Lack of cornerback depth concerns Swinney

Lack of cornerback depth concerns Swinney

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Lack of cornerback depth concerns Swinney

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney has liked what he has seen from his starting cornerbacks after the first six practices of the spring.

He reports his corners are making some very good plays on the ball. They’re winning on the 50-50 balls and they are getting after his young wide receivers.

“I think our corners have had a really good edge to them,” the Clemson coach said earlier this week.

Swinney has “loved” what he has seen from veterans Trayvon Mullen and Mark Fields, and even sophomore A.J. Terrell.

“All three of those guys … they are really progressing and are just very focused,” Swinney said. “They are making plays on the ball. That group, you better have the right mindset when you line up with that group.”

Redshirt freshman LeAnthony Williams has also caught the head coach’s eye, as has Brian Dawkins, Jr. He said both have been very solid in practice.

But, as good as those five players have been this spring, depth is still an area of concern for Swinney at the cornerback position. Swinney says K’Von Wallace can play cornerback if they need him to and that he will do a good job, but they want to keep him at safety if they can.

“I don’t feel better about the depth,” he said. “I love our frontline guys. I think we are going to be fine there, but I will feel better when Kyler (McMichael) and Mario (Goodrich) get here. When they get here, I will feel a lot better.”

McMichael signed with the Tigers back in December, while Goodrich was inked last month. Both are very tall and physical corners. Goodrich will come in at 6-foot-2, 180 pounds, while McMichael will report at 6-foot-1, 185 pounds.

“We are counting on Kyler and Mario to come in here and help us,” Swinney said. “Kyler looks like a college junior. He can go right now, physically. We will see where he is technically, mentally and all of that stuff, and the same thing with Mario.

“These are two long, athletic, fast guys that you are plugging right into the mix. They are young guys, but we just need the depth. We have to get the depth there, but that is really the only position where I think we are just thin.”

Swinney says McMichael and Goodrich are two elite players they are throwing in that room that they need in there. When they join the team this summer, it will give Clemson the necessary seven players at cornerback that it needs to have.

“The corner position is the one spot where I think we have to grow up a little bit,” he said.

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