, Syracuse, Appalachian State and Coastal Carolina.

“Mason’s football IQ is off the charts,” Swinney said. “This is a really smart player. He’s got a great body on him. He’s going to be able to play three (offensive line) spots for us …

“At the end of the day, he was just too good a prospect for us to pass on. So, I’m glad it worked out.”

A three-year starter who started 41 career games for Dorman, Trotter was a Shrine Bowl selection and earned second-team all-state honors from USA Today in 2018.

Clemson has signed several other players from Dorman during Dabo Swinney’s tenure, including Brandon Thomas (2009), Charone Peake (2011), Adam Humphries (2011), Patrick DeStefano (2012) and most recently Jordan McFadden (2018).

Trotter was a high school teammate of McFadden, a redshirt freshman offensive lineman, as well as Clemson quarterback Ben Batson.

“First of all, the program (Trotter) comes from and his coaches over there are guys we have a ton of respect for, and they have always been right. Always. Not sometimes – they’ve always been right,” Swinney said of Dorman’s coaches.

“So, I have a lot of respect for (head) coach (David) Gutshall, (assistant head) coach (Michael) Lancaster, coach (Mark) Dempsey, that group over there. They do an unbelievable job, and every kid we’ve had that’s come out of that program has been ready. They’ve been prepared and they’ve been able to transition well.”

Clemson signed Trotter as a grayshirt, which would put him on scholarship prior to the 2020 season, though it is possible he could be placed on scholarship earlier.

“Eventually he’ll be on scholarship,” Swinney said. “But we anticipate him being here in August, and when his scholarship is going to start, we’ll see how it all goes.”

Trotter camped at Clemson last summer, attended the Louisville game at Death Valley in November and then made his official visit to campus in January. He took an official visit to Louisville last month as well.

In his last two seasons at Dorman, Trotter recorded a combined 55 pancake blocks while helping the team to back-to-back Region II-AAAAA titles. Trotter helped lead Dorman to an 11-2 record and a berth in the third round of the SCHSL AAAAA playoffs in 2018.

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