After taking an extra day past the initial start of the Early Signing Period, four-star cornerback Clark Phillips decided to flip from Ohio State, instead signing on with Utah.
Phillips — who is ranked as the No. 4 cornerback in his class, and No. 47 recruit overall — initially committed to Ohio State on June 21, becoming the 13th member of the Buckeyes’ 2020 recruiting class.
But on the weekend following the announcement that Ohio State co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach Jeff Hafley was leaving to become head coach at Boston College, Phillips took a visit to Utah, officially drawing questions of the corner’s commitment to the Buckeyes.
Phillips ultimately decided to swing his commitment to the Utes, becoming the highest recruit that Utah has for its 2020 class.
Phillips resides from La Habra High School in La Habra, California, where he has 28 tackles, seven pass deflections and four interceptions on the season, according to MaxPreps. He has 13 total interceptions and 32 total pass deflections over his high school career.
Though he is being recruited as a cornerback, Phillips has also had success on the offensive side in high school, bringing home 30 catches for 435 yards and 10 touchdowns this season. He was even more productive as a receiver in his junior year, when Phillips caught 54 passes for 1,210 yards and 19 touchdowns.
At The Opening Finals, Phillips put together a 4.52-second 40-yard dash and 35.70-inch vertical this year, while also holding a 4.06-second shuttle time last year.
Greg Biggins, National Recruiting Analyst at 247Sports, had high praise for the cornerback recruit on his analysis from Nov. 16, 2018.
“Has a strong build and plays with a bulldog mentality. Doesn’t have great length but makes up for it with a physical style of play and advanced technique. More quick than fast but has improved his long speed over the last year and is better able to turn and run with the fastest receivers. His improved burst and explosiveness shows up on the offensive side of the ball at receiver where he showed his ability to out run a defense and be dynamic after the catch,” Biggins wrote in his analysis. “Has excellent ball skills and really improved in his ability to make a play on the ball without interfering. An extremely competitive player who loves the challenge of taking on another team’s best receiver. Is physical in the run game and does a nice job getting off blocks and making a tackle. Scrappy type of play looks conducive to playing as a nickel or slot corner in college.
“Is versatile enough to line up anywhere in the secondary. Projects as an impact, upper-tier Power 5 starter and future high-round NFL draft pick.”
Without Phillips in the 2020 class, Ohio State is left with four-star corner Lejond Cavazos, four-star safety Lathan Ransom, four-star corner Ryan Watts and three-star athlete Cameron Martinez, who is expected to compete for the “Bullet,” a linebacker/safety hybrid position.
|School||La Habra, Calif.|