Hall making his case

CLEMSON - Rashard Hall is becoming quite the ball-hawking safety and is making it hard for defensive coordinator Kevin Steele to keep him off the field.

A true student of the game, Steele has gone so far as to dubbing him professor Hall on the bus in front of his teammates.

"I just really cling on to everything the coaches say," Hall said.

He's willing to ask a lot of questions, a trait he picked up from his mother, who told him there's no such thing as a dumb one.

"Even if something seems simple I'll ask if I don't understand. In the meetings, that's all I really do," he said. "The other stuff just comes pretty natural."

DeAndre McDaniel appreciates Hall's willingness to communicate with him and the others in the secondary.

"I like when he's out there on the field with me because if I'm making a mistake, he's going to call me out," McDaniel said.

In meetings and film sessions, they've written notes to one another, asking questions, sharing opinions and giving each other feedback.

"He's into his books and everything. He wants to learn," McDaniel said.

Not only is Hall a student of the game but a good one in the classroom too. He sports a 3.06 GPA as a pre-business major and graduated high school with a 3.5.

"It's just the way I grew up. My parents are to blame mostly for that, I guess," he said. "I just try to put myself in good positions."

So far this year, he's put himself into plenty of good positions to make plays on the field. In 70 snaps against Middle Tennessee, Hall had 13 tackles. He only played special teams against Georgia Tech. In 26 snaps against Boston College, he made six tackles and had an interception.

In an ongoing, back-and-forth battle with Sadat Chambers for the nod at the nickel position, Hall was in the first-team nickel package last week.

Out of St. Augustine HS (FL) in 2008, he was a three-star rated safety by Scout.com and the No. 60 rated prospect for his position. His skills on the offensive side of the football didn't go unnoticed while playing in high school. He had offers from Mississippi State and South Carolina to play wide receiver.

It's become pretty apparent that defense is where he's best suited. Hall is all in with Steele's defense and doesn't want to leave any room for error, hence the attention to detail.

"I really felt confident going into the Middle Tennessee game. As far as feeling really comfortable with the defense, I would say by the end of camp I was loving the it," he said.

Educating himself as much as possible on the scheme has really helped Hall see the field more a year after he red-shirted.

Red-shirting last year was the best decision Hall could have made. Coming into school around 190 pounds, he got up to 205. That number dropped a little bit after camp, but the dedication to getting his body ready for college football has also paid dividends.

"After I set into doing that, it was a good thing," Hall said. "Throughout my red-shirt year, I was really focused on waiting on my time and making myself ready when that time came."

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