What recruiting rankings tell us about the Clemson-Wake Forest game

What recruiting rankings tell us about the Clemson-Wake Forest game


What recruiting rankings tell us about the Clemson-Wake Forest game


The Clemson Insider thought it would be interesting to analyze the matchups on Clemson’s 2021 schedule from a recruiting standpoint by going back and looking at where the Tigers’ projected starters were ranked as recruits versus where the projected starters for their opponents were ranked.

In this article, we break down Clemson’s game against Wake Forest  on Saturday, Nov. 20 at Memorial Stadium. Below is a rundown of the projected starters for both teams, as it stands now, and their high school star ratings and prospect rankings according to the 247Sports Composite:

Clemson offense:

LT – Jordan McFadden (3-star, No. 819 national, No. 66 OT)

LG – Marcus Tate (4-star, No. 127 national, No. 8 IOL)

C – Hunter Rayburn (3-star, No. 485 national, No. 28 OG)

or C – Mason Trotter (3-star, No. 3403 national, No. 195 OG)

RG – Will Putnam (4-star, No. 101 national, No. 5 OG)

RT – Walker Parks (4-star, No. 50 national, No. 5 OT)

TE – Davis Allen (3-star, No. 807 national, No. 39 TE)

WR – Dacari Collins (4-star, No. 181 national, No. 32 WR)

QB – D.J. Uiagalelei (5-star, No. 10 national, No. 1 PRO)

RB – Kobe Pace (3-star, No. 451 national, No. 32 RB)

or RB – Will Shipley (5-star, No. 32 national, No. 2 RB)

WR – Beaux Collins (4-star, No. 86 national, No. 12 WR)

WR – E.J. Williams (4-star, No. 69 national, No. 13 WR)

Clemson defense:

DE – Myles Murphy (5-star, No. 7 national, No. 1 SDE)

or DE – K.J. Henry (5-star, No. 14 national, No. 3 WDE)

DT – Tyler Davis (4-star, No. 137 national, No. 12 DT)

DT – Ruke Orhorhoro (3-star, No. 745 national, No. 49 SDE)

DE – Xavier Thomas (5-star, No. 3 national, No. 1 SDE)

or DE – Justin Mascoll (4-star, No. 142 national, No. 9 WDE)

SLB/NB – Trenton Simpson (5-star, No. 26 national, No. 1 OLB)

or SLB/NB – Malcolm Greene (4-star, No. 282 national, No. 29 S)

MLB – James Skalski (3-star, No. 680 national, No. 44 OLB)

WLB – Baylon Spector (3-star, No. 609 national, No. 45 S)

CB – Andrew Booth Jr. (5-star, No. 23 national, No. 2 CB)

SS – Andrew Mukuba (4-star, No. 167 national, No. 8 S)

FS – Nolan Turner (NR)

CB – Mario Goodrich (4-star, No. 114 national, No. 4 ATH)

Wake Forest offense:

QB – Sam Hartman (3-star, No. 767 national, No. 32 PRO)

RB – Christian Beal-Smith (3-star, No. 858 national, No. 16 APB)

WR – Jaquarii Roberson (3-star, No. 1393 national, No. 193 WR)

WR – A.T. Perry (3-star, No. 1418 national, No. 205 WR)

WR – Taylor Morin (3-star, No. 1934 national, No. 161 ATH)

TE – Brandon Chapman (3-star, No. 989 national, No. 51 TE)

LT – Zach Tom (3-star, No. 1593 national, No. 150 OT)

LG – Sean Maginn (2-star, No. 2260 national, No. 105 OG)

C – Michael Jurgens (3-star, No. 964 national, No. 40 OG)

RG – Loic Ngassam Nya (NR)

RT – DeVonte Gordon (3-star, No. 1015 national, No. 90 OT)

Wake Forest defense:

DE – Rondell Bothroyd (3-star, No. 1317 national, No. 66 SDE)

NT – Dion Bergan (3-star, No. 1706, No. 119 DT)

DT – Miles Fox (3-star, No. 1346 national, No. 90 DT)

DE – Ja’Corey Johns (3-star, No. 1192 national, No. 46 ILB)

LB– Luke Masterson (3-star, No. 1620 national, No. 107 S)

LB – Ryan Smenda, Jr. (3-star, No. 1124 national, No. 41 ILB)

ROV – Traveon Reed (NR)

CB – Ja’Sir Taylor (3-star, No. 1900 national, No. 132 ATH)

S – Zion Keith (3-star, No. 1605 national, No. 230 WR)

S – Nick Andersen (NR)

CB – Caelen Carson (3-star, No. 1726 national, No. 149 CB)


There is unsurprisingly a stark contrast in the talent of Clemson and Wake Forest’s projected starters, at least on paper, but as we’ve come to learn this season, that doesn’t matter once you step out on the field. The Demon Deacons have scored 35+ points in every game this season and came in at No. 10 in the latest College Football Playoff rankings. On the other hand, Clemson’s in desperate need of a win at home with its ACC Championship hopes still hanging by a thread. As Coach Dabo Swinney put it, Clemson is a “wounded dog” on the side of the road, but they’re still very much alive.

**All ratings/rankings according to the 247Sports Composite


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