Chattahoochee All-State kicker Ammon Lakip committed to Clemson over Georgia Tech on Sunday night.
Lakip, whose father graduated from Georgia Tech, made the decision after taking an official visit to Clemson this weekend.
“Clemson felt like home, it was the right place for me,” Lakip said. “My father was real supportive. He wanted it to be my choice, and it was.”
The strong-legged kicker became a hot commodity late during the recruiting process. His first offer was from Georgia Tech in mid-December, followed by Clemson only a couple of weeks ago.
BCS champion Auburn also entered the sweepstakes, making a “grayshirt” offer that would delay Lakip’s college enrollment until January 2012, so his scholarship would count toward next year’s recruiting class.
Lakip nearly considered committing to Clemson earlier in the recruiting process, but held off after talking with Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson. The two talked after Lakip moved up his Clemson visit up to this weekend, rather than go to Georgia Tech as previously scheduled.
Johnson eventually convinced Lakip to take a one-day visit to Georgia Tech last Tuesday.
“I was not going to visit Georgia Tech at all and Coach Johnson got on the phone,” Lakip recalled. “[Johnson] said ‘I’m not going to try to convince you [to keep your original visit date to Georgia Tech] but I think you’re making a rash decision. All I would want would be for you to visit us and see how you like it here. There is no reason for you not to visit us. It won’t hurt you. If Clemson is still your choice after you visit, then it’s still your choice.’”
Lakip said his brief visit to Georgia Tech went well but Clemson sealed his services this weekend. Lakip had a long history with the Tigers, as they also recruited him in soccer. He turned down a partial Clemson soccer scholarship last year, hoping to earn a full ride in football at any school.
Lakip led Chattahoochee to the Class AAAA state championship, kicking two game-winning field goals during the playoffs. He converted 64 of 65 PATs, along with 14 of 20 field goal attempts, including a long of 51 yards. He booted 82-percent of his kickoffs out of the end zone.
– By Michael Carvell, AJC College Recruiting