Shaq Lawson doing his part in making Mitch Hyatt better


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Hyatt and Lawson have been battling since the spring
Hyatt and Lawson have been battling since the spring

CLEMSON – Shaq LawsonShaq Lawson
Jr. Defensive End
#90 6-3, 269
Central, SC

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is doing everything he can to make Mitch HyattMitch Hyatt
Fr. Offensive Line
#75 6-6, 270
Sugar Hill, GA

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a better football player.

Coming out of the spring, New York native Isaiah BattleIsaiah Battle
Offensive Tackle (2012 - 2014)
#79 6-7, 290
Brooklyn, NY

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was projected to be the starting left tackle, and the hope was that freshman Mitch Hyatt could gain valuable snaps – and time – while not having to face the pressures of being a starter. That all changed when Battle, starting a family and dealing with personal issues, decided to declare for July’s NFL Supplemental Draft.

Battle was picked by the Rams in the draft and he is playing catch-up to the rest of the offensive linemen in the St. Louis camp. Back in Clemson, however, Hyatt is going through a crash course as he prepares for the rigors of protecting quarterback Deshaun WatsonDeshaun Watson
So. Quarterback
#4 6-2, 205
Gainesville, GA

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’s blindside just eight months after playing in high school all-star games.

It’s a daunting challenge, but defensive end Shaq Lawson is doing everything he can to help get Hyatt ready, and he told TigerNet Monday that Hyatt won’t face a better player this season.

“I told him day one that we are trying to make each other better,” Lawson said after Monday’s practice. “It's my job to get you better and get you right. He probably won't face anybody as good as me on another team, so I just talk to him every day. We talk and try to just get each other better. He also makes me better. I actually learn a lot from Mitch, too.”

Lawson then gave his own scouting report on what he sees out of Hyatt every day in practice.

“He doesn't look like a freshman. He looks like a grown man,” Lawson said. “He has matured a lot since the spring and gotten a lot stronger. He is fast, too. He is a great pass protector. He is good at run blocking. He just has to keep getting better every day, and he is going to be a great player at Clemson.”

Lawson also helps Hyatt prepare for what he will see in September and beyond by talking. A lot.

“I push his buttons and try to get in his head a little bit to see how he will react. I talk a lot,” Lawson said with a laugh. “He responds to it pretty good. Some days he will beat me and some days I will beat him. We just make each other better.”

Hyatt hasn’t been shy about getting into a scuffle here and there, and Lawson said he loves to see an offensive linemen with the fire to compete.

“I like to see that. You know there is toughness about that young boy, and he is ready at any time,” he said. “You gotta have a dog in the trenches with us, and I like to see that.”

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