News and notes from Wednesday's scrimmage


by - Senior Writer -
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CLEMSON – The Clemson Tigers ran through a situational scrimmage over two hours in Death Valley Wednesday morning and there were several interesting notes to come out of the scrimmage.

Given Clemson’s concerns over the depth on the offensive line, it was interesting to note that Clemson head coach Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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indicated that right tackle Gifford TimothyGifford Timothy
RS So. Offensive Tackle
#70 6-6, 315
Middletown, DE

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might not be able to start in the opener against Auburn.

Timothy suffered a torn meniscus in practice last week, and had surgery at the end of the week repair the tear.

"I don't see him being able to get back in a position where he's ready to start," Swinney said. "I'm hopeful that we can get him ready. He's just missing too much time, but I'm encouraged by where he is right now."

*Center Dalton FreemanDalton Freeman
RS Sr. Offensive Line
#55 6-5, 285
Pelion, SC

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– who has taken snaps at right tackle in Timothy’s absence, took almost all of the snaps at center Wednesday. Freshman Ryan NortonRyan Norton
RS Fr. Offensive Line
#58 6-3, 265
Mauldin, SC

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, who has been taking snaps at center when Freeman moves to tackle, moved over to left guard and worked with the first team, as did David BeasleyDavid Beasley
RS So. Offensive Guard
#68 6-4, 315
Columbus, GA

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. Kalon DavisKalon Davis
RS So. Offensive Guard
#67 6-5, 335
Chester, SC

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worked with the second team.

*Both Joe GoreJoe Gore
RS Fr. Offensive Line
#73 6-6, 260
Lake Waccamaw, NC

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and Shaq AnthonyShaq Anthony
RS So. Offensive Line
#76 6-4, 275
Williamston, SC

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worked at right tackle – neither have played a snap in a college game.

*Defensive coordinator Brent VenablesBrent Venables
Defensive Coordinator / Linebackers
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told the media that freshmen defensive tackles D.J. ReaderD.J. Reader
Fr. Defensive Tackle
#48 6-3, 305
Greensboro, NC

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and Carlos WatkinsCarlos Watkins
Fr. Defensive Tackle
#94 6-4, 275
Forest City, NC

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are beginning to open some eyes. As it stands - DeShawn WilliamsDeShawn Williams
So. Defensive Tackle
#99 6-1, 290
Central, SC

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, Grady JarrettGrady Jarrett
So. Defensive Tackle
#50 6-1, 295
Conyers, GA

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and Josh WatsonJosh Watson
RS So. Defensive Tackle
#91 6-4, 290
Wilmington, DE

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will get the majority of the snaps at the tackle spots, but Venables said he has been pleased with the progress that the two freshmen have shown.

"I think a couple of young defensive tackles,” Venable said. “It's been a pleasant surprise to see where they're at, at this point. They might be able to provide some quality depth there. Obviously, they lack experience. They both have a physical maturity, both can move their feet, use leverage, use their hands well."

*Starting strong safety Rashard HallRashard Hall
Gr. Safety
#31 6-1, 210
St. Augustine, FL

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had three interceptions in the scrimmage, one of which he returned for a touchdown.

*Running back Rod McDowell had touchdown runs of 35 and 65 yards.

*Swinney said that running back Zac BrooksZac Brooks
Fr. Running Back
#24 6-2, 180
Jonesboro, AR

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will probably not redshirt this season. Swinney said that the coaches have to get Brooks ready to play, and that he can probably help out on special teams early on. However, he cautioned that Brooks still has a long way to go – he fumbled during Wednesday’s scrimmage.

*Swinney said that the battle at backup quarterback is still going strong. Chad KellyChad Kelly
Fr. Quarterback
#11 6-3, 210
Buffalo, NY

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, Morgan RobertsMorgan Roberts
RS So. Quarterback
#15 6-2, 200
Charlotte, NC

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and Cole StoudtCole Stoudt
So. Quarterback
#8 6-4, 200
Dublin, OH

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are in a dead heat for the spot. Swinney reiterated that the coaching staff would still find it preferable to redshirt Kelly, but he is making the decision a tough one.

Swinney said that Roberts and Kelly are very similar in that they both love to run the ball, while Stoudt is more of a dropback passer.

*I asked Swinney why we keep hearing the name Stanton SeckingerStanton Seckinger
RS So. Wide Receiver
#81 6-5, 200
Isle of Palms, SC

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whenever the tight ends are mentioned, and Swinney said that Seckinger is “Just a football player.”

*I don’t think I have mentioned him today, so thanks for reminding me,” Swinney said. “He is just a football player. And he is not near as good as he is going to be in four years.”

Seckinger – who came to Clemson as a wide receiver – is still taking some reps at the receiver spot, but his permanent spot will be tight end.


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