4-star DT impressed by ‘unique’ Clemson fans

4-star DT impressed by ‘unique’ Clemson fans


4-star DT impressed by ‘unique’ Clemson fans


Woodbridge (Va.) four-star defensive tackle James Gillespie was among the recruits that visited Clemson last Saturday to attend the game against Charlotte.

More than 81,000 fans packed Death Valley to cheer on the top-ranked Tigers during their 52-10 victory, and Gillespie came away very impressed by the Clemson faithful.

“I really liked it. It was probably the most unique fan base I’ve ever seen out of all my visits I’ve been to,” Gillespie said.

The class of 2021 prospect felt that the environment in the Valley “just had a different vibe to it.”

“It was sold out. Everybody was screaming, everybody was up jumping,” Gillespie said. “It was just different. You could just feel the energy.”

Saturday marked Gillespie’s fourth visit to Clemson. He participated in the Dabo Swinney Camp as a freshman, attended the Louisville game as a sophomore last fall and returned for the Orange & White spring game this past April.

Gillespie has been able to speak with defensive tackles coach Todd Bates and defensive coordinator Brent Venables, his area recruiter, while on campus in the past.

“When I talked to them, they said they love my tape and they’re going to keep on inviting me through the process,” Gillespie said.

Gillespie has garnered offers from Penn State, Michigan, Kentucky, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Maryland among others. Michigan is the only other school that Gillespie plans to visit for sure this season.

Gillespie says he has not given any thought to when he wants to commit, but knows that Clemson “would definitely be one of [his] top schools” if it decides to extend an offer moving forward.

“When I look at Clemson, I think it’s just more like family,” he said. “That’s what I really like about it, how it’s more family based … It’s not all about just business, and they keep it more a family type program. And how the whole team has chemistry with each other, I think that’s pretty cool. You don’t really see that at a lot of places.”

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