Djitte is going to surprise some people

Mar 9, 2016; Washington, DC, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets guard Marcus Georges-Hunt (3) shoots the ball as Clemson Tigers forward Jaron Blossomgame (5) and Tigers center Sidy Djitte (50) defend in the second half during day two of the ACC conference tournament at Verizon Center. The Yellow Jackets won 88-85 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, Clemson University unveiled its new Littlejohn Coliseum and Swann Pavilion. On Nov. 11, it will unveil its new post players.

With Landry Nnoko moving on to the pro ranks after playing the last four years for the Tigers, Clemson will have a couple of new players, sort of, in the paint when they tip off the 2016-’17 season against Georgia.

Legend Robertin isn’t new, exactly, but he played sparingly in the Tigers’ 17-14 season last year. It does not seem like Elijah Thomas is new, but he sat out last season after transferring to Clemson from Texas A&M. Though, Sidy Djitte has played a lot the last two seasons, this is the first year where he is the full-time starter at center.

“The guys are bringing in a lot of energy,” Clemson assistant coach Mike Winiecki said to The Clemson Insider. “We have a veteran group so that is making things a little easier for them. We had a great scrimmage on Friday before we had the ribbon cutting ceremony. The guys really got after it. Compared to last year, we are a little bit ahead of what we are working for.”

Winiecki says practice is going well as the coaches continue to add things every week.

As for Djitte, Winiecki has been pleased with his senior leader.

“Sidy has been great, especially with his leadership. Obviously, he had to wait his turn and bide his time the first three years playing behind Landry. This is his year to shine,” the Clemson coach said. “I think he will have a great senior year. He has worked hard on his leadership skills. He knows what we want to do and he is bringing it to the younger guys like Legend, and Eli. He is bringing with them to our practices and individual workouts.”

Last year, Djitte averaged 5.5 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. However, he could have done more if he was able to stay on the floor longer.

“Obviously he is a great rebounder and he goes after every loose ball, but he has to limit some fouling so hopefully he gets to 25 to 28 minutes this year,” Winiecki said. “That’s what we penciled in for him so he has to keep out of foul trouble.

“He has extended his game and he is handling the ball a little bit in our set offenses and making some good passes, especially in our first scrimmage so he is going to surprise a lot of people.”


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