CLEMSON - The first day of work in full pads Tuesday saw Clemson's defense
gain the upper hand over its offense, though not as much as head coach Tommy
Bowden had hoped.
"You'd like to get to the point where the defense dominates," he said after
the day's second workout. "You'd like to be surprised when the offense goes
downfield and scores on your defense. I know (offensive coordinator) Brad
(Scott) doesn't want to see that, but I'd like to. We're just not there yet."
Bowden cited the play of cornerback Toure Francis and defensive tackle Todd
McClinton from the morning's live scrimmage.
Francis, a walk-on as a true freshmen but on scholarship the past two
seasons, is back on walk-on status again this fall, at least for the time
being. Bowden said Francis has pulled ahead of incumbent starter Kevin
Johnson at the cornerback slot, and appears to be first in line to be placed
back on scholarship among the existing walk-ons.
"He has played well overall and has adapted to Coach (John) Lovett's system,"
Bowden said. "He has been steady. Being an ex-walk-on myself, you like to
see a walk-on get in a position to have a starting role."
McClinton's day was one of ups and downs.
After showing well during the morning session - playing well enough for
Bowden to specifically mention his effort after reviewing the practice film -
McClinton pulled a hamstring and missed the afternoon workout.
"That's a shame, because he looked so good," Bowden said. "We're hoping he's
only going to be out a couple of days."
- The Tigers prepared for today's live goal line situational scrimmage by
working on third-and-five type situations, and later did their first work in
11-on-11 blitz pickup situations. Rodney Feaster and John Leake each had
interceptions during skeleton drills.
- Linebacker David Dunham was carted out of practice after "having his bell
rung," Bowden said. He is expected to be back today "depending on how many
fingers he can count in the morning."
- Senior Altroy Bodrick also missed Tuesday's second workout. Bodrick had his
nose reset after suffering a dislocation while delivering a hit last
Saturday. DeJuan Polk (ankle) also missed the second practice, while Kevin
Youngblood (foot), Dustin Fry (knee) and Nathan Gillespie (knee) missed both
Multimedia from the First Day of Practice in Pads
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.