Tyler Venables earns redemption, makes dad 'real proud'

Tyler Venables earns redemption, makes dad 'real proud'

Football

Tyler Venables earns redemption, makes dad 'real proud'

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As Boston College attempted a comeback drive to knock off Clemson, Tyler Venables dropped an interception.

It wound up not mattering, though, as K.J. Henry recovered a fumble on the ensuing play to seal Clemson’s 19-13 win over Boston College.

Still, Venables had a chance to redeem himself. 

“I was hoping I’d be ready the next time it happened,” Venables told reporters Tuesday. “Obviously, thankfully K.J. recovered that fumble the next play, otherwise I think I might’ve had a little bit more regret. I’m just thankful my teammates could help me on the next play, even though I dropped that one. Then, of course, the next week, it was good to get that one.”

Venables is referring to his first-career interception, which came at an opportune time and helped Clemson from entering an early deficit during the team’s 17-14 win over Syracuse this past Friday.

After Sean Tucker — who was named the ACC’s running back of the week — scampered for 54 yards on Syracuse’s third offensive possession, the Orange had first-and-10 from Clemson’s 19-yard line.

On the ensuing play, an errant Garrett Shrader came right to Venables. That turnover changed the trajectory of the first half, and gave way to a 12-play, 87-yard drive that ended in seven points for Clemson’s offense. 

“It’s very cool. My loyalty first and foremost is to him, so man that’s cool,” Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables said postgame regarding Tyler’s interception. “There’s a lot of football to be played, so it’s hard. If I was up there in the stands, I’d have it going on for sure…I’m real proud of him.”

A moment that calls for a warm embrace between father and son, didn’t quite happen until after the game in the parking lot.

“You really don’t have that dad moment,” Brent said Monday. “You kind of got to do that some other time. That’s what y’all signed up for though, having that kind of marriage that way if you will. It’s not an easy thing…being a dad and being excited for your child and stuff like that, you’re not able to do that as much and certainly not outwardly.”

“We didn’t really embrace at all because it’s strictly business on the field,” Tyler added Tuesday. “I got the interception, went back to the drawing board, and looked at what we did wrong on that drive. So, we really didn’t think about it or celebrate really that much until after the game.”

After playing quarterback for D.W. Daniel (Central, S.C.), Tyler has learned how to play the safety position under his father’s tutelage. There’s obviously a learning curve for Tyler, who hadn’t played safety since his sophomore year of high school, before he arrived at Clemson.

“He’s earned it,” Brent said. “He’s still learning how to play safety…but I’ve seen Tyler just get better and better. The more he’s played, the better he’s gotten. He’s probably the top-8 fastest guys on the whole team. I expected him to return [the interception] for a touchdown.”

Brent’s seen first hand the progression his son has made, especially making a difficult leap from high school quarterback to a college safety at a premiere program like Clemson.

“I think the hardest part was understanding coming down from angles and working tackling and whatnot and knowing that one wrong step and you’re going to miss your gap completely,” Tyler said when asked about the biggest adjustment he’s faced. “I don’t think I really understood that and got to develop that throughout high school.”

“He’s having to play catch up,” Brent added. “I think the transition for him [has gone] really well.”

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