'We hit a home run getting that kid': Freshman tight end continues to impress

'We hit a home run getting that kid': Freshman tight end continues to impress

Football

'We hit a home run getting that kid': Freshman tight end continues to impress

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Clemson has a group of tight ends that head coach Dabo Swinney believes is in line for a big season.

Whether or not Josh Sapp becomes part of those plans immediately remains to be seen, but the true freshman continues to impress at the position during preseason camp.

“I’m going to tell you, Josh Sapp, we hit a home run getting that kid,” Swinney said this week. “We’re lucky to have him. He’s a really good player.”

Swinney said the 6-foot-1, 240-pound Sapp has “made a play every day” during camp that’s caught the collective eye of the coaching staff. That includes a touchdown catch to start the scoring in the Tigers’ final full-scale scrimmage Wednesday.

Of course, Sapp arrived at Clemson this summer plenty familiar with the program he signed with December. A legacy recruit out of Greenville Senior High School, Sapp is the son of former Tiger Patrick Sapp, a quarterback and linebacker for Clemson in the early 1990s.

The gene pool sticks out with the younger Sapp when it comes to his athleticism and versatility, Swinney said.

“He’s probably a lot like his dad was. Just a diverse, savvy guy,” Swinney said. “You really study Josh Sapp, he’s played everything from quarterback to tight end to receiver to running back to d-end to linebacker. He’s played a lot of things in his career. And he’s a really good basketball player. He’s just a big athlete. This kid is 240 pounds with really soft hands, and he’s hard to tackle.”

Sapp is part of a tight end room that also includes Davis Allen, Sage Ennis, Jake Briningstool and Luke Price. Allen, who could be taken in next year’s NFL Draft, is the leader of the group while Swinney said Briningstool, a former blue-chip recruit, is the best he’s been at Clemson heading into his sophomore season. Ennis and Allen are healthy again after missing the spring with injuries while Price brings plenty of experience and leadership to the position as a super senior.

Swinney said Sapp is still doing a lot of learning as a first-year player trying to pick up the Tigers’ offense. That combined with those ahead of him on the depth chart could make playing time hard to come by this fall, but Sapp continues to do what he can to try to change that.

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