Two seniors will lead a group that's full of redshirt freshmen.
Projected starters: Senior Garry Peters, Redshirt Freshman Mackensie Alexander
Backups: Martin Jenkins would've graduated last year had it not been for an injury that kept him off the field in 2012. Most of his playing time at Clemson has been as an inside cornerback, at the nickel and dime position. Since he's not included among the litany of players on the depth chart at the nickel/SAM position, it's probably safe to assume he'll play either cornerback or dime back during his final season. Cordrea Tankersley exited the spring as the starter opposite of Alexander. While he's always been a personal favorite, Peters gets the long-term edge because of his experience. But Tankersley is one of the fastest guys on the team, he's also long and has good ball skills. The other 2013 signees are expected to work into the mix next season as reserves: Marcus Edmond, Adrian Baker and, maybe, Ryan Carter.
What we learned this spring: Just when we thought Peters was done with Dabo Swinney's dog house, we learned right before spring ball that he would sit out the Georgia game. But, when Peters and the other three offenders met with reporters before the spring game, it was obvious that the message had gotten across to each of the four. As expected, Alexander drew rave reviews throughout the spring. For the first several days, he was a topic of conversation, and it wasn't just a story being run into the ground by the folks with pens, pads and microphones. Swinney, the coordinators and several players regularly mentioned with without being prompted. The coaches appeared to be pleasantly surprised with the progress of Tankersley -- his name emerged towards the end of spring ball.
Long-term: Because so many cornerbacks were signed in 2013, it wasn't a position of need in 2014. That's why Clemson didn't sign any. There are two committed to the 2015 class: Juwuan Briscoe and Kaleb Chalmers, both of whom are three-star prospects. For now, it looks like they'll be the only two takes in this cycle.
Moving forward: Even though he's suspended for the first game of the season, Peters is a projected starter for the rest of the way. He's a senior, has plenty of experience and has shown that he can be a productive asset. Alexander, who missed all of 2013 because of an injury, was expected to make an impact as a true freshman. Tankersley and Jenkins are projected to be regular contributors, too.
Summer Position Glimpse: Cornerback
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