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COLUMBIA, S.C. — Former Clemson TE Stephon Wynn Sr. is impressed with the way South Carolina has recruited his namesake.
Stephon Wynn Jr. is a 4-star defensive end from IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) whose other SEC offers include Alabama, Georgia, LSU and Tennessee.
Before transferring to IMG earlier this year, Wynn Jr. attended T.L. Hanna High School in Anderson, S.C., so home is just minutes away from the Clemson campus.
Since emerging on the radar last spring, there hasn’t been an ounce of pressure from his parents to follow in their footsteps to Clemson.
“We want him to talk to us about any questions he may have, but absolutely, it’s totally up to him,” Wynn Sr. said. “Where he chooses to go, that’s his decision. That’s going to be something he has to live with the rest of his life.
“When I came out, my mother gave me the opportunity to choose where I wanted to go. That was my decision, not anything she told me or anything I heard from anybody else. It’s something I wanted to do.”
South Carolina was first to offer Wynn Jr., who has visited about six times since Will Muschamp was named coach in December 2015.
“From a father’s perspective, I’ve learned that Muschamp and his staff, they’re great people. They’ve got something great going on at Carolina,” Wynn Sr. said. “We know that they love the kids and they give them a lot of knowledge about the game.
“And they’re trying to increase the environment. They’re building that new facility that’s going to cost about $55 million, so they can stay up there and get to the top tier where some of the other programs are already at, so we liked that.
“We like everything about Muschamp’s staff. They’re recruiting the hind out of Stephon.”
Life at IMG
Wynn Jr.’s decision to transfer to IMG Academy was announced in January. So far, Wynn Jr. is more than satisfied with the move.
“Everything I could imagine it would be and better,” he said. “It’s probably the best decision I’ve made so far in my life. I’ve been developed as a student, as a football player, as a man. It’s just, overall, a great decision.”
Wynn Sr. wants his son to make the most of the opportunity.
“We’re embracing the process,” Wynn Sr. said. “That’s something he’s always dreamed of doing. He wanted the opportunity for the chance to be great. He felt, with the coaching staff down there, the facilities and what they had to offer, that was the best place for him.”
He added, “They’ve got the best of the best, all the way across the board. They’ve got all the coaches that actually played in the NFL at one time or another, so they’ve got so much experience they can give back to the kids, so that’s what makes them great.
“They’ve got great talent down there. Iron sharpens iron, so every day in practice, you’re going against the best money can buy, so that’s a plus.”
Wynn Jr. is on track to graduate from IMG in December, so he can enroll as a mid-year signee. With that in mind, he’s looking to make a commitment before the start of his senior season.
South Carolina, along with Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Tennessee and Ohio State are among the schools still in the mix for Wynn Jr., who’s listed by the 247Sports composite as the No. 99 overall prospect in the Class of 2018.
“I’m still looking at schools, some are more than others,” Wynn Jr. said.
Sometime after the first of next month, he’ll visit Alabama and Georgia. A trip to Ohio State also could be in the works. No concrete plans for a return to South Carolina have been arranged.