On Tuesday evening Clemson’s football team took to Jervey Meadows to continue fall camp, but it was certainly not the day head coach Dabo Swinney wanted to see. According to Swinney the defense did well but the offense really struggled to make it through the tough conditions.
Here is what we heard after Tuesday’s practice:
“I thought this was one of those days where the offense gave in,” Swinney said. “The defense really pushed the offense around a little bit and I did not see the mental toughness that I needed to see offensively. Really just took enough of it, spurts here and there but nowhere near the consistent mental toughness. I thought they gave into it today.
“It was a pretty good finish, we did some competitive two-minute situations, a couple of different situations — touchdown to win it, field goal to win it, and I did feel that we finished better, but it just took a while for the offense to really get their mind where it needed to be. Flip side of it, I thought the defense competed and pushed through all day.”
Swinney even went far enough to say that it was the worst day of camp they have had so far, especially for the wide receivers and the tight ends.
“You need days like this where you create some adversity,” he said. “I thought that there was some adversity today and that’s something we will always evaluate too and how those guys respond to that because it wasn’t a perfect day. There were a ton of dropped balls. It was the worst day we’ve had. Our receivers and our tight ends took the day off and it just kind of went downhill from there. Nobody really picked up the slack so that was disappointing.”
Although Swinney was overall disappointed with Tuesday’s practice, he was pleased with all of the quarterbacks, and also made it clear that as of right now Kelly Bryant will be the starter.
“I didn’t see any quarterbacks not compete or go through the motions,” Swinney said. “They competed hard… Kelly is the starter if we played today. Somebody’s got to go out there, and he’s been the most consistent. He’s graded the best. You can’t anoint people … he’s earned it, so you get what you earn around here.”
Wide receiver Diondre Overton is another one who has excelled during camp. Sharing similar characteristics with former Clemson wide receiver Mike Williams, co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach, Jeff Scott, challenged Overton this spring to be more like Williams. So that’s exactly what Overton is working towards and he feels he is ready to step up and take on that role.
“I knew it was going to take a little bit of time,” said Overton. “That’s nothing to somebody who it willing to work. It took a little time but now it’s my time to shine.”
Offensive tackle Tremayne Anchrum said camp can get difficult especially during this stretch of it but he feels that it has helped him grow and mature mentally.
“Just mentality, camp is a tough thing; it’s day after day,” he said. “Sometimes you can lose site of the end of the tunnel. So really I just kind of grow mentally. You have to take it day by day, give it your all and just take it in strides. You just grow as you go along.”
Anchrum also said practicing on Jervey Meadows instead of at the facility has a different feel to it and really allows them all to get “back to the roots of football.”
“It takes you back. It takes you back to the roots of football,” said the sophomore. “When you were a kid and had jamborees and fall camps, just middle school and high school, it takes you back to the roots of football so we can get away from all of the glamour. That’s awesome over there (the facility) but this just gets back to the basics, back to just the grind of it.”
–Photo Credit: David Wallace/azcentral sports via USA TODAY NETWORK
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