Signing Day Targets: Cornerback

We now turn the focus back to the secondary and more specifically, the cornerback position. Several big names are already listing Clemson as one of their top 3 schools. Who will have the opportunity to join the Tigers' secondary in 2003? Details inside!

Perhaps it could be said that the Tigers turned the corner this past recruiting season by signing the likes of Buddy Williams, Justin Miller, and Jeff Francouer.

Of course, the saga doesn't end there as the secondary will continue to be a priority in 2003. Here is our initial look at some of the names looking at the Tigers already.

CB Marcus Clayton (5'8,170,4.4) Tallahassee, FL
An aggressive corner with tremendous pure speed and NFL bloodlines. He was the fastest player at the NIKE camp in Athens this weekend, running the 40-yard dash in 4.39 seconds. Registered 50 tackles and 7 INTs as a junior last season for Godby High School.

"I am stronger than most wide receivers and I think that helps me make up from being a little smaller. Plus, I have great speed to cover and great make up speed. Playing against the bigger guys is a challenge and they bring out the best in me," said Clayton in a recent interview with Jamie Newberg.

He's currently drawing interest from LSU, Florida State, Miami (Fla), Clemson, and Florida. Clayton has already scheduled trips to LSU and Miami this summer, and it is currently unclear whether or not he will camp at Clemson.

Paul Oliver (6'0,185,4.4) Kennesaw, GA
Paul Oliver was one of the bigtime stars at the NIKE camp in Athens this past weekend. He's a cover corner that plays with aggession and possesses incredible cover skills.

A whole range of schools have already offered, including Georgia, Texas, Clemson, South Carolina, and Michigan. He'll undoubtedly be the most heavily recruited defensive back in the Peach state next season.

"I love to be aggressive whether it is run support or playing the pass. I love to hit. As a kick returner, I let things develop and wait for a crack. Then, I turn on the jets." Oliver recorded 9 interceptions last season and also returned 4 punts for touchdowns.

He was also named the most outstanding corner at the NIKE camp in Athens last weekend. Need I say more?

He'll be a tough one to land, but he's mentioned the Tigers on more than one occasion.

CB Marcus Anderson (5'9,170,4.5) St. Petersburg, FL
First team All-County selection. His early favorites are Clemson, Florida State, Texas, Oklahoma, Boston College, Auburn.

Anderson is a multi-dimensional athlete with over 500 yards rushing and receiving last season. He already has offers on the table from Auburn and Iowa.

CB Nathan Trott (5'11, 175, 4.5) Vance, NC
Several schools are already showing interest, including North Carolina, BYU, Clemson, Duke, Army, and Virginia.

Nathan is also the son of former Clemson Defensive Coordinator Bob Trott. He also was the only underclassmen in a secondary that sent 3 players into the Division I ranks last year.

Trott was one of the most impressive defensive backs at the NIKE camp in Chapel Hill the weekend of the Tigers' spring football game. His current leader is Clemson.

CB Ty Erving (5'11,175,4.5) Batesburg-Leesville HS
Ty Erving had 73 tackles and 3 INT's last season for Batesburg-Leesville High School. Clemson is his current leader with Vanderbilt, South Carolina, and N.C. State running right behind.

Erving has shown great quickness on the field with outstanding recovery speed. He could develop into a top level "lockdown" cornerback prospect in 2002.

As you can see, this might not be the best year for cornerbacks in the state of South Carolina. There are a couple of guys out there, like Ko Simpson of Rock Hill, that could be a cover corner on the next level, but he more than likely will end up at safety. Erving will also likely be right there in the mix of things by the end of next year.

Rock Hill has another cornerback that will likely start gaining some more noteriety after the May Evaluation Period, his name is Jonothan Hefney. We'll have a more detailed report on him in the coming weeks.

We will continue to keep you updated on all these athletes as we receive more information.

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