Injured Starters Closer to Returning
CLEMSON - With a must-win game vs. Maryland on the agenda this weekend, Clemson appears to be getting closer and closer to full strength.
The arm injury which forced tight end Ben Hall from last Saturday's game with Utah State was minor, and Hall has been practicing full strength so far this week. Wide receiver Chasi Stuckey's (hamstring) status is less certain, but head coach Tommy Bowden said the sophomore "looked a little better" during Wednesday's practice.
Officially, Stuckey remains listed as questionable for Saturday's noon kickoff with the Terps.
The news wasn't as good for true freshman center Bobby Hutchinson.
Hutchinson, who was carted off the practice field Tuesday after injuring his knee, has been diagnosed with a a dislocated kneecap, according to Sports Information Director Tim Bourret. It appears he will have surgery on the knee Monday.
His ability to return to the field in time for spring practice next April isn't known at this time.
Bowden, on his team's mood heading into Saturday's game with Maryland:
"I hope we play with a sense of urgency every game," he said. "The players know that we haven't beaten Maryland in three years. We're going to focus on the fact we played better last week and try and go from there."
Maryland head coach Ralph Friedgen, on the possibility of starting true freshman quarterback Jordan Steffy vs. the Tigers:
"If I thought he could handle it and we could win the game, I'd do it in a heartbeat," he said. "He's getting close, he really is. I thought he had an excellent practice last night. I think it's getting closer. I'm not saying that won't happen this week."