Friendly rivalry

ROEBUCK, S.C. - There will be plenty of catches to go around Clemson next season with the departure of the Tigers' top three leading receivers: Jacoby Ford, Michael Palmer and C.J. Spiller.

Clemons fans looking for a preview of things to come from class of 2010 wide receiver commits Martavis Bryant and DeAndre Hopkins can go watch the duo at Wofford College today in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas.

CUTigers talked with the Scout.com four star prospects after Wednesday morning's practice.

"If you ask me, I feel like I'm the best receiver out here," Hopkins said. "I've been working hard. I haven't dropped any balls yet…I strive to be the best."

Bryant, a competitor in his own right, thinks otherwise.

"No, I don't think (Hopkins) is the best. I think I am. But he is one of the best at the Shrine Bowl," Bryant said.

The friendly competition is still relatively new. Both knew of each other through battling on the gridiron and by making recruiting visits to Death Valley, but they had never really spoken.

"It's pretty good (getting to bond with him)," Bryant said. "I might as well get used to him. I'm going to be with him the next four years."

The way it's shaping up at practice this week, Bryant and Hopkins will be starting and playing in a number of the same packages for the South Carolina Shrine Bowl team on Saturday. When looking ahead to next season at Clemson, Hopkins believes they could make an early splash.

"The coaches talk to us about Jacoby leaving and next year we'll be able to get the ball," he said. "I think we'll be able to impact the team a lot from out position."

They're also teaming up in the recruitment of Beaufort HS linebacker Justin Parker.

"I've been talking to Justin this whole week," Hopkins said. "I think we'll get him by the end of this week. I think we'll have him."

"I tell him he should come to Clemson. I think we have a chance at getting him," Bryant said.

Of course, there are the South Carolina commits pulling Parker on the other end. Bryant said guys like Greenwood HS defensive lineman Kelcy Quarles have been talking trash about South Carolina's win over Clemson in November.

There's also John Fulton, a South Carolina prospect who's had a week-long trash talk session with Bryant.

"We both tell each other, ‘You suck,'" Bryant said.

For the next couple of days, Bryant and Hopkins will be teammates with several Gamecock commits: Boiling Springs quarterback Dylan Thompson, Calhoun County outside linebacker Brandon Golson and Quarles.

"I think we're going to win. We're going to win by at least two touchdowns," Bryant said.

"It's been fun this weekend, being able to give back to the kids and hang out with some of these guys."

CUTigers.com Top Stories