Losing Clemson brings in stellar class

CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) -- Clemson overcame the school's first losing season in 12 years to sign a group of 29 players coach Dabo Swinney hopes can lead the Tigers back to the Atlantic Coast Conference title game.

Among the signees Wednesday were three standouts from the state of Florida in running back Mike Bellamy, receiver Sammy Watkins and linebacker Tony Steward.

Bellamy and Watkins had long been pledged to Clemson. However, Steward announced his choice this morning, passing on his expected destination of Florida State.

The last time that happened for the Tigers was five years ago when C.J. Spiller of Lake Butler, Fla., shunned the nearby Seminoles and Florida Gators to play for Clemson.

Spiller became the ACC's player of the year in 2009.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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