How honesty earned Clemson a commitment from Greenville tight end Josh Sapp

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Josh Sapp knew the call was coming.

Oscar Delp, who was Clemson’s No. 1 target at tight end for the 2022 recruiting class, committed to Georgia on Oct. 13. When Sapp visited Clemson for the Boston College game, Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney was honest and told him that he’d get an offer if Delp went somewhere else.

“I really appreciate it a lot,” Sapp said of Swinney’s transparency. “Honesty is the best, and I feel like that’s why we have such a great relationship now, me and (offensive coordinator and tight ends coach Tony) Elliott. That’s really why I love the program. They’re honest and straight up.”

Once Delp chose the Bulldogs, Sapp knew what was coming next. The day after Delp’s announcement, Swinney made the call to offer Sapp a scholarship. On Tuesday, five days later, Sapp announced his commitment to Clemson and joined Greenville High teammate and offensive lineman Collin Sadler as future Tigers.

Clemson’s recruiting class is now No. 1 in the ACC and 10th in the country following the pledge from the three-star recruit.

Sapp already had a relationship with Elliott through his father, Patrick Sapp, who played for the Tigers (1992-95) a few years prior to Elliott’s arrival as a player in 1999. The elder Sapp went to Clemson as a quarterback before switching over to linebacker. Patrick was taken in the second round of the 1996 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers and played for the Arizona Cardinals for two years in 1998 and 1999.

The relationship between Patrick and Elliott spilled over into Elliott getting to know Josh on a personal level. Once the younger Sapp was of age and went to Dabo Swinney’s football camp this summer, the relationship became more football related.

“We just connected after the camp and have been talking ever since,” Sapp said. “So, just checking up on each other after games. He kind of coached me up on my game a little bit. Just a great relationship.”

As much as Patrick loves that his son is attending his alma mater, Josh will be carving his own path as a tight end, choosing Clemson over Appalachian State and Georgia State. Being less than an hour away from Memorial Stadium, he’s watched more games than he can count.

It wasn’t until the 6-foot-2, 230-pound tight end experienced the Tigers’ season opener against Georgia on a visit, though, that he got an even deeper appreciation for the program that he called his dream school.

“Just being there as a recruit, it gave me a different side of it and gave me a different way of looking at things,” he said.

Sapp has also been in contact with redshirt tight end Sage Ennis, who encourages him to keep working and enjoy his final year of high school football. So far, the Greenville Raider has 25 receptions for 464 yards and four touchdowns to help the squad to a 6-1 season, per Maxpreps, and looks forward to taking his game to the next level in at Clemson.

“I definitely love the way coach Elliott uses tight ends,” he said. “It’s something I think I can bring my talents to, and I’ll fit great in. I know I’ll succeed going here.”

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