Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney held his Sunday teleconference to review the win over Syracuse, update injuries and look ahead to Pitt. A transcript follows:
Obviously it was a great performance by out team. It was a fun tape to study and grade. I am just very proud of our staff and our team for getting themselves ready to go.
It is definitely fun to win but it is pretty special when you can play a clean game like that and really dominate. A shutout, 50 plus points, no turnovers, only 3 penalties, score on defense. It was just a really dominant performance and praise goes to our guys for getting themselves ready, tremendous preparation and intensity all week long. I just loved the look in their eye all week long as we got ready to play this ballgame. I am really proud for how they played for four quarters.
Defensively we really shutout a very tough offense. This is an offense that was playing with some confidence. They were coming off a couple of weeks to get ready for us, off two big wins. The turnovers were huge. Ryan Carter really sparked us early. They say any time you can score on defense it is big. We played much better with our technique on the back end especially knowing these guys were going to come in and throw it 40 or 50 times. We played a ton of people and I am just really proud of all the guys that played. We were able to maintain the shutout and very few big plays. They had one kind of comeback on the sideline. Only seven yards per completion so again just a dominant day.
Offensively definitely one of the best games we have had. It was a tremendous half for Deshaun. Offensively we had four 80 plus yard drives. We had some big drives. 550 yards and 54 points. Some good balance as far as being able to run the ball and throw the ball. No turnovers was the key. That was the most explosive plays. I think we have 15. The most we have had all year. We averaged almost 14 yards per completion. We threw the ball down the field very well. We missed one but did a great job with the others. First down was good, fourth down was good. Redzone was all touchdowns but one time but we did score 100 percent. And then no sacks. Probably the bigget thing offensively is I think Mike had a couple of drops but he had some great catches as well. But it was just a clean game. I am just really proud of everybody.
They had the number one punt return team coming in and we really held them down there. We didn’t punt a lot but when we did we did a good job of not having any returns.
It was a fun game to watch. The energy was awesome. Our crowd was great.
We are excited about having another week. A big, big week. There is a lot going on this week with our senior day and trying to get a tenth win and trying to win the division. We will continue to do what we do and get these guys in here. We do have fall break tomorrow and Tuesday so I am really excited about that. Our guys get a little extra rest. We will have a little extra times for meetings and stuff like that and get ready for a tough Pitt team.
Players of the Game
Offense – Nick Schuessler
Defense – Everybody that played at least ten snaps and graded a winner
Special Teams – Tanner Muse
Deshaun obviously got banged up. He looked good today. We will get him some treatment today and tomorrow. Then we will get him back in practice the early part of the week.
Cornell was probably he main guy. I was really disappointed for Cornell because it was going to be a big day for him with us holding Ray Ray. He tweaked his ham so we will know more tomorrow on him as far as what we are looking at there.
Then Denzel (Johnson) the same thing. He would have had a lot of opportunity and he tweaked his groin so that limited him.
Chad Smith kind of got banged u a little bit but finished the game. Other than that everybody should be ready to go.
We will get Ray Ray back. Hopefully get him back going this weekend. The same thing with Marcus (Edmond). We were able to hold Marcus. We could have played him if we needed to but we were able to hold him and get that toe back. Again the best thing too in a game like that is when you play a lot of guys to see them continue to play well.
Question – What was your evaluation of how Sean Pollard played at right tackle and also Anchrum?
Both of those guys played a good bit. The biggest thing is it was just a great experience for them. They combined together. They kind of got the job done together. They are young guys that are still improving but you are talking about two freshmen right here. All of a sudden, they have played, but I think Anchrum played both sides and played 34 plays. Pollard played 57 and they did a good job. There are a few things that we can certainly coach from on tape but a great experience that will pay dividends for their development.
Question – Will Deshaun have an MRI or anything to look at the shoulder and also what is the latest on Fruhmorgen?
No, I think they have already checked everything on Deshaun and all that stuff. It is just a matter of him getting back in there and rolling. He was ready to go the second half but fortunately we were able to hold him there. But he looked good today.
As far as Fruhmorgen the same thing with him. We will get with him again tomorrow. We are not in full pads tomorrow. So really Tuesday is when we get back to full pads and we will kind of see where we are.
Question – You gave up your two longest kick returns of the season. Was there anything you saw on film of just them making good returns?
We had ten kicks and seven of them were tackles for loss. What we call tackles for loss inside the 25. So we did a good job here but we had two of them that we were really disappointed in. We had two guys miss a tackle. We were in good position there and didn’t do a good job to the field side. We broke down too early. We have to take the air out of it a little bit more. We need to have a little bit better waggle outside and get by that first guy before we start to balance. But nothing major. Things we can definitely clean up. It will give us a good opportunity to coache a couple of things off tape. Again we played a lot of guys on kickoff coverage yesterday too. We have done an outstanding job all year and guys have taken a lot of pride in that. This again will give us a couple of things that we can teach off of. But again with all of the people we played we had some good things. Muse was our special teams player of the game. He had three big tackles. Trevon I thought got in there and got some really good reps and did a good job. Denzel got banged up so we had to pull him out.
Question – With three of your games being nail biters do you feel like you needed a blowout like this?
No, we just needed a win. We just needed to get to 9-0. That is really all we need every week. Whether we win by one or win by 30 we just want to win. It was nice to be able to play so many guys. Any time you can get that amount of guys that kind of experience that bodes well for your team. We just wanted to play well and we did. We played well in all phases.