Thursday Thoughts

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Thursday Thoughts

Big Name Opponent, Big Name Coach

This year's Russell Athletic Bowl presents Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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and the Clemson program the opportunity to knock off another top program and another big name coach.

The last two bowls Clemson has beaten LSU and Ohio State. Both were ranked in the top ten at the time. This year Oklahoma is not ranked in the top ten, but the Sooners still are considered one of the national powers in the sport.

Oklahoma would be the third national title program Swinney has beaten in the last three bowl games. The Sooners claim seven national titles, the same number as Ohio State. LSU claims three national championships.

If Swinney can beat Stoops later this month it would mark the seventh national champion coach that he has taken down. In his short tenure at Clemson, Swinney has beaten Bobby Bowden and Urban Meyer who have won two titles each. Swinney has also beaten Steve Spurrier, Les Miles, Gene Chizik and Jimbo Fisher who have one title each.

If the Tigers could knock off Oklahoma, Swinney would have beaten six of the top 11 winningest active coaches in college football. Frank Beamer is number one with 230 wins. Steve Spurrier is second with 225 wins. Oklahoma's Bob Stoops is the sixth winningest active coach with 168 victories. Mark Richt is ninth with 135 and Les Miles is tied for 11th with 131 wins.

Coaching U

With the official announcement of Brandon Streeter being named quarterback coach and recruiting coordinator, Dabo Swinney also sent a message to former, current and future players at Clemson. The message is if you want a future in coaching, Clemson may be a place you can work towards getting back to.

Robbie CaldwellRobbie Caldwell
Assistant Coach / Offensive Line
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is the only offensive coach on the current staff that did not play here at Clemson. Co-Offensive coordinator and running backs coach Tony ElliottTony Elliott
Assistant Coach / Running Backs
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is former wide receiver for the Tigers. Co-Offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Jeff ScottJeff Scott
Asst. Coach (WR) / Recruiting Coord.
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is a former Clemson wide receiver. Special teams coordinator and tight ends coach Danny PearmanDanny Pearman
Assistant Head Coach / Tight Ends
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is a former tight end for the Tigers and now Streeter joins the staff as the recruiting coordinator and quarterbacks coach after he starred with the Tigers at quarterback.

I also find it interesting that four former Tigers hold coordinator roles on the current staff with defensive coordinator Brent VenablesBrent Venables
Def. Coordinator / Linebackers
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being the only coordinator that didn't play here.

There is a balance between hiring from the outside and promoting from within. There is also a balance between outsiders with new ideas and keeping tradition with hiring former players. For years Clemson went without any former players on staff, so it is nice to see some of our former players get a chance to come back home.


The staff got a lot out of the three true freshmen that played this past season. It is obvious the impact Deshaun WatsonDeshaun Watson
Fr. Quarterback
#4 6-3, 204
Gainesville, GA

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had on the program. Artavis ScottArtavis Scott
Fr. Wide Receiver
#3 5-11, 190
Oldsmar, FL

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had a huge year including the two long touchdowns against South Carolina and Adam ChoiceAdam Choice
Fr. Running Back
#26 5-10, 211
Thomasville, GA

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showed promise at running back before he tore his ACL.

The staff was able to redshirt 13 freshmen this past season including running back CJ Fuller, wide receiver Trevion ThompsonTrevion Thompson
Fr. Wide Receiver
#1 6-3, 191
Durham, NC

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, tight ends Milan RichardMilan Richard
Fr. Tight End
#80 6-3, 243
Savannah, GA

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and Cannon SmithCannon Smith
Fr. Tight End
#84 6-5, 235
Columbia, SC

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, offensive linemen Taylor HearnTaylor Hearn
Fr. Offensive Line
#51 6-3, 305
Williston, SC

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and Justin FalcinelliJustin Falcinelli
Fr. Offensive Tackle
#50 6-5, 300
Middleton, MD

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, defensive end Richard YearginRichard Yeargin
Fr. Defensive End
#49 6-4, 225
Lauderdale Lakes, FL

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, defensive tackle Jabril RobinsonJabril Robinson
Fr. Defensive Tackle
#96 6-2, 255
Leland, NC

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, linebackers Chris RegisterChris Register
Fr. Outside Linebacker
#45 6-4, 242
Greensboro, NC

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, Korie RogersKorie Rogers
Fr. Outside Linebacker
#43 6-2, 242
Buford, GA

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and Kendall JosephKendall Joseph
Fr. Linebacker
#34 5-11, 230
Belton, SC

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, defensive back Jefferie GibsonJefferie Gibson
Fr. Safety
#38 6-3, 190
Hope Mills, NC

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and kicker Alex SpenceAlex Spence
Fr. Kicker
#47 6-2, 190
Florence, SC

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I hear very good things about all of the red-shirted players. The ones that I probably hear more about include Richard, Falcinelli, Robinson and Joseph. Thompson, and Yeargin also get positives mentions frequently.

I have not heard anything negative on any of the red-shirt players this year and I hear the staff feels each has a chance to develop into the kind of the players they felt they were when they were recruiting them.

