Looking Ahead: Running Back

Looking Ahead: Running Back


Looking Ahead: Running Back


With the 2020 recruiting cycle in the books, Clemson and other schools across the country can now turn more of their attention to prospects in the class of 2021.

In our Looking Ahead series, The Clemson Insider takes a position-by-position look at the Tigers’ top targets in the 2021 class. In this article, we focus on running backs:

Clemson has a commitment from Loganville (Ga.) Grayson four-star running back Phil Mafah, and technically, he occupies the one available spot that the Tigers had at his position in the 2021 class.

However, Clemson has its sights set on trying to land Matthews (N.C.) Weddington five-star all-purpose back Will Shipley and have continued to recruit him as an over-sign.

Although Shipley (5-11, 200) has not publicly narrowed down his list of two-dozen-plus offers, he has been focused on a smaller group of schools including Clemson, Notre Dame, NC State, Stanford and Ohio State.

The plan for Shipley is to take a few more visits in the spring and then go from there as he moves toward making a decision prior to his senior season.

Both of Shipley’s parents graduated from NC State, and those ties have kept the Wolfpack in the hunt. With that said, it looks like his recruitment could boil down to a battle between the Tigers and Fighting Irish.

Shipley is coming off a visit to Clemson for its elite junior day in late January and said afterward that the Tigers would get another visit before he makes his decision. Notre Dame, meanwhile, is slated to get Shipley back on campus toward the end of March.

It remains a tight race for Shipley’s commitment, but his elite junior day visit to Clemson last month further cemented the Tigers’ status as a top contender.

“It was great to be able to spend time with the coaches and get to see the campus,” Shipley told The Clemson Insider. “Before the visit, they were going to play a huge role in my recruitment, and it’s really at the same point. Clemson’s going to be at the top of it in the narrowed group. So, I think they kind of solidified it if anything.”

TCI’s previous Looking Ahead articles:

Wide Receiver



Defensive Tackle

Offensive Line

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