Highlights From Tommy Bowden Weekly Press Conference
WR Jackie Robinson:
- "Right now the mood of the team is a lot of anger and frustration as far as being disappointed in the way we performed last Thursday. That's to be expected when you go out there and totally embarrass yourselves in front of the whole world. Everyone is really ready to get past the last game and get back out there and play like we are capable of."
- "I think this week will really be the biggest test of this team so far. As far as a leadership standpoint we are going to have to make sure everyone is focused and motivated and not getting down on them selves. Basically this is the week that will test our heart and character."
OL Gary Byrd:
- “I think the mindset is pretty good considering the loss on Thursday. I know everybody knows what we have to do to go out there and get the win on Saturday. I think everybody knows that we have to go out there and have a good week of practice this week and try to go out there and get a W and get this taste out of our mouth.”
- “I don't really know if we are really vulnerable. Everybody knows that we have areas that we need to improve in and I think everybody knows what we have to do to go out there and get those improvements made.”
- “I think every ACC game is a must win game. You're fighting every week to get into a bowl game. You try to fight for an ACC championship . I don't really if we are in that race anymore ,but we're still trying to get into a bowl game.”
OL William Henry:
- “It's kind of mental I guess.Everybody saying we have alot to prove this week. We are coming off of a real bad loss, probably one of the worst in a long time.”
- “We're not focusing on losing. We're focusing on winning every week. There's never a week that we go into a game doubting whether we can win, or what can be the outcome. We're just trying to win, becasue we know we lose again, there's not too much more hope for us as far as the bowl game goes."
- "Personally,I think we will stay with what we have. I don't think anything is too complicated it was just a lot of...for myself, I missed a couple of assignments hat I wouldn't normally miss. Things I 've been doing since I reported."
On Execution last Thursday against N.C. State:
"We had some drops. The biggest problems were short yardage and goal
line. Then we also missed some open receivers. Then, of course, we
had too many turnovers. Those would be the biggest things we've got
to correct to make an improvement. We were open several times
Thursday night and we couldn't' get the ball to them. There was a
15-yard area in the middle of the field open a bunch, and I think we
hit it once. That's something you have to hit."
On Duke's Improved Defense:
"They don't want you to run. They outnumber you and they blitz.
He'll put a lot of pressure on our outside guys (corners and
safeties) to make plays. They make it very difficult to run the
ball. They force you to throw and catch."
On Clemson's Offensive Strategy against Duke:
"We can't turn the ball over. You can't get into predictable
situations. We need to avoid penalties or sacks or anything that can
put you in an obvious passing situation. You don't want to be
one-dimensional. You have to be able to execute your offense against
them. You have to be patient when you throw the ball because they
will drop eight guys into coverage. You're going to have a lot of
time, but the windows are going to be small. You have to be patient
and stay with it. To me, those are the keys to Saturday's game."
On Disappointments so far this season:
"The biggest disappointment over the course of this season would be
offensive execution in the last two weeks, against Wake Forest and
against N.C. State. Statistically, we had made an improvement in so
many areas offensively over the first five games, then we did not
turn the ball over when we beat Wake Forest. Then, all of a sudden,
we kind of went flat. So that would probably be the biggest
disappointment to date."
On Clemson's strong corners (Brian Mance and Justin Miller):
"Both of them have done really well this year, at two different extremes.
You've got one that's a senior (Mance), and then the other is a true
freshman (Miller) that is starting. But both of them have had really
productive years. Their tackling has been good. Both have made big
plays. Justin Miller had as big a hit as we've had in a while on the
goal line the other night against N.C. State. Both of them are good
return people. We'd take a bunch more like them. It's good for Brian
because he's been here a long time. The secondary got a lot of
criticism last year. It's obvious that his confidence is up because
he's a really good player and is showing that the criticism wasn't
On Clemson's Lack of Success at Duke recently:
"It's very difficult to play up there, without a doubt. There
probably will be a small crowd relative to what we have seen the
last two weeks and there and not much noise. You have a hard time
getting the kids' attention before the game and getting them to be
serious. You talk to them all week. When you go out there and take
that 100-yard walk to the field, there's just nobody there. The
environment makes it really difficult. That has more to do with it
On Clemson's Quarterback Situation
"I will watch our quarterbacks (Willie Simmons and Charlie
Whitehurst) in practice this week and evaluate as we go along.
There will be competition. When I decide you will be the first to