Tristan Leigh: Consistency is Key to Earning Clemson’s LT Job

Tristan Leigh has patiently waited for the opportunity that’s been given to him this spring. 

The Clemson offensive lineman showed up as one of the prized recruits in the 2021 recruiting class, but the Fairfax, Va., native has only played 70 snaps in seven games the last two seasons. 

With former left tackle Jordan McFadden off to the NFL, the Tigers are looking at Leigh to solidify one of the most important positions on the field as the new starting left tackle. 

“I’m trying to come out and be great every single day,” Leigh said. “I feel like if I can do that, everything else will take care of itself.”

Clemson needs it to work out quickly. The Tigers are looking for the best five. If the 6-foot-6, 315-pound Leigh can’t be that, OL coach Thomas Austin will have to get creative. 

But Leigh is getting reps with the first team at spring practice. He had to reshape his body after he arrived on campus. Because of COVID-19 in 2020, he was a whole year behind in terms of development. Last year, he only played sparingly, but Leigh said it was huge advantage to be learning from McFadden, who gave him an example of how being consistent will get you far at this position. 

“That’s what I’m striving to do,” Leigh said. “Sometimes my effort is great and I’m fast off the ball but I false start. Or vice versa, take the right footwork, but not explosive enough. I feel like putting it all together is what I have to do.”

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