Back Clemson’s Anchrum Ready for More

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Clemson’s Anchrum Ready for More

By BJ Bennett
SouthernPigskin.com
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Entering a period of intense scouting, Tremayne Anchrum has long been self-evaluating.

"I want to learn football all over again. I want to start from the basics and really learn, so, no matter where I am, I have an understanding of the game and the concepts so I can satisfy any need that a team may have."
~Tremayne Anchrum

Clemson's Tremayne Anchrum is a talented offensive line prospect for the 2020 NFL Draft. His resume includes much more than just measurables. What follows Anchrum to the next level is an accomplished, almost-unparalleled, paradigm of production. His career with the Tigers included 37 starts, four trips to the College Football Playoff, four ACC championships, two all-conference seasons and, above all else, two national titles. Anchrum was an anchor for Clemson, who went 55-4 in his four years. That prominence is part of his profile.

Anchrum is an athletic, strong blocker at 6'2'', 315 pounds, a powerful and punishing tactician in the trenches. Beyond those abilities, his legacy is one of leadership. A tone-setter for the Tigers, Anchrum will now look to do the same at the next-level. One of just 23 players in Clemson history to play 2,500 snaps, his consistency comes with an upside all its own. Anchrum, with a relentless work ethic and an unwavering personal and team standard, has meaningful talents both on the field and off.

All that Anchrum accomplished and learned at Clemson has him confident and comfortable going through the pre-draft process. Fresh off a run for the ages, Anchrum believes he is now ready for his next step.

"It prepared me immensely," he explained. "Clemson prides itself on non-complacency, getting better everyday, little things, and one of Coach Swinney's core concepts is 'iron sharpens iron'. With no shortage of great defensive and offensive linemen, we battled everyday. We pushed each other in the weight room, in conditioning, off the field. That was great in setting me up and giving me an advantage at the next level. I'm so grateful for all of the things Coach Swinney did to help us get better."

Quite notably, Anchrum has benefited from daily competition against some of the most accomplished defensive linemen in all of college football the last few years: his teammates. The Tigers, the last four seasons, have ranked second, first, sixth and first in the country in tackles for loss. Clelin Ferrell, Christian Wilkins and Dexter Lawrence were all three first round picks last year alone. Anchrum has honed his skills against star players who have already made major impacts in the NFL.

"It made gameday really easy. It's a breeze when you practice against a first rounder, a couple of first rounders, every day in practice," Anchrum added. "Inside, pass, one-on-one, that just helped me perfect my craft. Anything I could do to help them get a good look for their gamedays. It only made us better as a team. We really took pride in individual development, elevating that helped elevate the team as well."

Whichever professional team signs Anchrum will get a great talent and, as importantly, a player who knows what it takes to become one.

There is a nuance to Anchrum's game, a very real feel for the moment. It is a distinction that has been earned in the details. That mindset helped him get his first college start as a true freshman, play in all 14 games as a sophomore and emerge as a leader for Clemson teams that went a combined 29-1 over his two upperclassmen seasons. Anchrum plays with great leverage, technique and tenacity, but also, as Swinney has long required, the subtleties that often go overlooked.

That process continues. Entering a period of intense scouting, Anchrum has long been self-evaluating.

"I'm working on my skill development in multiple areas. I want to be a diverse offensive lineman. I want to be able to play multiple positions, come in, plug and play," Anchrum acknowledged. "I want to learn football all over again. I want to start from the basics and really learn, so, no matter where I am, I have an understanding of the game and the concepts so I can satisfy any need that a team may have."

A standout tackle at Clemson, Anchrum definitely has the ability to line up at a couple of different spots; though a proven option off the edge, his versatility comes with great value. Anchrum has the potential to play both inside-or-out, a functionality that adds an important variable to his overall grade. Regardless of where he lines up along the offensive front, Anchrum is committed to his craft and, ultimately, getting on the field.

In an era of professional football where being multi-faceted is quite meaningful, Anchrum is, in some ways, the modern prototype.

"I feel like I could play any position at a high level," Anchrum nodded. "I've played tackle at the highest level against some of the best competition in the biggest games. But I also am able to play other positions. I have the ability to learn and improve and develop whatever I set my mind to. I'm still working at tackle, it's one of my best positions, but obviously I want to be able to show my diversity across the line."

With a continuation upcoming, Anchrum's journey has helped him grow into the player and person he is. He, in addition to winning at a historic rate at Clemson, strengthened his foundation. That base is one of Anchrum's best attributes. For multiple seasons, the Georgia-native was a star player for the Tigers, an evolution where he both taught and learned alike. Anchrum's rise to national champion included countless lessons along the way. The Clemson experience, for Anchrum, was a quintessential one.

"Here at Clemson, the athletes are top notch, but, at the same time, it's more than that. It's much more about the person and who you are. 'Clemson family' means a lot because it stands for something. It stands for love. It stands for acceptance. It stands for embodying southern hospitality. That is something that Clemson prides itself on," Anchrum shared. "When you get into the Clemson family and you start embodying these ideals, you become a better person. If you become a better person, you become a better football player because of it."

Swinney was one of the reasons Anchrum came to the upstate. Moving forward, Anchrum's head coach also helped prepare him for the next level.

"Coach is just an amazing man of faith. He believes in his players and he believes in his program. He believes in work," Anchrum reflected. "That just spoke to me coming out of high school as a young kid who wasn't real sure where to go and what school to choose. Seeing him and seeing how that translates into all areas of the program was great. My college career was something that people rarely get to do and I'm just grateful for the opportunity."

On the field at Clemson, Anchrum and his peers on the offensive line were the starting point for much of the Tigers' success. Clemson has ranked in the top four in the nation in scoring offense the past two years. Anchrum, understanding the significance that his play, as a blocker, has on the entire team, works hard to maintain a certain status quo. Individually and collectively, offensive linemen are the basis for any unit's identity. Often overlooked by fans and the media, what happens at the line of scrimmage can directly determine what happens everywhere else.

Looking ahead, Anchrum is eager to have that responsibility at the next level. He takes great pride in the position that he plays and the impact he can have on games. Anchrum doesn't just get to play offensive line, he is glad to.

"We always joke around, but, you know, the big uglies are where the wins happen right?" he laughed.

A talented draft prospect prepared by one of college football's power programs, Anchrum is a player set to bring a number of impressive qualities to whichever organization selects him. Just as Anchrum helped make Clemson comprehensively better, he is excited about having the same opportunity with his next team. A look at Anchrum's film tells you a lot, but even in-depth study doesn't, by any stretch, tell you everything. Once more, he is ready to work his way to prominence. 

With the draft approaching, the search is on for players who can do it all; Anchrum, see his credentials, already has.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is SouthernPigskin.com's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: bj@espncoastal.com / Twitter: @BJBennettSports