Freshman Class Continues to Impress Bowden


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Clemson, SC-Clemson head football coach Tommy Bowden continued to praise his freshman class after practice on Monday. The Tigers worked for three hours through rain, heavy at times, on the practice
fields behind the Jervey Athletic Center. It was the last practice
in shells (shoulder pads and shorts). Tuesday the Tigers will put on a full uniform for the first time.

"We have had a lot of rain so far and we had a deluge for about a half hour in the middle of practice," said Bowden, who is beginning his seventh season as Clemson head coach. "When you have rain like that and it is the fourth day of practice the enthusiasm can die down a bit. But, Rendrick Taylor made a big play on a reception and C.J. Gaddis had a hit in the secondary that rejuvenated the enthusiasm."


Taylor is one of two freshmen wide receivers Bowden has
talked about in the preseason. The Shrine Bowl player who was
ranked among the top five players in South Carolina (Marlboro County High School) last year could see considerable playing time along with classmate Tyler Grisham of Birmingham, AL.

"We could see a lot of first-year freshmen see playing time
this year. We played nine in 2001 and we could reach that number
this year." Another first-year freshman who saw a lot of playing time in practice with the number-one unit was Barry Humphries, a 290-pounder from Anderson, SC and Belton-Honea Path High School.

"Dustin Fry was a little banged up and we wanted to save him for Tuesday and the first day of practice. So Barry got most of the snaps with the first team for the second half of practice. He is a strong young man in good physical condition. He doesn't look 290 pounds."


Bowden also mentioned freshman Cory Lambert, a native of Greenville and Greenville High School. "Cory reported in good shape. He did not play football last year, but was able to control his diet and worked hard in terms of conditioning. He isn't in football shape yet because he hasn't played in practice or a game since 2003, but he is making progress."


When asked what he was most interested in seeing during Tuesday's first practice in pads, Bowden said, "I am looking forward to seeing the running backs and the defensive line. We will be able to take the practice to another level from a fundamentals standpoint. There are a lot of drills that you can do in full pads. We will have a good chance to see how they respond tomorrow."

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