Quick Hits with Etta Etta-Tawo

Incoming freshman talks about his priorities both on and off the field.

DL Etta Etta-Tawo
6-3, 294, 5.2
McEachern High School
Powder Springs, Georgia
NR: 70 Rating: ***

The Stats: Etta Etta-Tawo recorded 32 tackles and four tackles for loss and a forced fumble through as a senior. As a junior, he totaled 60 tackles, three sacks, seven quarterback hurries, 11 tackles for loss, and two caused fumbles. Etta-Tawo, who was recruited to Clemson by assistant coach Ron West, chose the Tigers over offers from Maryland, Stanford, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Vanderbilt, and Georgia Tech.

Strength: An excellent student, Etta-Tawo is relatively new to the game and has a lot of upside. He's also a hard worker in the weight room. "I can bench 330 lbs, clean 615 lbs and squat 475 lbs. I'm working out with my team every Monday and Thursday just running and lifting weights," said Etta-Tawo. "I'm best at stopping the run. My coaches say that since I'm so good at cleans, I get a good explosion. But I need to work on using my hands more in the pass rush, and just my overall technique in general."

Why Clemson? "It was just that after a while it got on my mind that this recruiting stuff is getting to where I just made up my mind that Clemson was the place to go," said Etta-Tawo. "I liked the way Coach West had been calling me and showing a lot of interest. After watching that South Carolina game in November, that is what triggered my mind to set that goal to just go ahead and commit."

Tidbit: Etta-Tawo, like many of his other future teammates, really enjoyed his official visit to Clemson in mid-January. "I'd give the visit about a 10," said Etta-Tawo. "Probably the biggest highlight for me was watching the highlight film they put together from last season. That was awesome. We also had a great time when we went out. It was just a good weekend overall."

Final Shot: The Georgia native has always let it be known that academics are at the forefront of his daily lifestyle. "Academics come first because my dad has a PHD and my mom has two Masters degrees, so they put a lot of importance on that. The athletic part comes after that," said Etta-Tawo.

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