Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables was less than happy with his defenses’ performance Saturday night against South Carolina.
The Tigers may have won the game, 56-35, but to Venables all he saw was a defense that needs some work. He even said he was disgusted with himself, but that he has no doubts his players will come back.
Clemson allowed 600 yards, including 510 passing yards to the Gamecocks at Memorial Stadium.
Venables on how the game went for him
“It was painful. I’m proud of our guys to be 12-0, and to beat our rival five years in a row. That’s only been done once in 78 years. I’m proud of our guys, particular our seniors…incredible leadership. I think they’ve won 52 games. They finished off their last game at Death Valley. That’s big time. I’m disappointed in our performance tonight, not with everyone. I think South Carolina and Jake (Bentley) had a good plan. They played well.”
Venables on how his defense played against the Gamecocks
“Obviously, I didn’t coach them very well tonight. I’m embarrassed at different things that happen tonight. It’s my responsibility to get our guys ready, and we weren’t as sharp as we’ve been. I think we gave up three games worth of passing yards tonight. We did a lot of fundamental and technical things wrong. Again, that’s my responsibility to make sure that guys are in good position and playing with good technique and doing the little things right early on in the game. We allowed them to get into rhythm and did a poor job adjusting obviously. I’m pretty disgusted with myself.”
Venables says there’s not much to be excited about
“I thought a majority of our guys played with great effort. There was probably a bunch of guys who played really well. We had a couple of really good fourth down stops that ended up being the difference in the game. J.D. (Davis) had a nice pick. I don’t think we scored off of that drive. There’s not a lot to be excited about, other than we are going to the ACC championship. Again, we are 12-0. It’s hard to do. We played pretty well all year. I felt we were in really good rhythm and look at tonight as hopefully a minor set back. There’s some things we have to improve on. We’ve got some things exposed tonight. We’ll have to look at scheme wise and personnel wise what we’re doing.”
Venables attribution to the two goal-line stances
“The will of our players and toughness of them. That’s never in question. Our guys have played tough and have had great will all year long. They have a fight to them. I don’t want to make a mountain out of molehill, but there’s just a lot of pathetic football plays out there tonight. It’s just disgusting. I’m embarrassed to put that product on the field. That’s my responsibility, and my name is all over it. I’ve just got work to do. In regards to the goal line, those were great stops. Incredible will and guys making some plays.”
Venables on his concerns
“I do believe that we’re better than that. I know we are. We’ve got 12 games of proof. I think that was a small sample tonight. There’s somethings we can’t ignore without question. We’re got some work to do…no question. There’s no doubt our guys will come back. I just left the locker room and I know where the accountability and responsibility is.”