Two-sport standout Bubba Chandler could face a difficult decision in a few months.
Chandler signed with Clemson’s football program as a quarterback last December, and the hard-throwing right-handed pitcher from North Oconee High School in Bogart, Ga., is also committed to play for the Tigers’ baseball program.
However, there is the possibility Chandler could be taken as high as the first round in July’s MLB Draft, so he may be forced to choose between signing with a major league club or instead skipping out on the professional ranks for now to play both college football and baseball for the Tigers.
The Clemson Insider recently spoke with Chandler about the tough decision he might have to make and how he is approaching it.
“I don’t really know,” he said. “I’m just going to let it play out, let God lead the way. I haven’t really made up my mind. But if the opportunity presents itself come July, I’ll think about it. I really just don’t know.”
With Taisun Phommachanh suffering a torn Achilles in Saturday’s Orange & White Game, Clemson has just one healthy quarterback on its current roster besides starter D.J. Uiagalelei … walk-on Hunter Helms.
If Chandler does choose to forgo professional baseball and play for Clemson, he knows he will have the chance to compete for the Tigers’ backup quarterback job.
“It hurts to hear that Taisun got injured,” Chandler said. “I’ve never met him, but I’ve heard great things about him. But all I’m trying to do is come in and compete and do my job for the team.”
Along with Chandler, two other signal-callers are slated to enroll at Clemson this summer in scholarship quarterback Will Taylor – another dual-sport athlete who is also committed to play baseball for the Tigers – and preferred walk-on Billy Wiles.
All three attended Saturday’s spring game and hung out together, while Chandler also had an opportunity to chat with 2021 five-star Clemson offensive line signee Tristan Leigh of Robinson High School (Fairfax, Va.), and 2022 four-star Clemson quarterback commit Cade Klubnik of Austin (Texas) and Westlake High School.
“I ate lunch with Billy Wiles and Will Taylor,” Chandler said. “I talked to Tristan for a minute. Talked to Cade Klubnik for a minute.
“Me and Will, we’ve always been good buddies. But me and Billy are just now starting to know each other. He’s a great kid, very funny. Tristan, I talk to him every so often. But he’s going to be a force for many years, and just can’t wait.”
Saturday was Chandler’s first time at Death Valley since attending Clemson’s win over Miami last October.
After taking in the spring game, Chandler says he is itching to suit up in a Tiger uniform and play in Death Valley himself.
“Oh, yeah. I’m pumped up,” he said. “I’m missing football a little bit right now, so ready to get out there.”
What is the message from Clemson’s staff to Chandler as he prepares to enroll in late June?
“Really just focus on being a senior in high school,” he said. “It only happens once. But still have in the back of my mind that come in three months, I’m officially a Clemson Tiger and I’ve got to get ready to hopefully do something in the fall.”
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