Morris and the offense putting the fun back in football at Clemson

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CLEMSON – Dalton FreemanDalton Freeman
RS Jr. Offensive Line
#55 6-5, 285
Pelion, SC

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says offensive coordinator Chad Morris is making football fun again.

Most Clemson fans would have to agree.

The Tigers knocked off No. 11 Florida St. on Saturday, ringing up over 450 yards of total offense on the nation’s fifth-ranked defense, and Clemson is now 13th in the nation in total offense. The Tigers ran 86 plays against the Noles, the second straight week they have run 85-plus plays against a ranked opponent, and much of the credit for a 4-0 start has to sit squarely on the shoulders of the offense.

Fun stuff, according to Freeman.

“Coach Morris always puts us in the best position to win. He is a genius,” Freeman said. “He mixes it up so much. I’m just so proud of him coming in to Clemson from Tulsa and making that transition without missing a beat. He has done a great job. He is really making football fun again.”

Morris said that he can't wait to see what his offense looks like as the season progresses.

"I'm super excited about how our players keep growing this offense and executing. And we're only four games into this offense," Morris said. "It's crazy."

Some of the numbers are already staggering – Clemson is averaging 37.8 points per game; freshman receiver Sammy WatkinsSammy Watkins
Fr. Wide Receiver
#7 6-1, 200
Fort Myers, FL

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has 433 receiving yards in just four games, 421 yards off the ACC freshman record of 853 set by N.C. State’s Koren Robinson in 1999; Watkins has 29 receptions, and the ACC record for a freshman is 58 set by Virginia’s Wali Lundy in 2002; the ACC record for touchdown receptions by a freshman is 11, set by Virginia’s Heath Miller in 2002, and Watkins already has six; the season ACC touchdown reception mark is 17; and Tajh BoydTajh Boyd
RS So. Quarterback
#10 6-1, 225
Hampton, VA

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already has 13 touchdown passes, and the Clemson record for a season is Cullen Harper’s 27.

Morris, however, said his offense hasn’t yet to tap its potential.

"We've got a lot more we can exploit,” Morris said. “But we have to get good at what we're doing. We feed off of each other. Our defensive guys talk to our offensive guys and our offensive guys talk to our defensive guys. You're seeing confidence in our guys. Very few groups of men get that word team attached to them and what a team truly is. But these guys have got it. They work with each other. I'm excited about where we are."

Morris even made it sound like facing the Noles’ defense was just another day at the office.

“They're very talented. Lots of 5-star athletes and they're well-coached,” he said. “But our guys aren't going to back down. We're going to keep battling, scratching and clawing. I'm super proud of our guys and the way they've continued to battle. “

Freeman said there is one key for the Clemson offense as they head into a tough atmosphere in Blacksburg, Virginia, next week and the rest of the season.

“Stay humble. This has been a Clemson program that has been very inconsistent in the past and now that we are starting to have some success, we have to learn how to handle it,” Freeman said. “There is so much stuff left out on the field. We are nowhere near being able to say that we are the best that we can be because there is so much left out there. We have to stay humble. It’s going to be a tough test going up to Blacksburg.

“It’s awesome, especially knowing that we left so much out there- the 4th-and-1. There was a 3rd-and-1 and some dropped balls. We really shouldn’t ever put our defense in that tough of a position, but we are going to be able to go in and correct some mistakes. In years past, we haven’t been able to correct mistakes, but these are all correctable things. That’s a big positive for us. “

The Tigers have eight games remaining, and like his coach, Freeman is excited about the possibilities.

“We are a group that really believes that we can be special,” he said. “I don’t think that there’s anyone on this team that is complacent. We are continuously out there trying to get better. Coach Morris gives us a great chance to win a lot of ball games and be successful. You have to give a lot of credit to him. “

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