The Clemson Insider recently caught up with a defensive lineman in the 2023 recruiting class, who has recently been on Clemson’s radar.
Clemson has recently started to show more interest in Westside (Jacksonville, Fla.) four-star defensive tackle Jordan “Big Baby” Hall,
Wes Goodwin reached out to Hall last week. According to Hall, Clemson’s defensive coordinator/linebackers told the big-time defensive lineman that he likes his film and likes the way he plays. Goodwin also asked him if he had any interest in Clemson.
“We were really just having a good conversation and building a bond,” Hall said. “I actually like him. He’s a cool dude. It was a pretty standard conversation, nothing much to it. He was showing that he was interested in me, though.
This was the first time that Hall was able to speak with a member of Clemson’s coaching staff. During the regular season, those on Clemson’s recruiting staff sent him graphics and things of that nature. They consistently kept in touch and now that torch has been passed over to Goodwin.
Despite the coaching changes that Clemson has undergone, Hall has a lot of confidence in the way the program develops players at his position. He’s actually a big fan of Bryan Bresee.
“I actually like watching a lot of Bryan Bresee,” he said. “I like to model my game after him sometimes, we have the same body type. I feel as if going there, competing with those guys and learning from and picking their brains and picking the defensive line coach’s (Nick Eason) brain every day, I feel like I’d be a better player overall.”
Hall would like to take a visit to Clemson this spring. He did take a couple of game-day visits this past season, but he wasn’t able to leave the state of Florida. He didn’t get the chance to see as many different types of atmospheres and places as he would’ve liked to, but Hall still went to games at Florida, Florida State and UCF.
As far as his recruitment is concerned, Hall is just having fun with the process. He’d like to narrow down the list of teams that he’s focusing on in the summer, but for now, he’s taking it step-by-step.
He currently holds offers from schools like the University of Miami, Florida State, UCF, UConn, Ole Miss, Marshall, Georgia, Kentucky, Arizona State, Indiana, Michigan, Georgia Tech, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Oregon and Louisville.
With that being said, what is he looking for in a school at the next level?
“Honestly, my major, that’s first,” Hall said. “If they got a major that I like, I’ll most definitely move that school up on my list. The coaching staff, specifically my position coach and I’ll say the strength and conditioning coach because I’ll be spending the majority of my time with them. As long as I have a good relationship with the coaching staff, I can get along with them and they seem as if they want me to be there, I’m all for it.
“Really just a home away from home. That’s really what a recruit is looking for, especially me. I just want to be somewhere that I can trust and that I believe that I can thrive in and I can just go in and compete for a starting spot.”
This past season was probably Hall’s best to date. He feels like he exceeded his expectations. He didn’t have a defensive line coach at all during his junior campaign. He was going off based on what he knew and what he thought he could help himself do.
“There wasn’t really too much I could do,” he said. “I was coaching up other kids. It was a tough season, but I feel like overall as a player, I did well.”
Hall expects those things to get solved, but he doesn’t know if he’ll be staying at Westside for his senior season. His head coach, who has played a big hand in his recruitment, has since left. He has to weigh his options going forward.
Talking about what he can do on the field, Hall is explosive, physical and quick. He’s a team player, first and foremost. If you need him to play offensive line, he’s playing it. If you need him to get five sacks, he’s doing it. He’s just an overall good athlete and football player, but he’s a dominant force at defensive tackle and defensive end.
You may be asking yourself, where does that “Big Baby” moniker come from? Don’t worry, we saved the best for last.
His nickname actually came from his old defensive coordinator. Hall was 14-years-old at the time, fresh out of eighth grade. He was invited to future high school’s summer camp and they had him starting on both sides of the ball at right tackle and defensive tackle, respectively.
“I was getting upset and frustrated because the team we were going against — the majority of them were juniors and seniors — and they were just overpowering,” Hall recalls. “I was faster than them and I could get some of them because I was just naturally strong. But, I was just getting in my head and getting frustrated. I had tears streaming down my face. I was just a big ‘ol kid at that moment in time.”
Once they got back into the dorm, everybody was telling him that he was “too old” to be crying, pouting and getting upset. One of the players told him that they’d never seen a senior act like that. That’s when his DC stepped in and quipped that Hall wasn’t a senior, he was just 14-years-old.
Everyone in the room was shocked.
“He’s just a big ‘ol baby,” Hall recalls his defensive coordinator saying.
He didn’t like the nickname at first, but Hall has since embraced it. It’s stuck ever since.
“Everybody knows me as it, so I might as well let it stick,” he added.
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