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January 17, 2011

Five-star visitor

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Five-star running back Mike Bellamy took his official visit to Clemson this past weekend.

"I drove the whole way up with my grandma," Bellamy told Tigerillustrated.com Sunday night. "It took me like 10 hours. I love it up there. That's the first time I've ever seen snow. I loved that. I was running through it and playing in it. I feel like that's my town already. I enjoyed everything there. I love the players and wanted to stay there to be honest. I'm going to run that town."

What stood out for the No. 1 running back out of Florida? On a scale of 1-10, what did he rate the visit?

"My visit was a 10," Bellamy said. "I loved it. That's where I'm going to be at for the next four years. Just meeting the team, getting to know one another and hanging out. I talked with Tony McNeal a lot. And everyone has their head on straight. We are going to give FSU a run for their money, once Sammy (Watkins), me and the rest of the guys get up there. Coach (Dabo Swinney) is going to have his job for a long time because of us."

The Punta Gorda (FL) Charlotte standout met with Swinney and his wife, Kathleen, on Friday night after dinner.

"I just laugh and giggle and have fun with coach Swinney," Bellamy said. "We know what we got to do. He told me to keep my grades up and make sure I get in. My grades are great right now. I'm not failing anything. I love miss Kat, too. That's my girl."

The nation's No. 2 running back prospect also got to meet new offensive coordinator Chad Morris and new running backs coach Tony Elliott.

"I love both of them," Bellamy said. "They are fun and I was chilling with them. We didn't talk about the new offense really. We just hung out, laughed and chilled."

Clemson's backfield recently opened up with the early departure of Jamie Harper and the cutting of ties with four-star running back commit Marlin Lane.

"That just means more time for me," Bellamy said. "I got to talk to Andre Ellington this weekend. We enjoyed that. I didn't know his nickname was 'Lil Bit.' I'm going to have to figure out a name for me. Maybe 'lil speedy.' We play Auburn in the fourth game so they should still be No. 1. Andre broke his foot so hopefully he comes back strong and we can carry the team because we are going to be like brothers."

The No. 5 recruit in the state of Florida gave rave reviews for his weekend spent in Tiger Town.

"It was just a great time," Bellamy said. "Just the time I had there. I think coach Swinney and the new offensive coordinator are coming down next Tuesday."

The running back had taken an official visit to Tennessee this past fall. Volunteer quarterbacks coach Darin Hinshaw, his recruiter of record for the Vols, graduated from Punta Gorda (FL) Charlotte.

"I haven't talked to him since I visited there," Bellamy said. "That's done with now."

What's his commit status now?

"I'm 1,000-percent with Clemson," Bellamy said.

The nation's No. 14 overall recruit also has already experienced the passion of the Clemson fan base. It's something he hopes to be a part of more in the near future ... literally.

"I'm trying to figure something out," Bellamy said. "I want to make a Web page or get a Web cam where I can talk to them once a day and keep the Clemson fans updated on what I'm doing. That's something I'm trying to figure out."

As a senior, Bellamy rushed 238 times for 2,407 yards with 41 touchdowns, he had two receptions for 23 yards, three punt returns for 84 yards, and seven kickoff returns for 73 yards in 11 games

As a junior, he rushed for 2,153 yards on 219 carries, a 9.9 yards per rush average.

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