California HS Recruit Picks Walk-On Spot At BYU Over Scholarship Offers

Aug 22, 2023, 11:54 PM

BYU Football, Stretch Y Helmet...

A helmet is pictured on the grass after BYU football practice at Brigham Young University in Provo on Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023. (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

(Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

PROVO, Utah – BYU football has a strong history of successful walk-ons.

Tyler Allgeier went from preferred walk-on to the school’s single-season rushing leader and then a 1,000-yard rusher in the NFL. There are also examples of players opting to walk on at BYU over scholarship offers from FBS programs.

Former BYU safety Andrew Rich was an example of that in the early 2010s when he opted to play for the Cougars over an offer from Boise State.

David Clifford from Poway High in California commits to BYU

The latest prospect to pick the walk-on path with the BYU football program over scholarship offers is David Clifford.

Clifford is an offensive line recruit from Poway High School in California. He’s a three-star prospect on 247Sports’ rankings in the 2024 recruiting class.

The 6-foot-4, 275-pound Clifford announced on social media late Tuesday night that he is committing to BYU as a preferred walk-on.

“First, I want to thank my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ for all my blessings,” wrote Clifford on X. “I also want to thank my parents, family, friends, coaches, and teammates. Each of you made me a better person and I will forever be grateful for your dedication and love. I appreciate all the coaches that recruited me, but I know BYU is the right place for me. Thank you Coach Sitake and Coach Funk for the opportunity. Go Cougs!”

Clifford picked BYU football over FBS scholarship offers

Clifford picked BYU’s preferred walk-on option over reported scholarship offers from future Big 12 foe Arizona, Air Force, Army, Colorado State, Nevada, San Diego State, and San Jose State.

The San Diego Union-Tribune ranks Clifford as one of the “25 best” players in San Diego County heading into the 2023 high school football season.

Clifford brought up BYU’s move to the Big 12 to San Diego-based Prep Pigskin Report after committing to the Cougars.

During his prep career, Clifford has played offensive tackle and guard for Poway High.

Clifford has a younger brother, James Clifford, in the class of 2026, a 6-foot-6 tight end/defensive end prospect that also plays for Poway High. He could be one to monitor down the road.

The addition of Clifford is BYU’s first preferred walk-on commit in the 2024 recruiting class. Last year, BYU added 13 PWO prospects from the high school ranks in the 2023 recruiting class.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s coverage of BYU in the Big 12 Conference on Twitter/X and Threads: @Mitch_Harper.

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California HS Recruit Picks Walk-On Spot At BYU Over Scholarship Offers