During the regular season, Clemson’s offense will scout itself every three of four weeks and the defense will do the same. It’s a common practice with coaches anywhere as they try to improve and find out what tendencies they might be showing their opponents.
During the bye week, the Tigers’ offensive and defensive staffs continue to scout themselves, but they also take it to another level. They scout each other.
“Anytime you play seven games, we have some tendencies and things that we need to correct,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. “It is really good to have the time for your defense to really study your offense, like they’re the opponent. Then the offense studies the defense like they are the opponent this weekend.”
Swinney said they were able to pull some really good things from their studies and they will try to improve upon them before they host Georgia Tech next Saturday (8 p.m.) in Death Valley.
“We have a quality control thing that we believe in,” he said. “We usually do that every three or four games. This is kind of the second wave of that, but we have some stuff that I think we can do a much better job with and some things that we can break some tendencies.”
Clemson (6-1, 4-1 ACC) has a pretty good track record of getting things fixed during a bye week. Under Swinney, the Tigers are 7-2 following an open date and 3-1 when following an open date while coming off a loss.
Since 2012, Clemson is 42-7 (.857) overall after its bye week.
During the bye week this year, the Tigers learned they still have some basic things they have to fix. Swinney contributed some of it to youth and a little immaturity in some areas.
“You have two freshman quarterbacks that are learning every day and all that stuff,” he said. “You have young backs and we have to get better in our blitz pickups for sure. We have missed assignments outside where we are not doing what we are supposed to do in the run game so now our quarterback is getting hit.
“So it is really just little things. It is little things and little things lead to big things and that is something we have prided ourselves on and so we are just kind of getting back to the basics and fixing some of that stuff. We’re reiterating why we do things a certain way and then tweaking a few things that you learn from when you self-scout.”