Clemson currently has 10 commitments in its 2021 recruiting class, which ranks in the top five nationally right now, and plans to sign around 18 prospects in this cycle according to Dabo Swinney.
In our Breaking Down Clemson’s Top Targets series, The Clemson Insider takes an in-depth look at some of the top names on the Tigers’ board, where they stand with them and more. In this article, we focus on Tristan Leigh:
Hometown (High School): Fairfax, Va. (Robinson Secondary)
Height, Weight: 6-6, 285
Power Five Offers: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Boston College, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Indiana, Louisville, LSU, Maryland, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Missouri, NC State, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Oregon, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Purdue, Rutgers, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Texas A&M, USC, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, West Virginia
Ratings/Rankings: 5-star, No. 3 OT, No. 2 state. No. 13 national (247Sports Composite); 4-star, No. 6 OT, No. 3 state, No. 30 national (247Sports); 4-star, No. 4 OT, No. 2 state, No. 28 national (Rivals); 4-star, No. 5 OT, No. 3 state, No. 23 national (ESPN)
Clemson played host to Leigh for the Florida State game last October, and he was most recently on campus for the program’s elite junior day in late January when he picked up an offer from the Tigers.
Leigh, who lists around 40 offers, narrowed his field of suitors last week when he named a top 15 schools list which included Clemson along with Georgia, Florida State, Virginia, LSU, Florida, Virginia Tech, Miami, Penn State, Oklahoma, Maryland, UCF, Ohio State, Alabama and Southern Cal.
There is a long way to go in Leigh’s recruitment, and it looks like he won’t make his decision any time soon. He plans to play in the 2021 All-American Bowl in San Antonio in January, so it is possible he waits to announce his college choice until then.
Where Clemson stands:
Clemson is one of the legitimate contenders for Leigh’s commitment among the schools in his top 15. Penn State is perhaps the biggest competition, but several other schools such as LSU, Ohio State, Alabama and Oklahoma are squarely in the hunt.
Leigh came away from his visits to Clemson very impressed, and the Tigers are viewed as the frontrunner right now, though there is still plenty of work to be done with Leigh not close to a decision.
Look for Clemson to push to get Leigh back on campus after the NCAA’s dead period, which was recently extended through June 30, eventually comes to an end.
What Clemson would get:
A five-star recruit per the 247Sports Composite and consensus top-30 national prospect according to the major recruiting services, Leigh did not allow a sack and earned first-team all-state honors as a junior last season.
Leigh is what you look for in an offensive tackle with his tall and wide, lengthy frame, to go with his athleticism and physicality. He has the type of mean streak you want in a lineman and is a mauler when run blocking. Forceful at the point of attack, Leigh punches well and has shown the ability to consistently use his legs and strength to drive defenders backward and into the grass. While there is not as much film of Leigh pass blocking as opposed to run blocking, he possesses the quick feet and lateral movement skills to be a strong pass protector as well.
A high-ceiling player, Leigh would be an outstanding addition to the Tigers’ O-line if they can land him. He could potentially be the future at left tackle following Jackson Carman.
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