The Clemson Tigers have the opportunity to finish the 2013 recruiting cycle on an extremely high note, as they are firmly in the running for both 5-star defensive end Carl Lawson and 5-star defensive tackle Montravius Adams.
The only problem is, they aren't the only program with a chance to come away with the final commitment of either recruit.
Lawson is still committed to Auburn, even though that commitment has been wavering for a while now, and Adams has Georgia, Alabama, Florida and Auburn in his unofficial top five (247Sports) along with Clemson.
That said, both elite recruits took visits to Clemson this past weekend and according to Lawson via Kipp Adams of ESPN.com, they had a good time:
“It was fun hanging out with Montravius and we talked,” Lawson said. “I could tell he was enjoying himself.
Landing the commitment of just one of these elite recruits would be huge for Clemson, but what are the odds that Clemson can finish the 2013 cycle with both Adams and Lawson committed to the program? Frankly, that could be asking a lot for the Tigers, but then again, it's not an impossible goal.
I'd say the odds are decent that Clemson can pull off this epic feat to end the 2013 recruiting cycle.
"[Coach] Dabo Swinney, [defensive ends coach] Marion Hobby and [defensive coordinator] Brent Venables tried to pitch me on it being the best fit for me at Clemson and just using me as a pass-rusher in their 4-3 scheme,” Lawson said.
Both players would fit well in Clemson's system and we know that the Tigers can draw elite recruits. There's no doubting the fact that Swinney is one of the better recruiters in college football.
How will Clemson have to approach this?
Their best pitch would be to sell each recruit on the chance to play on the defensive line next to the other. As an elite defensive end, having a defensive tackle on the interior that can shoot the gap, control the line and force the ball to the edges would be extremely beneficial for Lawson. Conversely, having an elite pass-rusher on the outside would funnel the ball back into the pocket and allow Adams to make a ton of plays.
Auburn can pitch the same thing to Adams since they already have Lawson's commitment, but if the 5-star defensive end does indeed decommit, look for Clemson to become one of the favorites to land him.
If they can get Lawson, the odds of Clemson landing Adams as well would grow exponentially.
Adams and Lawson could form an elite tandem for Clemson and they'd both be major stars for the Tigers on defense. Landing their commitments would also more than make up for losing Robert Nkemdiche's, which would instantly make both of them fan favorites.
The state of Clemson recruiting took a very disappointing turn earlier in this cycle when the Tigers lost Nkemdiche's commitment, but they can make up for that and more by landing two of the most talented defensive recruits in this class.
The odds aren't necessarily in the Tigers' favor, but then again, they aren't necessarily against them either.