No Bye Week? No Problem

by - Correspondent -

CLEMSON - Tommy Bowden is an avid runner, so marathons don't bother him at all.

His No. 5 Clemson Tigers will play their seventh consecutive game without a bye week when Maryland comes calling on Homecoming Saturday, with three more games to come afterwards before a blessed open date comes after CU visits Florida State on Nov. 4.

The last time Bowden went through such an ordeal? A 10-1 season while serving as an assistant coach at Alabama.

"I've been around where (no off week) works good, and it's been bad," Bowden said after his team's Thursday evening practice session. "But it's been a good experience so far. You get on a roll, in a rhythm. The travel is the same. As long as you don't have injuries, and we haven't had any substantial injuries. So, it's been pretty good."

Just in case there are any superstitious Clemson fans out there, that 10-1 Crimson Tide team won its first 10 football games, only to lose to archrival Auburn in the season's final week.

Injury Update: Defensive tackle Terry Bryant, who suffered a pulled calf muscle in Clemson's 34-27 win over N.C. State last weekend, will suit up for the Maryland game but will not start, according to defensive coordinator Reggie Herring. Backup Bryant McNeal will get the starting nod in place of Bryant.

Game-time decision: Bowden will not name his starting placekicker until right before kickoff. The decision will be made after observing both Aaron Hunt and Tony Lazzara in pregame warmups, at which time Bowden said, "we'll go with the hot guy".

A soldout Homecoming: Saturday's game with the Maryland Terrapins is officially a sellout. A crowd of 85,000 - which would be the year's largest to date - is expected to file into Memorial Stadium for Homecoming 2000.

"That's good," Bowden said when told by a reporter of the expected attendance. "I hope they're loud."

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