CLEMSON — The month of June has ended the recruiting dead period, but the arrival of summer also means the rest of the true freshmen will be reporting to campus. After 12 players from the class of 2022 arrived for spring practice, the remaining 5-7 signees — the program is still awaiting MLB Draft decisions from quarterbacks Bubba Chandler and Will Taylor — will report to school on June 24.
Due to their early arrival, spring enrollees get more attention due to being on campus longer and having participated in spring practice. However, there are a couple of late arrivals in the class of 2022 who could make a splash this fall. Here are the three players to monitor as summer continues and the season approaches.
The highest-ranked recruit in Clemson’s 2021 class, the five-star offensive tackle arrives as the program’s top-rated offensive lineman since Jackson Carman. Leigh had heavy interest from Alabama, Oklahoma, LSU, and Ohio State before deciding to sign with the Tigers. At 6-foot-5 and 270 pounds, Leigh needs to add some weight but has the athleticism to play either tackle or guard spot.
Clemson is determined to build depth on the offensive line, and Leigh will likely be an important part of that equation.
Another five-star prospect, Carter will arrive at Clemson with a positionless skillset. Listed as a linebacker by most of the major recruiting services, Clemson plans on using the 6-foot-1, 220-pound defender at safety first but the defensive staff does not want to pigeonhole the talented newcomer.
“They’re gonna start me out playing like Nickel and Sam,” Carter told ClemsonSports.com last month. “And as time goes on, they’re gonna teach me new stuff, like dime and some Mike and Will. But they’re gonna start me off at Nickel and Sam, just really moving me around like they did Isaiah Simmons.”
The Simmons comp comes up frequently with Carter. This is a hybrid player who can succeed at a lot of positions. Look for Clemson to experiment with the rookie in multiple places this season before finding a permanent home for the elite talent.
When recruiting South Florida, every college football program is looking for speed. Luckily for Clemson, that is exactly what Stellato can provide at wide receiver.
“One of Troy’s greatest attributes is his speed,” said wide receivers coach Tyler Grisham on signing day. “It’s the first thing you think of. He’s really able to get open and create separation. That’s what you want from a guy that can really play anywhere but especially the slot.”
The four-star receiver recorded a 40-yard dash time of 4.42 at The Opening recruiting event in February 2019. As a junior, Stellato averaged 17 yards per catch showing big-play capability. Every offense is looking for a speedster to stretch defenses vertically. Stellato could provide that for Clemson very soon.