So you've heard by now that Robert Nkemdiche, the top defensive prospect of 2013 wants Clemson to offer his HS teammate Ryan Carter.
Specifically, he told the AJC: “I am waiting on Clemson to offer Ryan; when that happens, it’s locked … it’s a done deal … it’s over."
It's not like Carter has zero scholarship offers. In addition, Nkemdiche describes the safety as "hard-nosed" and says he has "a high motor." Even if Carter had zero offers, I think you would still have to take him to get Nkemdiche.
Let me give you a couple of examples from another sport (roller hockey-meaning this, and where the heck was the documentary when I had my national team tryout, USA Hockey?) about going all-in.
In a U-17 league, I ended up having to draft the team for my dad, who was the coach but away on business. I'm in a room with coaches in their 40s and 50s and I have the first pick because our team was brand new. I went after the highest rated defenseman (who also provided some offense, like Nkemdiche playing in the offensive backfield in the above video) despite him being a package deal with the lowest rated player available in the whole league. We were in a much worse position than Clemson to make this play as each team only had 10-12 players. The other coaches kind of shook their heads, because we had already used up three slots and hadn't chosen our one goalie. I basically gave up the rest of our draft to get the best goalie and the riskiest player (rink owner's son, mom wanted him to focus on school) who was a scoring machine.
Result: We finished second during the regular season and won the league championship. We could only talk the risky player's mom into letting her son play 40% of our games but he had nearly five points per game when he did play. The package deal? The player everybody wanted was great. His cousin nobody thought could skate had two game-winning goals. Take some risks, it might work out.
Or, it might not.
The next season my dad didn't have time to coach and I was drafted as a package deal with my high school coach's son (who was a lot more like Carter than the player in the previous example) on a brand new team. His dad tried to double down like my team had done the season before. He got the best player in the state who played one game and then quit the team. Our team really missed on the goalie selection and didn't win a game. In one of the games I blocked 15 shots and scored two goals...we lost 8-2.
Clemson has to go for this deal. They aren't risking nearly as much as the hockey teams above did which were starting from scratch. We're not even talking about going for a risky third player who might not play much in Clemson's situation. However, the Tigers do need to take a chance on improving a defense which allowed about a yard more per play than any Clemson defense in the last five years in 2011.