Clemson practiced in the elements as it prepped for the Aggies
With game-time temperatures expected to be in the mid-90s by kickoff on Saturday, Clemson held the majority of its practices this week outside behind the Allen Reeves Football Complex. Earlier in the week, temperature soared up into the high 90s as the top-ranked Tigers prepped for Saturday’s 3:30 p.m. kick against No. 12 Texas A&M.
It would have been easy for Clemson to go indoors and practice in its state of the art, and more importantly, air-conditioned Poe Indoor Practice Facility. But that is not going to help the players on Saturday when the sun is beaming down on Frank Howard Field at Death Valley.
“It is definitely helpful, as opposed to being in Maine,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. “I assume it is cool in Maine. I don’t really know, but I am assuming its cooler in Maine and then having to come down here and play. The fact is this is just our normal climate and being able to practice in it certainly helps you being able to simulate the game environment. There is no doubt about it.”
However, don’t think it gives Clemson an advantage over the Aggies. It is hot and humid in Texas, too. In fact, it might be hotter as temperatures have soared past 100 degrees all week in College Station.
“These are tough days. Saturday is going to be a tough day and our Tuesday and Wednesday practices are tough,” Swinney said. “That’s part of really growing our team and teaching our team how to practice on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. How to strain?
“Again, we got eighty freshmen and sophomores, forty first-year guys that have not been through a true game week. So, learning how to practice, learning how to strain on Tuesdays and Wednesdays (is important). Wednesday is a two-minute day. We finish two-minute (drill) at the end of practice. It is kind of like a game, fourth quarter at the end of the game. It has been a long game, you’re tired. So, I think the heat definitely helps us to simulate the elements.”
However, at the end of the day, the Tigers still have to be able to put it all together in the heat come Saturday. It’s a good thing they don’t live in Maine.
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