Tigers Happy To Be Back On Normal Schedule

by - Correspondent -

CLEMSON - A week ago at this time the Clemson football team was in unfamiliar territory.

With just five days between games one and two, the Thursday before the Tigers' matchup with Louisiana Monroe was an unusual one for Tommy Bowden's team. There had been no overly physical practices, Bowden trying to save the legs of his players. There was only one extended practice.

Last Thursday, the walk-through was extended to try and make up for lost time.

The Tigers ripped the Warhawks last Saturday following the short week, but Bowden found plenty to be concerned about. Defensively his first team missed a number of tackles and assignments. Offensively he continued to have questions about his line.

Whether any of those questions on either side of the ball have been 100 percent addressed remains to be seen. But after practice Thursday night, the coach at least felt his team was in more of a comfort zone.

"Anytime you've had the normal amount of practice time, or a normal week as most college football coaches see it, you're going to feel more comfortable," he said. "We've been able to get a lot more done this week."

Included in that was a Tuesday spent reminding his players of fundamentals.

The tackling problems of last week caused Bowden to put his team through significant contact drills that day, both to get back into repetition and - perhaps - to get his team's attention.

"You think about it and we didn't hit like that in the two or three days before Florida State, and we didn't hit like that at all preparing for Louisiana Monroe," said Bowden. "So we hadn't done it in a while. Now, if it doesn't improve we'll hit like that Tuesday and Wednesday next week. If that doesn't work, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday the following week.

"And so on."


- Bowden said he hadn't talked to Cullen Harper about the comments he (Bowden) made Wednesday, insinuating that sometime down the road there might be circumstances arise which would see him go out of his way to find playing time for backup Willy Korn.

"Why would I talk to him about a hypothetical question?," Bowden said.

- Any shakeups which may come on the offensive line will likely be a game-time decision.

"We'll probably get out there and hit during pregame and see how some of those guys who are banged up react," said Bowden. "(Offensive line coach) Brad Scott's been working them in different areas, so if we have to make some moves it will be according to a plan."

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