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Who plays, who red-shirts

Posted by cuorange on August 19, 2009

Purple HeismanIt appears that up to 9 of the 12 players signed last February will red-shirt for the 2009 season.  Jonathan Meeks, Corico Hawkins and Malliciah Goodman will play.
Two players remain in the question mark category:  DL Tyler Shatley and LB Quandon Christian, who both play positions where the Tigers are lacking depth.
My guess is that one or both will end up playing by virtue of the fact that their positions tend to involve a fair amount of injuries.  This is something that doesn’t necessarily have to be determined any time soon and Swinney could intend to red-shirt both and then pull the shirt when and if injuries require.  Of course, using this method could mean that playing time (and thereby experience) could be limited until the shirt is pulled.
The most interesting development to me is the fact that defensive end Malliciah Goodman is going to play this season as a true freshman (enrolled in January) and Kourtnei Brown is going to red-shirt after playing his first two years on campus.  Defensive end is one position (along with quarterback and running back) where the Tigers do not have depth problems.  What this signals to me is that Swinney believes Goodman has the potential to leave for the NFL after three years and does not want to “waste” a year red-shirting him only to lose him after his sophomore year.
Goodman will be part of the DE rotation this year and next year, after Ricky Sapp leaves, Clemson will have Goodman who will be a sophomore, Da’Quan Bowers (Jr.), and Kourtnei Brown (Jr.) at DE. 

2009 Clemson Signees

Name Position 2009 Status
Tajh Boyd Quarterback Red-Shirt
Quandon Christian Linebacker ?
Malliciah Goodman Defensive End Will Play
Corico Hawkins Linebacker Will Play
J.K. Jay Offesnive Line Red-Shirt
Rod McDowell Running Back Red-Shirt
Bryce McNeal Wide Receiver Red-Shirt
Jonathan Meeks Safety Will Play
Tyler Shatley Defensive Line ?
Spencer Shuey Linebacker Red-Shirt
Darrell Smith Tight End/Defensive End Red-Shirt
Brandon Thomas Offensive Line Red-Shirt

On the surface this appears to be a good thing (assuming Goodman does in fact leave after three years or at least has the potential to).  This gives Kourtnei Brown two years post Sapp to make his presence felt with Bowers and Goodman.  It appears to be a win-win for everyone involved and a good decision by Swinney and Brown.


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