Chancellor Says Defensive Backfield One of Strengths of Defense

by - Senior Writer -
Photos by Fotoman [Practice Gallery 2]

CLEMSON – Clemson cornerback Chris Chancellor has no problem telling anyone that will listen how he feels about the Clemson defense and its prospects for this coming season. And he also has a pretty good idea about where he and fellow cornerback Crezdon Butler fit in the hierarchy of corners across the nation.

”Hey, it’s like I say, we are the best tandem in the country, hands down,” Chancellor said after a recent Clemson practice. “We got out there and we play hard, play after play.”

This marks the third season that Chancellor will be the starting corner for the Tigers, and his resume is certainly good enough to back up his words. The Miami native has eight career interceptions [three against South Carolina], and if Clemson makes a bowl game this season, he would be the first cornerback in Clemson history to start in four bowl games.

However, Chancellor is usually more eager to talk about the group of defensive backs than he is his own play, and the group even has its own motto under first-year defensive coordinator Kevin Steele.

”Our motto is ‘If it’s not a pick, it’s a PBU,’” Chancellor said, citing the football terminology for an interception and a pass broken up. “We say that every time we go on the field. If something is thrown his [Butler’s] way, I feel I can trust him to make the play and not give up any big plays. Hopefully, he can say the same thing about me. That is why I feel we are the best in the nation.”

Chancellor said that working with Steele has the defense buzzing, and not just because of schemes. He feels this team has the talent to be dominating on the defensive side of the ball.

”Coach Steele has some great schemes, but it really doesn’t matter what scheme it is, we still have to go out and play,” Chancellor said. “We are going to play whatever and wherever he tells us. We have eight returning starters, and we have a lot of high-intensity guys. We are going to be very physical, and we are going to out there and be making a lot of plays.”

Butler has his own impressive resume, including needing only 80 interception return yards to have the most in Clemson history, and Chancellor said he feels blessed to be on the other side of the field from Butler.

”Me and Crez, we are just comfortable with each other,” Chancellor said. “We talk about making interceptions, we talk about receivers, and we just feel comfortable being around each other. But we have a great unit back there this season. DeAndre [McDaniel] and Sadat [Chambers] are really going to contribute this year. DeAndre is a ball-hawking player, and very physical. This unit, we all trust each other to get the job done. And that is exactly what we are going to do.”

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