Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney came to the defense of his offensive coordinators, Jeff Scott and Tony Elliott, Monday night on his weekly call in show.
A fan asked Swinney if the Tigers’ success the last three games was due to calling fewer RPOs than they were earlier in the year. Clemson, who host Wofford on Saturday, has averaged 49.7 points and 592.3 yards per game in blowout victories over Florida State, Louisville and Boston College the last three weeks.
“I think the results kind of speak for themselves,” Swinney said after chuckling a little bit. “I think Tony and Jeff have done an amazing job really since 2014 when I promoted them. The proof is in the pudding and this year is no different. We are not really doing anything different than we did at the beginning of the year. We are just executing at a very high level.”
Swinney said the Tigers (8-0, 6-0 ACC) had two or three touchdowns off RPOs in their 59-7 win over Boston College last Saturday. They racked up a season high 674 total yards, and the 59 points were a season high, too.
Quarterback Trevor Lawrence played his best game of the year, throwing for 275 yards and three touchdowns on 16 of 19 passing with no interceptions. Running back Travis Etienne ran for 109 yards and scoring three touchdowns, while Diondre Overton caught three passes for 119 yards and scored all three times he touched the football.
The Clemson offense scored the first six times it possessed the ball last Saturday.
“The biggest thing to is that everybody judges everything off the North Carolina game, and we didn’t play well in the North Carolina game,” Swinney said. “We didn’t coach well. We didn’t play well, and they played exceptionally well. And we turned it over and they didn’t. They played a clean game, but we won the game. But outside of that game we have had a heck of a year.”
The Tigers had their worst game of the year in rallying to beat North Carolina. They were held to a season low 331 yards.
Swinney said the media, especially the national media, has played a huge role in the perception that the Tigers have struggled on offense this year. However, that is not accurate. In all, but two games, Clemson has totaled more than 465 yards and has scored 41 or more points in six of the eight games.
Three times the Tigers have produced 600 or more yards, which is already tied for a school record in a single season. They also had two other games in which they produced more than 550 yards of total offense.
Clemson enters this week’s game ranked fourth nationally in total offense, averaging 525.9 yards per game, and is seventh in scoring offense at 42.4 points per game.
“I think people are influenced by what the media talks about and they don’t know what they are talking about half the time,” Swinney said. “They just go with the narrative that sounds good. And you know your star quarterback is never supposed to make a mistake and all of a sudden, he throws a couple of not just interceptions but really just bad plays. Trevor has had about eight terrible plays and he has had well we have had eight games. I don’t know he has had 350 great plays.
“That is just kind of the world that we live in. If it bleeds it leads, as they say for the press and TV.”
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