Bowden Ensures Tigers Beat the Heat


by - Correspondent -
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CLEMSON - Though the first week of college football practice has been mild
from a weather standpoint, Clemson head coach Tommy Bowden isn't taking any
chances.


Always one to err on the side of caution, Bowden has tried to remain ahead of
the pack when it comes to ensuring his players get enough water during
practice. Even through the short flurry of heat-related deaths that struck
the sport a year ago, Bowden felt his program was well suited to avoid such
tragedy.


Never one to rest, however, Bowden has taken things a step further in the
early stages of fall practice. He has built in a timed water breaks during
practice, complete with separate tents for the offensive and defensive
players to get a break from the sun.


"The only thing different (from last year), to be honest with you, is the
tents," Bowden said following Saturday's second workout. "I'm just trying to
do everything conceivable to make sure we cover every base. I think last year
we probably did everything."


If nothing else, then, the tents may serve as little more than a mental lift
for the Clemson players.


But whatever the value, Bowden would rather be safe than sorry.


"There's always research being done and everybody shares information and
ideas when you have some deaths like we did last year," he said. "I'm just
trying to do everything to give the players...and parents a comfort zone
because of the heat.


"We've been blessed right now because it hasn't been real hot. But it will be
again next week."


Saturday's two practice sessions seemed to be more uneventful than anything,
though Bowden was happy to see defensive backs Eric Meekins and Travis Pugh
force turnovers.


The team won't practice today, instead meeting the public at 3 p.m. during
Fan Day. Fans will be able to interact with players and coaches under the
South Stands at Death Valley.


NOTES


- Wide receiver Kevin Youngblood (sprained foot) and tight end Bobby
Williamson (strained calf) were joined on the injured list Saturday by wide
receivers Jeff Scott (shoulder) and Michael Collins (hamstring).


Though none of the injuries are considered serious, having three wideouts
missing practice has Bowden mildly concerned about his numbers at that
position.


"It can make it a little difficult on you in practice," he said.


Defensive end Vontrell Jamison, who missed Friday's workouts suffering from
dehydration, was back on the field Saturday.


- Bowden singled out David Dunham and Altroy Bodrick for the day's biggest
hits on defense.


Dan Scott covers Clemson University for the Florence Morning News. He also hosts SportsTalk from 10 a.m.-Noon, Monday-Friday, on WCCP-Fm, 104.9. Click here for Dan Scott's SportsTalk discussion board.

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