Bowden: Intensity Will Go Up, Jobs Are On The Line

by - Correspondent -

CLEMSON - You could see this one coming even before the team plane left Texas late Saturday night.

When Clemson hits the practice field today, head coach Tommy Bowden has some good, old-fashioned hard work prepared for them. On the line?


Such is the mindset after Saturday's 27-6 loss at Texas A&M. At 1-2 and with trips to Florida State and Virginia next on the schedule, it appears it's time to circle the wagons for the second time in less than a year.

"This was our poorest performance by far," Bowden said in his regular Sunday teleconference. "The lines are not (doing) very good. Offensively we can be more productive, but we're doing better there than on defense. Defensively we're not doing a very good job.

"It comes down to fundamentals. We missed more assignments than ever before, so this week we'll (scale back) on game-planning and do more work on the fundamentals. We've got to be smarter on what we ask them to do, and that's my job.

"We're going to increase the intensity."

And with it, he said, jobs will be on the line.

"Are there jobs up for grabs? There should be. There'd better be," he said.

When pressed as to which jobs, Bowden said at the moment he'd prefer to "keep that in house."

Most of the focus will be on a defense that is allowing rushing yardage at an alarming rate. But Bowden said there could be changes on offense, as well.


Defensive end Vontrell Jamison's career is likely over thanks to the torn Achilles tendon he suffered Saturday night.

Bowden, though, said he would fight for another year for the senior if Jamison so desired.

"I feel so sorry for him," Bowden said. "If there's a chance to get him a sixth year (because of injury), I'll try. I don't know if it's possible, but I'll try if I can."


After watching Stephen Furr miss his third kick in as many games Saturday, Bowden announced a change at kicker.

"Jad Dean will handle field goals and extra points," he said. "He's been doing well on kickoffss...he deserves a chance. (Furr) has missed three kicks in three games, so it's time to Jad his chance."


Running back Yusef Kelly's one-game suspension is now in the books, and Bowden said he will go right back to his previous spot in the running back rotation.

Either Kelly or Reggie Merriweather likely will start vs. Florida State, he said.

Kelly was suspended for the Texas A&M game for an unspecified violation of team rules.


Merriweather (offense), Travis Pugh (defense) and Justin Miller (special teams) took the weekly team MVP awards.

The team-voted captains for Florida State will be center Tommy Sharpe (offense), cornerback Tye Hill (defense) and Miller on special teams.

Dan Scott covers Clemson University for the The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Seneca Daily Journal/Clemson Messenger and TigerNet. He also hosts SportsTalk from 9 a.m.-Noon, Monday-Friday, on WCCP-Fm, 104.9. Click here for Dan Scott's SportsTalk discussion board.

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