Notebook: Venables names his starting linebackers

Notebook: Venables names his starting linebackers

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Notebook: Venables names his starting linebackers

While Dabo Swinney and co-offensive coordinator Jeff Scott were fielding more questions on what day they’re hopeful to name a starting quarterback, Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables listed off his starting linebackers if he had to name starters today.

Following Saturday’s 106-play scrimmage at Death Valley, Venables named Tre Lamar, Kendall Joseph and Isaiah Simmons has his starters, along with J.D. Davis as a co-starter.

Venables also said Chad Smith has also earned the right to be there.

“(James) Skalski has still not practiced, and Shaq Smith is on the up,” Venables said. “He’s had a really good camp so far. J.D. has had a really good camp so far. Jalen (Williams) has been really good until today.

“Judah Davis, he was physical and he was flying all over making good plays. But I thought Tre Lamar, Kendall and J.D. were really good today.”

Speaking of the quarterbacks. Scott said Kelly Bryant had two touchdown throws, Chase Brice had a couple of touchdown throws as well and Trevor Lawrence made some big-time throws and had a lot of explosive plays.

Wideouts shine. Swinney named Tee Higgins, T.J. Chase, Amari Rodgers, Diondre Overton and Cornell Powell as some of the players that had a good scrimmage offensively.

Lyn-J shows out. Clemson running back Travis Etienne had a long touchdown run and then broke off another long run as well. Tavien Feaster got into the mix and made some nice plays as well.

However, the star of the show was once again freshman Lyn-J Dixon.

“Twenty-three has no fear,” Swinney said. “He has one gear — wide open. Great vision. He had two long runs, so really encouraged by what I’ve seen from him.”

Secondary was a little thin. One area Clemson cannot afford to have and injury is in the secondary. The Tigers are thin with depth at defensive back and at safety.

Clemson was a little thinner at cornerback in Saturday’s scrimmage. Freshman Mario Goodrich, who has been one of the talks of camp in the first week, did not play in the scrimmage.

Venables reported Goodrich is dealing with a groin injury, which is why he was in yellow during the scrimmage.

Clemson’s defense was also without starting cornerback Trayvon Mullen, who had to attend a funeral on Saturday.

Other injuries. Swinney said wide receiver Trevion Thompson cold not finish the scrimmage after he got banged up.

Freshman tight end Braden Galloway was also held out of the scrimmage. Scott reported he has now missed the last couple of practices.

Scott did not say what the injury was to Galloway, but indicated it was not serious.

Clemson will host its annual Fan Appreciation Day at Death Valley on Sunday, starting at 2:30 p.m. The Tigers will return to practice on Monday.

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