Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney held his weekly teleconference Sunday to review the win over South Carolina State, update injuries and look ahead to Georgia Tech. A transcript of the teleconference follows:
We have a quick turnaround here so we will move on pretty quick from this one. It was really a fun game for our guys, fun to watch. The goal for our team was to try to put a complete game together. We definitely did that. The best part of the game was we played so many people and we got a lot of guys some very good quality experience. And then they continued to play pretty well. It is hard to get a shutout. It’s not just the defense. It is the offense taking care of the ball, special teams creating field position. In modern day football that is a hard thing to do.
Defensively I think we only gave up one run of 12 yards or more and one pass of 16 plus so it was a very, very dominant performance. We had two turnovers, the interception and then the fumble in the endzone. We had six sacks and seven three and outs. We dominated third down and had four pass breakups. It was just a good game all across the board defensively.
Offensively we picked up where we left off in the fourth quarter of the Troy game. That was one thing I was wanting to see. We had three straight drives of touchdown, touchdown, field goal to finish up the Troy game and we picked up and scored the most points ever in a quarter. I am really pleased with how our guys played and started the game and the balance we had in the game. We were really able to establish the run game with the 5.3 a carry. Deshaun was 80 percent and had a really good day. Overall we played five quarterbacks and we were 27-35 so we really caught the ball like we are capable of. We only had one punt in the game, no sacks and no turnovers. We were 100 percent in the redzone and very good on third downs.
On special teams it was great to see Denzel get rewarded for his effort as far as covering through the goal line and to get down there and get that touchdown. They averaged 12 yards a return on kickoff returns. Our coverage team three games in a row I am very pleased. The same thing with our punt return game. And Huegel with his kickoffs has been really good.
So a lot of good things in the game and a lot of things on tape that we can coach off of and see if we can continue to improve.
Players of the Game
Offense – Deshaun Watson
Special Teams – Denzel Johnson and Ray Ray McCloud
Defense – Everybody that had a winning grade
We came out of it with two guys. Adrian Dunn did tear his ACL and a little bit of his MCL. It is really disappointing for him. What a great return he had, a 30 yard return. He is a guy that has been in our program now four years. I have watched him grow-up here. He is a local kid. He is as competitive and committed a guy as you could ever ask for. I really hate to lose him.
And then Denzel Johnson just tweaked his hamstring. He is kind of day to day. I am not sure yet if he will be ready to go on a short week or not.
That’s it. Everybody else is in pretty good shape.
Question – Will Boulware be full go at practice today?
Yes, he will be ready to roll.
Question – Playing five quarterbacks what did you see out of those five?
I think that was a school record. We have five different quarterbacks complete a pass. I think it was also a school record that we had 15 different guys catch a pass.
It was fun to see all of those guys get an opportunity to go in. They all did some good things and obviously Deshaun was player of the game. I thought Nick really did a nice job of executing. Kelly got some good extensive time as well. He threw a touchdown pass. He is a young player that hasn’t played a whole lot. When you get a chance to put him in the game it really helps him with that learning curve. Seeing himself of tape and being able to coach off the live will help. Practice will only get you so far.
I thought Tucker did a nice job of going in in the fourth quarter. He made a nice throw on the sprint out to Seth Ryan. We got Barnes in there as well at the end so it was fun for those guys to get some good experience.
Question – Will any of those quarterbacks help you with the option you will face Thursday night?
Typically Brent likes to be the quarterback and he likes to control the tempo. I’m not sure how much that helps us but he knows exactly what he wants over there. Zerrick Cooper will be out quarterback as far as the scout team goes. He will be the guy but usually at the beginning of the week Brent likes to kind of teach the scout quarterback as he’s installing our defense.
Question – With this halftime thing, who came up with the idea of just playing one last quarter?
We played two quarters. We played the third and fourth quarters, they just made them 12 minute quarters instead of 15.
Question – Will Austin Bryant still miss the Georgia Tech game?
Yes, Austin will not play this week.
Question – With a short week how important was it to get some guys some rest after the first quarter or two and what will you schedule be this week?
It just worked out that way. You never really know when you get in the game. But I think it is great that Christian Wilkins only played 12 plays and Carlos Watkins only played 12 plays. That part of it is good that we got through the game relatively healthy. I think it is a definite plus but the same for Georgia Tech. I don’t think they played a lot. They dominated their game as well.
As far as the week goes today is a hybrid Monday/Tuesday practice. Tomorrow is a kind of combined Tuesday/Wednesday practice. Tuesday is like a typical Thursday. We will travel on Wednesday.