First Clemson gameday visit going to be hard to top for rising Alabama lineman

First Clemson gameday visit going to be hard to top for rising Alabama lineman

Recruiting

First Clemson gameday visit going to be hard to top for rising Alabama lineman

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A fast-rising offensive lineman from the Yellowhammer State traveled to Tiger Town for an unofficial visit earlier this month.

Daphne (Ala.) Bayside Academy junior Graham Uter — a 6-foot-5, 275-pound prospect in the class of 2024 — made his way to Clemson for the Louisiana Tech game on Saturday, Sept. 17.

“It was really cool to get to meet all the coaches,” Uter told The Clemson Insider in a phone interview recently. “Especially getting to know Coach (Thomas) Austin and Coach (Brandon) Thomas more. The facilities were really cool. It’s probably one of the best facilities I’ve ever seen. The campus was awesome.”

Uter got to eat a pregame meal with Clemson’s offensive line coach and Thomas, who is currently a graduate assistant on Dabo Swinney’s staff. Uter said that they discussed his recruiting stage, how it’s all going to work from here on out and what they’re recruiting him for. 

“For sure,” Uter said when asked if he felt like he strengthened his relationship with Clemson’s staff. “I got to have pretty long conversations with them during the pregame time. Coach Brandon Thomas actually took me around on a tour of the facilities and we met up with Coach Austin.”

According to Uter, both Austin and Thomas showed him how they run the offensive linemen at Clemson. He got to know both coaches pretty well and even got to meet Austin’s kids and his family, which Uter said was “pretty cool.”

Following the pregame festivities with the coaching staff, Uter finally got to experience his first college football game day visit.

“It’s cool to see how the fans all love Clemson,” Uter said of the gameday atmosphere in The Valley. “They’re all fans and nice people up there. It was cool to see how the players, whenever they were warming up, how locked in and focused they were. How important it is to all these coaches — they were all getting hyped and getting their players ready to play.”

Needless to say, his first experience in The Valley set the bar relatively high. 

“I feel like it’s gonna be hard to top that,” he said. “That was one of the cooler experiences in my life. I definitely want to go back this spring and tour the campus more. That would be cool.”

As far as other visits are concerned, Uter is trying to line up gameday visits to Troy and UAB, but right now, he’s focused on Friday nights and an important junior season

“It’s pretty much more local stuff,” Uter said in regards to taking potential visits. “Clemson’s just one of my favorite schools that I’ve been to. It’s an immediate yes whenever they ask me to come for a game day visit.”

Uter feels like he’s “definitely” on Clemson’s recruiting board and that the Tigers will continue to evaluate him as he continues to progress throughout his junior season.

“They told me that if I get some good game film out and I keep doing what they want to see, they’re gonna get me back up there in the spring and I’ll come around the campus on the golf cart and stuff like that,” he said. “That’s what Coach Thomas Austin told me.”

Since Sept. 1, Uter has heard from programs like Troy, UAB and Memphis, in addition to Clemson. He mentioned that a couple of other schools have called his head coach and notified him that they would be recruiting Uter going forward.

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