Clemson, SC-Clemson Head Coach Tommy Bowden welcomed 19 first year
players to their first Tiger football practice on Tuesday. The
Tigers worked out twice on Tuesday on the practice fields behind the
Jervey Athletic Center, from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM in the first
session and from 4:45 PM to 6:15 PM in the afternoon.
Three of the 22 scholarship first-year players were missing
as practice began. Those players include freshman wide receiver
Tymere Zimmerman of Bennettsville, SC, freshman linebacker Donnell
Clark of Griffin, GA and freshman running back Duane Coleman of
Naples, FL. All will come to Clemson once they are cleared by the
One player who received word that he had been cleared on
Monday night was freshman wide receiver Kelvin Grant. He reported to
practice on Tuesday morning. Grant was a SuperPrep and USA Today
All-American last year at Camden High School where he caught 59
passes for 1184 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Three of the 19 players who started practice are junior
college transfers. Two of the three, Brandon Jamison and Kelvin
Morris, have three years to play two, but Bowden announced that
Vontrell Jamison, a 6-8 defensive end from Holly Hill, SC, had three
years to play three. Morris began practice at the rover position, a
position in John Lovett's defense that calls on a player to help as a
pass rusher and defender.
"We need to find a place for Vontrell Jamison to play right
now," said Bowden. "We would be wasting a year to red-shirt him, so
we need to find somewhere for him to play. We won't work him any
harder than anyone else, but it will be important to find the right
position for him early in the preseason. We need to get him on the
field." Bowden said Jamison was in good physical shape and had the
second best 225 bench press reps on the team.
Bowden was happy with the physical condition and the
attitude of his first-year players. "We worked a lot on technique,
assignments that type of thing. They have four shots (practices) to
get that down before the varsity joins them for practice on Friday.
If they can accomplish that they will have made progress.
"We worked a lot on where to lineup, drills, that sort of
thing. In the morning we also worked on special teams. Everyone
tried out as a return person, snapper, some place they could help on
Bowden said one of his main messages on Tuesday was patience.
"It is a big adjustment coming from high school to college. These
players put a lot of pressure on themselves. I try to tell them to
"Just look at Rod Gardner. He didn't have many catches his
first two years after red-shirting as a freshman. He changed
positions three times before he settled at wide receiver. In five
years he had a degree, was an All-American and a first round draft
choice. He had to be patient, but it certainly paid off for him."
Clemson's freshmen will continue their work with two
practices on Wednesday. The two practices are open to the public.
The full squad will practice for the first time on Friday morning.
Those practices will be closed.
Fan Appreciation Day on Sunday
Clemson, Sc-Clemson will hold its annual Fan Appreciation Day at
Death Valley this Sunday from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM. All Clemson
players and coaches will be available for autographs and to pose for
photos under the South Stands at Death Valley. The function will not
be held in Littlejohn Coliseum due to the renovation projects at that
facility. Admission is free of charge. Clemson posters also will be
available. Game tickets and the Clemson Media Guide also may be
purchased on Sunday.
Clemson, SC-A reminder to all fans that season football tickets,
single game football tickets (with the exception of the USC game) and
group football tickets still remain for the 2002 campaign. Tickets
can be purchased by calling 1-800-CLEMSON or by ordering them on-line