Saturday was a perfect day for spring football in Clemson.
The temperature at Clemson was 72 degrees. There sky was clear. Normally 60,000 orange-clad fans would be tailgating in the parking lots outside of Memorial Stadium and filling in the lower bowl to see the progress of their Tigers.
One of the battles the fans would have be interested in seeing is the battle between Taisun Phommachanh and D.J. Uiagalelei to be Trevor Lawrence’s backup at quarterback.
However, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, Clemson’s annual Orange & White Spring Game was canceled, and Death Valley sits empty, while the Tigers’ quarterback battle remains incomplete for the time being.
“They are still battling there. We are a way away from that, we got a long way until September,” head coach Dabo Swinney said during a conference call with the media on Friday. “There is a lot of work to be done. I wish we would have been able to finish.”
Like the fans, Swinney was looking forward to seeing how his two young quarterbacks—Phommachanh, a redshirt freshman, and Uiagalelei, a freshman—would perform in front of a big crowd at Memorial Stadium.
“That was something I was really, really excited about for [Saturday], to be able to run those two bucks out there in front of about 70,000 people, ESPN and all of that,” Swinney said. “Coach Swinney standing right behind them on the field and Trevor Lawrence over there with a ballcap on. Let them two go at it. That was going to be my plan and that would have been a blast.”
Swinney continued by saying they both young quarterbacks still have some work to do, but they have been working out during the quarantine period.
“Taisun has been here longer and, obviously, D.J. only has nine practices, so if you play today, certainly Taisun would run out there at two, but we have a long way to go and a lot of competition ahead.”
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