Just four games into the season and Clemson has taken some big hits with injuries at cornerback.
Marcus Edmond sprained his foot early into the Auburn game and has yet to return. Trayvon Mullen was under concussion protocol this week after suffering a concussion in last week’s victory over Boston College. Mark Fields left last week’s game against the Eagles with a glute injury injury but is expected to play in Saturday’s game against No. 12 Virginia Tech.
If none of them can go in Blacksburg, Va., on Saturday, then that’s when K’Von Wallace comes into the picture. The sophomore moved pack to cornerback earlier this week to help provide depth in case Mullen and Fields were not able to make it back.
Wallace already filled Van Smith’s void at safety in the Auburn game after Smith injured his knee against Kent State.
The Richmond, Va., native has seen action in all four games so far this season, as well as his start against Auburn. He has tallied eight tackles and has one pass break up.
So far, Virginia Tech quarterback Josh Jackson and wide receiver Cam Phillips have dominated every secondary they’ve faced. Phillips has 34 catches for 523 receiving yards and five touchdowns in four games. He also leads the nation in receiving yards.
On top of that, Virginia Tech is averaging 289 passing yards per game. But, the Tigers rank third nationally in total defense, allowing just 227 total yards per game, while the secondary ranks ninth in pass defense, yielding just 134.5 yards per outing.
Despite a banged up secondary, Wallace is confident going against his own receivers in practice has prepared him to face anyone.
“It’s not going to be as big of a challenge as going against the receivers here,” Wallace said. “I think it’s going to be another game.”
But it’s not just another game for Wallace. He will be heading back to his home state for the first time since he came to Clemson last year, where he’ll look up to see some special faces cheering him on in the crowd at Lane Stadium.
“A lot of family members get to come see me play for the first time,” Wallace said. “Going back to Virginia, never played in Virginia since I’ve been here, so going back to Virginia and playing the game in front of a whole bunch of family members is definitely special.”