In each of the last two years, Clemson has finished the season on the minus-side of the turnover margin. During this time, Dabo Swinney has preached that eventually things will turn and the ball will start bouncing the Tigers’ way.
Maybe 2017 is that year.
Though the numbers still are not great, Clemson finds itself on the plus-side of the turnover margin as it heads into Saturday’s game against Wake Forest. The Tigers have forced six turnovers and have given the ball back five other times, equaling to a plus-one margin.
All six turnovers have come in the last three games as Clemson got an interception against Louisville, two interceptions against Boston College and then got two interceptions and one fumble recovery against Virginia Tech last week.
The best part is the Tigers have committed just two turnovers the last three week and both came in the Boston College game.
“It’s like a God send,” Swinney said following Wednesday’s practice. “I told ya’ll that the Turnover Gods will eventually have to turn it around. It just can’t keep going that way. If we can keep that trend anywhere close to that, I will take even. That’s better than being in the deficit of it.”
Clemson (5-0, 3-0 ACC) is not only getting turnovers now, but it is scoring on them as well. Linebacker Dorian O’Daniel took back interceptions against Louisville and Virginia Tech in the Tigers’ two big road wins.
“That is huge. That is like getting two turnovers,” Swinney said. “Hopefully, we can keep that trend going.”
Even if they don’t, and Swinney does not want to tempt fate, the Tigers will still be okay. Since 2014, Clemson is 13-2 when it losses the turnover battle, including a win over Auburn this season.
In five games so far this year, the Tigers have won the turnover battle three times, tied it once and lost it once.
Injury report. Swinney reported defensive end Logan Rudolph has had his surgery on his shoulder and is doing well. The freshman, who is out for the remainder of the season, is now going through his rehabilitation process.
Tight end Garrett Williams, who tore his ACL back in the spring, is working with the scout team and “really looks pretty good,” according to Swinney
Defensive end, Just Foster (ankle) will probably miss the Wake Forest game. Swinney said he is pretty confident the freshman will be back next week, but will not quite be able to go this Saturday.
Edmond out through bye week. Swinney said the goal for cornerback Marcus Edmond (foot) to return will come after the bye week.
“Our goal for Marcus is to really kind of get to the open date and hopefully get him back rolling and cut him loose.”
Greenlee will be back. Swinney said tight end D.J. Greenlee is back at practice. He has practiced all week and is expected to be with the Tigers in Saturday’s game.
Former players returning for homecoming. Swinney said all of his former players are invited to come lead Tiger Walk which will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday.
“I never know who is coming, but I do know that Grady Jarrett is coming,” Swinney said. “He sent me a text today that he will see me this weekend. So I do know he is coming.”
Swinney said former Clemson running back C.J. Spiller was at practice on Wednesday and he hopes he will be at the game on Saturday.
Saturday’s game is scheduled to kickoff at noon and will be televised on ESPN2.