Standout Kicker on the Recruiting Trail

Clay Baldwin is a standout kicker from Greenwood High in South Carolina. Recent media reports suggested that Clay had interest in several well know football programs. Scout.com reached his school and spoke with Coach Shell Dula about Clay's recruiting situation.

Clay Baldwin is a standout kicker from Greenwood High in South Carolina. Recent media reports suggested that Clay had interest in several well know football programs. Scout.com reached his school and spoke with Coach Shell Dula about Clay's recruiting situation.

"What's happened is that Clay has some offers but he wants to major in Engineering," Dula said. "So that, of course, cuts it down just a little bit. Georgia Tech, for example, is very interested. In fact, he's going down there today (Wednesday) to talk with them and maybe come in as a walk-on. I think Georgia Tech's lost a few scholarships… so they've chosen not to recruit a kicker. South Carolina has chosen not to recruit a kicker. They're going to have some tryouts with some walk-ons that are students there. Those are schools he was very interested in but neither one of them are going to sign a kicker so he's looking at the option of both of those for walking on. He seemed to be the first choice at Middle Tennessee and, of course, they made a coaching change. We've talked to Coach Stockstill but they haven't offered him. And Clemson went with a boy from Riverside (Richard Jackson) who's a very good kicker. So, things just haven't worked out and the schools he was really interested in the most have chosen not to recruit a kicker this year."

Coach Dula listed several smaller schools that were interested in Clay and some that had even offered. One in particular could get into the mix more heavily with Clay.

"He's got some offers from some Division I-AA schools," Dula said. "Now Air Force academy has been in contact with him because he's an excellent student and there's a chance something could work out there."

Coach Dula described Clay physically as, "He's about 5'11", 180, good athlete, decently strong, works hard in the weight room."

Baldwin's stats speak to the reason why schools like Georgia Tech and South Carolina have taken a hard look at including them to their rosters.

"Clay kicked off 73 times this past year; 63 of them were touchbacks," Dula said. "He's a heck of a kicker. He punted 31 times; averaged 38.3 yards a punt. Only had 7 punts returned and 10 downed inside the 10 yard line. Field goals he was 9-for-11. His longest this year was 42. He has kicked one 48 his junior year. He was 48 of 54 on extra points."

Each of his two favorites offers a different opportunity for earning a role on those teams.

"He thinks he can go to Georgia Tech and win the job," Dula said. "And of course if he wins the job, they'll put him on scholarship. He's going down there today with his family. He's already been accepted at University of South Carolina… as a student. Then he, along with several other kickers, would have some type of a tryout, as I understand it, near the end of the summer. Then they would choose one or two to walk-on."

Clay's visit to Tech today is not considered an official visit.

"I think it would be more of an unofficial but he is going to have the chance to sit down with some academic people as well as Coach Gailey," Dula said.


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