Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables took some time to speak with the media on Monday afternoon as the Tigers get set to visit Florida State this Saturday at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Fla.
The third-ranked Tigers have won the last three meetings and are looking for their first four-game win streak in the series. However, this is a new FSU team with Willie Taggart now in charge.
The Seminoles have ditched the pro-style offense they ran for some many years under former head coach Jimbo Fischer for an up-tempo, spread offense.
Venables on Florida State’s new offense
“Every year is different…They’ve got a terrific group of skilled athletes, starting with the quarterback. That’s a terrific player and great quarterback and the running back, the skill at receiver and tight end…very, very talented group of players.”
Venables says his guys already know who Florida State is
“We’re not the only team that’s got big, athletic, explosive playmakers. They’ve got them too…It won’t be hard for our guys, before they even show up here, they already know who Florida State is and what they are capable of.”
Venables describes safety Nolan Turner’s development
“Confidence. That is the biggest thing. He didn’t come in here ‘fragile’ by any stretch…He’s impressed all of us, not just this past week, but he’s really had a great fall camp. He knows what to do. He’s a good athlete. He can tackle well in space, can run, tough kid, can coach him hard. I have really been pleased with his development.”
Venables on Isaiah Simmons’ versatility
“He is versatile. He’s long and athletic, he can run…He made a bunch of plays and had a ton of production on Saturday. If he just cleans up a few things…he probably would have been player of the game…I think that he is going to be just a terrific, disruptive player. He’s doing pretty good now, but I think there is still so much more for him.”
Venables on coaching K’von Wallace
“K’Von’s fun. He’s a good teammate…He‘s got a lot of natural ability, good instincts for the game, a good feel for the game, he can play multiple positions for us. That maturation process is still happening for him mentally and physically. He has a chance to be, again, another terrific player. He is not yet, I think he is a good player…I love where he’s at and the direction he is going.”
Venables says KJ Henry pushed the agenda to redshirt
“So, K.J. was somebody that really felt, ‘Hey man! I could really benefit from a redshirt year.’ And so, he’s the one that kind of pushed that agenda. And, we weren’t against it. We just didn’t know how our position was going to be early, before you get to the season.”