Clemson teammate sees noticeable difference in this intangible from Uiagalelei

Clemson teammate sees noticeable difference in this intangible from Uiagalelei

Football

Clemson teammate sees noticeable difference in this intangible from Uiagalelei

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Depending on who you talk to within the Clemson football program, the areas of improvement for D.J. Uiagalelei vary.

Some have spoken about seeing better accuracy from the Tigers’ junior quarterback. Other have been quick to mention his improved mobility at the position after dropping roughly 30 during the offseason.

For tight end Davis Allen, the first thing that comes to when discussing the area in which Uiagalelei has made the most strides has nothing to do with his physical abilities. Yet it’s an area that’s nonetheless important for someone lining up at the most important position on the field.

“He’s really become more vocal,” Allen said. “Everybody talks about his weight and all that crap, but the way he is and the way he acts around all the guys – skill and drills, weights and all of that – he’s trying to lead. And guys appreciate that because guys can see the effort he’s making in that aspect. Everybody on this team respects D.J., especially on offense. Everybody respects D.J. Everybody loves D.J. So from that standpoint, he’s really tried to lead and be a good encourager.”

Allen used the offseason as an example. He said Uiagalelei came to the tight ends wanting to meet with them once a week leading into preseason camp in order to improve the chemistry between quarterback and position group. Allen said Uiagalelei did the same with the receivers, running backs and offensive line.

“The tight ends, we’d meet one day during the week after our classes and all that. And then the next day, we were trying to meet with D.J.,” Allen said. “It was just (him) and the tight ends. Let’s try to figure this out. If we’re doing something new with the offense, we’re trying to learn it, go through it together and trying to understand. He wanted us to know what his process is. We really broke down every little detail that we can because we learned last year that little details are huge.

“You can tell he’s really tried to be a leader.”

Asked if it’s a trait of Uiagalelei’s that he feels has been overlooked during the offseason, Allen said it’s one that’s been in the Tigers’ signal caller since he arrived on campus nearly three years ago. It’s just been amplified.

“People talk about what they want to talk about,” Allen said. “But I know from where I stand and from the guys on the offense stand and this team, nothing’s changed about D.J. D.J. has been D.J. this whole time. The respect for D.J. has always been there. The love for D.J. has always been there. We know what kind of worker he is. The outside noise is kind of just whatever, but from the inside, we’re all behind D.J. and we’re all behind each other.”

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