Clemson’s Hiring of Garrett Riley Draws Positive Reviews From Recruits

Dabo Swinney’s move to bring in Garrett Riley as Clemson’s new offensive coordinator was one of the biggest moves in the country this offseason.

Riley is a disciple of the late Mike Leach and runs his own variation of the Air Raid offense. However, it’s not the pass-happy scheme most fans think of when hearing the term Air Raid. It’s a far more balanced attack and has the potential to be extremely successful with a roster that includes QB Cade Klubnik and RBs Will Shipley and Phil Mafah.

Bringing in Riley has been met with positive reviews from across the country, with that feeling extending into the recruiting world. 

2023 signee Jarvis Green was one of the first of the summer enrollees to actually meet the Tigers’ new offensive coordinator, as the RB was on campus last weekend for an official visit. Green excelled in Dutch Fork’s high-powered offense and was a key component in the team’s run to a state title last season, rushing for more than 2,000 yards and registering more than 500 receiving yards.

“My first impression was great,” Green told All Clemson. “Got to meet him the morning after I arrived to Clemson and it was just great meeting Coach Riley. He is a great coach and an even better person just to talk to. We had a few conversations over the time I was on my official visit and they were all good. I loved talking to him.”

Jay Haynes, the Tigers’ other 2023 signee at RB was admittedly disappointed to hear about the dismissal of Brandon Streeter, but at the same time is very much looking forward to what Riley has in store for the offense.

“Man, I think he’s a great fit for our program, coming off a very successful season,” Haynes said. “I still loved Coach Streeter though. One of the first guys I met.”

After seeing what Riley accomplished at TCU last season, priority 2024 WR target Alex Taylor also thinks he’s a good fit at Clemson. Taylor, who was one of the Tigers’ first WR offers in the 2024 cycle, is expected to be at Elite Junior Day on January 28 and is very much looking forward to meeting Riley. The blue-chip talent already held the Tigers in high regard, and Riley’s hiring doesn’t change his view.

“I don’t know much about Garrett Riley, but I know TCUs offense was super explosive,” Taylor said. “It doesn’t change my view at all. I’m excited to meet him.”

David Eziomume, who is also expected to attend Elite Junior Day, is currently the only 2024 RB with an offer. After watching Riley help lead the Horned Frogs to the national title game, he also sees how the hire might benefit the Tigers in the immediate future.  

“Doesn’t really change my view,” Ezoiomume said. “I feel like it’s a positive addition knowing he came from TCU. What they did this year was great.”

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