Spring Practice Notes: Lots of young guys, freshmen standing out

Spring Practice Notes: Lots of young guys, freshmen standing out


Spring Practice Notes: Lots of young guys, freshmen standing out


Though Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney did not address the media following Monday’s practice, tight end Davis Allen and offensive tackle Jordan McFadden did offer up a few little nuggets as the Tigers wrapped up practice No. 13 behind the Allen Reeves Football Complex in Clemson.

Freshman tight end looks impressive. Allen said freshman tight end Jake Briningstool has been really impressive in practice and he just makes plays.

“He’s been great. Jake oozes with talent. He’s a great route runner. Really advanced game. I think in general, him coming in as an early enrollee, I’ve been impressed with his basic understanding of the game,” Allen said. “Obviously, it is a learning curve for him. Just a new offense and everything like that, so anything I can do to help, tips or things that I do to help me remember different things, I tell him that.

“But overall, I have been really impressed with him. He brings a great attitude every day. He works hard. He is a really hard worker both on the field and in the weight room. He is going to be something special.”

There is another young tight end showing off. Briningstool is not the only young tight end that has impressed Allen this spring. Redshirt freshman Sage Ennis has also been showing out in practice, according to Allen.

“He is really strong in the weight room,” Allen said. “He is fast. He is one of the fastest tight ends we have. And he is probably one of the strongest tight ends we have. He really understands the offense this year. He has had a really good spring. I am excited to see what he can do this season and in his future.

“I really truly believe that he has a bright future.”

How many reps is McFadden getting at left tackle? McFadden and sophomore Walker Parks are battling it out this spring for the starting spot at left tackle. So how many reps at left tackle is McFadden getting in practice?

“One day, right before practice, Coach (Robbie) Caldwell was like, ‘You are going to left today.’ And I have there ever since,” McFadden said. “It is just Coach Caldwell playing with it and seeing who is good where and who has the best opportunity to thrive at each position.”

It appears McFadden is thriving at left tackle.

“This is maybe my third or fourth practice at left tackle, maybe. I can’t remember the exact number, but it is either the third or fourth at left.”

McFadden gives his thoughts on Linthicum. “He is a young guy of course and it takes a while to learn. It took me forever to learn. I think he is coming on. He is a guy that wants to learn. He is a guy that wants to get better. He is a worker. He is strong and he is big. I think he will be a very special player throughout the year. On the offensive line he has a ways to go before, especially as an offensive line, before you mentality get everything down, but physically he’s got the right stuff.”

What makes Walker Parks so good? McFadden says the hype about Walker Parks is real. Why?

“Walker is nasty. He wants to put people in the dirt. You got to love that from him. He is an old fashion nasty guy. He is a hard worker,” McFadden said. “Me and him work out together in the weight room and he is one of the hardest working guys I have met in my whole life. He is just a guy that just constantly wants to get better…I definitely think the hype is real.”

McFadden hates going against Bresee. Swinney has said several times this spring how great Bryan Bresee has been practicing. The Clemson coach said he has been outstanding for most of the spring.

“I have to block him every day. I love him being on my team. Last year, you guys saw him come out and dominate every week,” McFadden said. “He’s just continuing to get better. He is getting bigger. Bryan is one of those guys that will out work people. He is so quick… Shooting gaps, passing rushing, he is a guy that is constantly making plays each and every day.

“I hate it at the moment, but that is what you love to see, especially from a guy like that. Supposed to have a big impact every year. A young guy. It is really just impressive watching him on film and in practice each and every day. It is really a blessing, honestly.”

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