By Gray Gardner.
Clemson starting safety Jonathan Meeks met with the media on Monday where he discussed the victory over Auburn and looked forward to the first ACC game against Florida State.
Question: Is it safe to say there were too many missied assignments Saturday, especially in the first half?
Meeks: Yeah we still have a lot of things we have to work on and clean up. We shoot for perfection, and I don’t know if we’ll ever reach that, but there will always be mistakes. We just have to communicate more and continue to get better.
Question: What did you think about the tackling Saturday?
Meeks: I thought it was better than the previous two weeks.
Question: What was that last week of practice like for you guys? Coach Steele said he was going to go “old school” on you guys as far as tackling considering some of the issues you had against Wofford.
Meeks: We had a little different drill that we had to do with a dummy bag and a sled, but intensity it was the same as the other weeks.
We had to push a sled – it was an individual sled – and you had to drive your feet with it and take it to the ground. It was pretty heavy though.
(The purpose was to emphasize) wrapping up and driving your feet.
Question: Is that something you had not done before?
Meeks: Not well, but we worked the drill.
Question: What are those meetings like at halftime and what is being changed for you guys to play so much better in the second half?
Meeks: I guess it’s just the guys’ focus, because we’re doing the same things. We make mistakes, so we clean those up. Coach – he’ll come and correct the things we stumbled on. It’s really no difference… nothing that goes and makes us better players or nothing like that.
Question: You guys were pretty excited after the victory Saturday. Have you guys come back down from that?
Meeks: Absolutely. It was a great win Saturday. But Sunday morning it was all over. We’ve got to get ready for the next one. It’s the only one that really matters.
Question: What do you remember from last year’s game against Florida State? It seemed like E.J. Manual had a lot of strong runs against you guys last year.
Meeks: Same thing, just better communication and containing the quarterback. They have a great athlete at quarterback right now. You just got to keep him contained.
Question: How do you think you guys have pogressed this season?
Meeks: We have a lot of young players, as you know. I feel like everyone is maturing. Guys are starting to believe more and more. That was a valuable win that we really neeeded and I guess that’s going to get guys to believe that if we play hard, better the second half, better the whole game, then we can actually be special on defense.
Question: Do you pay much attention to the fans? It was pretty intense on Saturday.
Meeks: Yeah we like the energy that they bring and we appreciate it a lot. You like crowd noise because it’s hard to hear, the offense can’t really communicate, the lines can’t really hear each other. So I enjoy having a sold out crowd.