Jevon Williams Becomes A Clemson Tiger

Blanche Ely's Jevon Williams is headed to Death Valley.

One of the nation's best hurdlers announced his commitment to Clemson University on Wednesday morning in front of friends and family.

Williams, No. 20 on MileSplit Class of 2020 Rankings, remained undefeated last season in the 300-meter hurdles and is the US No. 1 returner with his state title effort of 36.54.

"Once a tiger, always a tiger, but now I'm going to be a Clemson Tiger," Williams said. "It was a headache trying to figure out which school to pick... Clemson just had this home type of feeling."

Since Williams took his official visit in November, he could see himself in orange and purple.

"The first day I saw everyone run in my event, I could see myself running on that track," the hurdler said. "The team was very outspoken, and we had chemistry. They spoke to me like they knew me, and they treated me like their teammate."

The interest head coach, Mark Elliott and assistant coach, Lennox Graham showed the senior played a significant part in his choice. Williams had the advantage of being slightly familiar with the coaches after meeting them at the AAU Junior Olympics.

It was this connection that drove him to take the visit.

"Coach Elliott and Coach Graham, they both talked to me like they knew me, like I'm family," he said. "They really showed trust in me. They showed that they wanted me [more] compared to other schools. It was almost like they were more interested in me, than I was in them. That made it feel like home even more."

Coach Graham is in his third season over hurdles and long sprints for the Tigers. In his previous position with Johnson C. Smith University, his athletes combined for 18, top-10 program times between his first two seasons.

What further set Clemson apart from other schools actively recruiting? Their ability to map out Williams' future experience.

The hurdler said that he didn't have to ask any questions because Coach Graham explained everything detail by detail, including his next steps in the hurdles.

"I believe I'm going to be doing short and long hurdles," Williams said. "I'm going to be trying out the short because you know it gets higher as I get in college. But, as far as long hurdles he sees potential in me; he sees me being a future Olympian in that event. He'll also have me on some relays, and he'd love to see me do more sprint work."

Growing up in football, Williams never set out to be a hurdler. 

"I started running freshman year, but I really didn't start my hurdles until halfway into that season," he said. "I wasn't a hurdler at all. I'd seen people doing it and thought it looked easy, so I did it just to play around with it. My coach saw that I was good at it and he said I had to stay in it."

Coach Graham made a point to recognize Williams' potential. He told the hurdler if he stopped splitting his time with football and fully committed to track, that he could be greater than he is.

With only two years of track under his belt, he's won three state championships. He capped off his junior year with ninth place finish at New Balance Nationals Outdoor in the 400mh and ran a new personal best of 52.68 at the Junior Olympics for US No. 18.

The milestones Williams has accomplished in such a short amount of time doesn't surprise him at all. In fact, he's ready to push himself to a place he's never been.

"I have confidence in myself," Williams said. "I know I can do it and I know what type of person I am. But I just want to see what else I'm capable of, where else and how far I'm capable of going."

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