|by David Hood|
The Tigers returned to the practice field Thursday after taking Wednesday off for the first day of classes, and Swinney said the practice “stunk.”
“I thought it stunk. I thought it was very average,” Swinney said. “Very mentally sluggish would be the way I would sum practice up today. We would have gotten beat 65-0 today. I am really disappointed. Just not a lot of attention to details and we just didn’t practice with a lot of purpose today. That is probably the worst practice we’ve had maybe all of camp, which is pretty disappointing. We wasted a day today, and we have a lot of work to do tomorrow.”
Swinney said the players lacked mental toughness.
“They were feeling sorry for themselves,” he said. “Class and this that. Just not focused. I am very disappointed.”
Swinney said it is too early to start thinking about the Georgia game being close at hand.
“We still have a lot of preparation to do,” he said. “I know maybe for the fans it seems like tomorrow, but we have a lot of work to do. We have a lot of preparing to do with this team. We are really getting heavy into the game plan right now, and we have a big situational deal tomorrow night. We are going to play a mock game. We are going to throw a lot at them tomorrow night and see how they respond. We are going to put them under the lights and see how they respond.”
Swinney said that Kalon Davis was back at practice, and they hope to have Jayron Kearse back on Monday. Ben Boulware has been dinged up, but he hopes Boulware can play Friday night. Adrian Baker will be back on Monday, and he hopes that Tyshon Dye and MacKensie Alexander will be ready to go on Monday.
Swinney said he thinks they have four starters at cornerback – Bashaud Breeland, Martin Jenkins, Darius Robinson and Garry Peters.
“I think our offensive line has come together nicely,” Swinney said. “I think we have 10, 11, 12 and maybe 13 guys that are worth mentioning. But I really feel good about the first seven or eight guys. They have experience and toughness. They know what they are doing. But we have better competition than we have had in past years. We have guys that I trust can go play, and that is the best part.”
“They are a great football team, and there is a reason that people are picking them to win the national championship. They have a great quarterback and as good a running back as I will see while I am at Clemson. They have outstanding skill players, veteran offensive line. Defensively, they have some unknowns. Everybody says they are thin on defense, but they have guys that have started a lot of games.”
David Hood can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org