Earlier in the week, we at SEC Country began a countdown of the Top 10 LSU football players of 2016. Today, the countdown continues with a player whose contributions are hard to quantify.
Our No. 7 pick isn’t a household name outside of the LSU fanbase, and there’s probably a segment of LSU football fans that can’t tell you much about what this guy does. But for my money, he was the most important offensive player LSU had in 2016, outside of Derrius Guice of course.
But before we get on with the reveal, here’s a recap of the previous entries in the countdown.
No. 10: Davon Godchaux
No. 9: Duke Riley
No. 8: Leonard Fournette
Now, back to your regularly scheduled programming.
No. 7: Offensive guard Will Clapp
One of the three Tigers named to the first-team All-SEC squad, Will Clapp was a dominant force at guard for LSU this season.
The third-year sophomore might be LSU’s smallest offensive lineman, but he fits extremely well in zone schemes, like the ones that made Guice an early contender for the 2017 Heisman Trophy.
According to Pro Football Focus, Clapp graded out as one of the top 20 guards in college football this year. In LSU’s loss to Alabama, after which the offensive line took credit for the loss, Clapp graded out with an overall performance grade of 81.0, the third-best of any offensive player on either LSU or Alabama.
Next season for LSU football
Clapp unceremoniously announced earlier in the week that he will be coming back for his junior year.
There has been speculation that Clapp could bump inside and take over at center for graduating senior Ethan Pocic, but Clapp shot down those rumors, saying all he knows is he’s going to play where the coaches put him.
Still, with Pocic and fellow guard Josh Boutte both departing after the Citrus Bowl, Clapp will have to be the centerpiece of the interior of the LSU football team’s offensive line next year.
And that’s a job he can more than handle.