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Prayer List

The prayer list is a medium for our community to recognize those that are in need. If you would like to add someone to the list, please email me at Please let me know when it is appropriate to remove a person off the list.

Those who need our prayers include: Jo Ann Bachman, Kenneth Bryant, Pruitt Martin, Got Igers and his family, David Rowland, Leonard, Gillespie and his family, Jim S., Daniel Rosborough, the Huffman family, Nancy Winkler, John Reeve, Vinnie Brock, Kaitlyn L., Susan Miller, Joyce Harley, Steve Proveaux, Jeffrey Greene, the Hutto family, Sherl Drawdy, Caleb Kennedy, Teresa O'Connor, Matt Jacobs, Perrin Seigler, Candee Massee, Lindsey Jordan, Sam Catoe, Tyler Felch, the Nicolopulos family, "the Jacksonville, FL guys," Kim Sims, the Coyle family, Ryleigh Tedder, Steve Lee, Kelly Trakas, Jimmy Moore, the Thomas V. family, Emary Claire Young, Kitty Bowers, Julie Locke, the Scheider family, Lauren Kittles' family, Frank Gentry, Stacey McKeown, Dale Childs, Larry Lentz, Jr., Carl Sharperson, Scott Hannon, William Perry, Tyler Swaney, Lillian, Mark Feit, David Frame, the family of Matthew M. Watson, the Dowis family, Alan Putnam, the Olivers, Lee Tate, Ronnie Abrams, Eddie Greene, the Jackson family, Bill Vader, Jim Taylor, Tina DeWitt, Rock Horne, Bobby Wayne Thomas, Emma and Danielle Carothers, Robert Ditty, Mr. and Mrs. Murray Smith, Millie Heatley, Lynn Martin and family, Michael Pinson, Jake David family, Angie Crowley, Ira, Mike Tolson, Poly Wells, Dr. Muriel Bishop, Jack Cunningham, Emily Jefford Meister, Zachary Stoller, Aaron Clackum, Pat James, Cortney Moore, William Moore, Angelia and Savannah Anderson, William Ross, Scott Johns, Frank Carroll, Brandon ThompsonBrandon Thompson
Defensive Tackle (2008 - 2011)
#98 6-2, 310
Thomasville, GA

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, Alvin Sammons, Georgine McAlhaney, Glen Davis, Mike Price, Clay Childers, Aaron Knight, Danielle Johnston and family, Nicholas Abrams, Lana Kuykendall, Gary, Gary G., William Huggins, Jim Bennett, Chantz Fowler, Ethel McElveen, Michele Gurganus, William Gentry, Lewis Usher and Tanya Sanders,  Shon Cooper, Nick Collins, Amanda Peake, Danny Hammond, Chip Turner, Nick Collins, Allen Steen, the Sturkey family, the Lance family, Nick Chrisley's family, Allison Williams, Lt. Kyle Walker, Summer and Joel Johnson, Nicole O'Donnell, James O. Johnson, Joy Pruett and family, Bill Schmidt, Jack Bailey, Gardner Family, Charles Turner, Kathy Bartholomew, Ray Sanders, David and Robin Blocker, J.R. Ray, Kenneth Kowe, Lauren Sielicki, Jenna Phipps, Mark Lawrence, Jonathan and Jacki Sullins, Peter Laboy, Kat and Carlisle Jones, Elizabeth Galloway and family, Anita McDonald, Willard Harryman, Liz Surratt, Molly Senn, Jackie Shearer, Richard Sellers, Tim Drisdelle, Edward Easterling, Dawson Bourne, Susan and Mike Brown, Julie Goodman Marshall, Willard and Dorothy Harryman, Justin Jernigan, Jack  Cunningham,  Mia Daughtery, Tee Senn, Bob Garrett, Skylar, Joseph Thomas, Mrs. Nelis, Jeanne Thompson, Sean Rowell, George Parker, Levon KirklandLevon Kirkland
# 0, 0

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and family, Catherine Sewell, Randy Davenport, David Vaughn, Keith Dalton, B.T., Bill Hilbig, Rita Elrod Hammond and family, Jim McKeller, Tony Alewine, Sharon Storck, Dick Baird, Richard Bagnal, Dustin and Brittany Peurifoy, Jan Allan, Josh Cox, Gregg and Sylvia Lewis, Travis Hamrick, Kaki Harmon, Brandy Stephens, Jammie McKellar and babies, Karen Edwards, Jackson Lindsey, Cathy Hutson Gregg, Kristin Heckman, Jennifer Johnson, Jay Johnson, Lyndsie Johnson, Emily Davis, Hayes Davis, Judy Towe, Johnny Towe, Ken Brown, Elaine Brown, Rhonda Thompson, Tim Davis, Jacob Greinke, Jack Finley, Richard and Clara Crawford, Zach and Griffin Johnson, Israel, Frankie Allen, Bobby Allen, the Wessinger family, the Parsons family, Todd Price and family, Rosemary A Flynn, Dr. Mickey Shealy family, Sarah McManus, Mr. Gillespie, Al Evans, Craig Rush, Bobbi Nicholson, and our great country and the men and women in uniform that protect and serve it every day, plus their families.

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