While out and about on the recruiting trail last week, one of the stops made by Clemson defensive ends coach Lemanski Hall was to check in on a class of 2023 defensive lineman from the Tar Heel State with close to two dozen scholarship offers.
New Bern (N.C.) High School four-star Keith Sampson Jr. drew a school visit from Hall on Thursday.
“It was really cool just to see that he went out of his way to come see me,” Sampson said to The Clemson Insider. “My coach told me he was in Alabama, I want to say, literally the day before, and he hopped on the plane and came to my school.”
Sampson (6-4, 285) couldn’t speak with Hall directly at the school due to NCAA rules, but Hall conveyed a message to Sampson through Sampson’s coach.
“He was just telling me to keep working, and that they watched my film and will be talking to me in a couple of days about hopefully offering me,” Sampson said. “But we’ll see how that goes.”
Sampson, a junior, lists offers from Alabama, Georgia, Texas A&M, Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan, NC State, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Florida State among numerous others.
While the Tigers have not offered Sampson to date, they continue to show interest, and he has been staying in contact with Hall as well as defensive tackles coach Todd Bates. Clemson is recruiting him as a D-tackle.
“I would say it’s been like every week or every other week, I would say,” Sampson said of how often he hears from the coaches.
Sampson feels his relationship with Hall and Bates is a growing one.
“It’s still new, but at the same time it’s not,” he said. “It’s like in the middle stage.”
Sampson attended the season opener between Clemson and Georgia in Charlotte and also made game visits this season to NC State, North Carolina, Ohio State and East Carolina. He most recently visited Clemson this past June and has also participated in the Dabo Swinney Camp in the past.
Sampson isn’t sure when he might make it back to Clemson but intends to return to Tiger Town at some point moving forward.
“I don’t know, but I do plan to come back up there,” he said.
Sampson hopes to add Clemson to the extensive offer list he has already compiled.
“It would be pretty cool just to see if I can get an offer from them because Clemson has always been a good school,” he said. “They’ve had a down year, but they bounce back. So, it would be pretty cool just to see if I can get an offer from them.”
Sampson is ranked as high as the No. 144 overall prospect in the 2023 class by 247Sports, which considers him the No. 20 defensive lineman in the class. He suffered an injury during his junior season this year, fracturing the scaphoid bone in his wrist, and has a cast on it right now but expects to get it off in January.
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