4-star Tennessee TE impressed by Clemson's culture and coaching staff

4-star Tennessee TE impressed by Clemson's culture and coaching staff

Recruiting

4-star Tennessee TE impressed by Clemson's culture and coaching staff

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For the first weekend of Dabo Swinney Camp, there were numerous highly-touted tight ends on campus.

That includes Thompson’s Station (TN.) Independence 4-star TE Ty Lockwood, who is the No. 2 ranked prospect in the state of Tennessee and No. 4 tight end prospect in the Class of 2023, per 247Sports Composite.

Lockwood (6-5, 225) thoroughly enjoyed his time camping at Clemson and took a lot away from his visit.

“It was a lot of fun,” Lockwood told The Clemson Insider. “I went to the camp first and I was working with Coach Tony Elliott. We walked around the facilities and looked at everything. Clemson’s really nice. It’s got to be one of the nicest in the nation, facilities-wise and obviously, coaching-wise.”

“The best thing for me to look at was the staff that Dabo picked out, quality dudes all around the board,” he added.

In his interview with TCI, Lockwood kept harping on two things that stood out to him about Clemson: the culture and the coaches.

Lockwood hadn’t spoken to Elliot much. Before Swinney Camp, he just had a brief conversation with Clemson’s offensive coordinator and tight ends coach about camp dates. Lockwood has mainly been in contact with Tigers’ defensive ends coach Lemanski Hall, who he said helped him set up last Saturday’s visit.

“They said they really liked it,” Lockwood said regarding the feedback he received on his performance at Swinney Camp. “They were happy to get me out there. It was kind of good for me to get out there because they said they really liked me.”

He understands how Clemson operates and how its rather “slow” with the process, but he’d rather it be that way. Lockwood also feels like he got himself a head start, being one of the first Class of ‘23 tight ends to get himself on campus and workout in front of Clemson’s staff, he added.

“Even without the offer, I have to say, they have to be top-5,” Lockwood said. “It was a great experience and just a ton of fun. Working with Coach Elliot was a great experience because he talked me up and I learned a ton from camp by himself. He’s got a great story and he’s a great dude. They have to be top-5.”

Lockwood came to Clemson with the opportunity to work out with some of the best tight ends in the country. Greer (S.C.) 4-star TE Jaleel Skinner and Bellflower (Ca.) St. John Bosco 4-star DE/TE Matayo Uiagalelei both worked out alongside Lockwood during last Saturday’s afternoon session.

“Those guys are really good, they’re really skilled,” Lockwood said. “I had competition around me and I made sure I kept up with it. Jaleel and Matayo, they’re both studs. It was fun to get to work out with them.”

When asked what stood out most to him about his visit, Lockwood yet again circled back to Clemson’s coaching staff.

“The coaching staff, just how quality the dudes are,” he said. “One thing that I took away from the Clemson camp, Dabo was saying ‘you get the best out of yourself, when you surround yourself with the right dudes,” so he’s surrounding himself with dudes of wisdom. Every single one of those guys has a good background, great story. 

“That’s something I took away from [Swinney Camp] and now I’m going to implement that in my recruiting. I’m gonna be looking for that a ton, how well I mesh with the guys, how good the program is. The culture, is it great there? Is it not?”

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