By Ashley Denny.
CLEMSON, SC- Redshirt freshman Tavarius Barnes who came to Clemson a defensive end has now transitioned over to defensive tackle, a position the Tigers are lacking depth, after gaining 25 pounds, Barnes feels ready to compete and has looked at senior Rennie Moore, another defensive tackle his size, at 275 pounds as a person to emulate his game after.
“Rennie is like a big brother to me,” Barnes said after practice Monday. “He looks out for me all of the time, we are in the film room every weekend, every day and he’s always helping me better my game, we go over plays together and he helps me with my technique.”
Barnes, who like Moore is said to be a great pass rusher, believes that he’ll be able to play at 275-280 pounds this season.
“Coach Batson had me running and in the weight room this summer,” Barnes said. “I’ve been moving and weight training, and running, I think that I could definitely be effective at 275 pounds.”
How has Barnes improved over the summer?
“I think I know the play book a whole lot better than I did in the spring,” Barnes said. “The transition from spring to fall has been great and I really think I’m going have a much better fall than spring.”
What does Barnes think of defensive line coach Dan Brooks?
“Coach Brooks is great,” Barnes said. “He’s always on about technique, he’s a big technique guy, playing with leverage, and that’s what it’s all about, I’m learning a lot from him.”
Barnes has been moving his way up the depth chart since spring, and he’s ready to take on the responsibility of significantly more playing time.
“I’m very excited about the responsibility,” Barnes said. “All I can say is that I’m blessed, I’ve been put in a good situation and I want to do whatever I can to help the team win football games.”
As for goals for this season Barnes has just one.
“I just want to go out there and make plays,” Barnes said. “I’m going to do what I know I can do and I’m going to go out there and give it my all.”