Post-spring review: CB

The cornerback position has seen its share of ups and downs over the last couple of seasons, but things could be on the uptick this fall.

In the mix

Darius Robinson: His junior season was cut short after fracturing an ankle in the Virginia Tech game. Over seven games [six starts] in 2012, Robinson played 281 snaps, logging 13 tackles, two pass breakups and an interception.

Bashaud Breeland: Like Robinson, an injury in the Virginia Tech game curbed Breeland's second half of last season. After the injury, he missed three games and played only five snaps in another. As a redshirt sophomore, had 32 tackles, three pass breakups and a sack in 369 snaps.

Martin Jenkins: Jenkins was forced to sit out the 2012 season after undergoing groin surgery during preseason camp. Since he didn't redshirt back in 2010, Jenkins used 2012 as his redshirt season.

Garry Peters: After bouncing around the secondary, Peters has found a home at cornerback. He was pressed into duty last season with the injuries to Robinson, Breeland and Jenkins. In 552 snaps, Peters had 20 tackles, eight pass breakups and an interception. Like Breeland and Jenkins, Peters is a redshirt junior.

Joining the mix

The Clemson coaching staff identified cornerback as one of the biggest needs in the 2013 haul -- they signed at least three in February.

Four-star Mackensie Alexander is among one of the headlining members of the entire class, not just the position. He's joined by three-star Adrian Baker and two-star Marcus Edmond.


Wesley Green is one of Clemson's top CB targets in 2014.
Four-star Cordrea Tankersley and two-star Ryan Carter could also spend time at cornerback during their careers.

As of right now, one cornerback will be signed in 2014. Offers have been issued to several rising senior cornerbacks, including four-star Wesley Green of King High School in Lithonia, Ga. and Summerville three-star Darin Smalls.

Clemson also has offers out to several other four-star prospects: Jalen Tabor, Treon Harris and Arrion Springs.

Key storyline

Entering spring practice, things were wide-open at the position. And, after the close of spring practice, that remains the status quo.

Both cornerback spots are listed as OR: Peters or Breeland and Robinson or Jenkins.

So one has to assume that Alexander, Baker and Edmond will all have an opportunity to not only earn playing time, but to also a starting spot.

Candidate to be a star

Many folks would pencil in Alexander as the candidate to be a star. While it's certainly possible that he has a solid first-year on campus, not many freshmen cornerbacks make big-time impacts from day one.

Plus, Breeland is still on the roster. When healthy, he's been pretty solid over the first two seasons of his playing career. Look for him to turn the corner in 2013 and have a strong season, one that could put him in the conversation for All-ACC recognition.

Looking ahead to the fall

Freshmen will play this fall. The question is -- how many?

Odds are one of them will. And most believe Alexander has the greatest chance of not only playing, but also making an impact this season.

All four of the upperclassmen are expected to have roles. Breeland is projected as a breakout candidate. Jenkins' role will probably be in a nickel or dime capacity. Robinson and Peters will work on the outside.

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