Tajh Boyd back at QB, Clemson's slide and Wakeyleaks


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Swinney talks to the media Friday afternoon
Swinney talks to the media Friday afternoon

CLEMSON – The Clemson football team had a special guest playing the part of Ohio St. quarterback J.T. Barrett during Friday’s practice, and to nobody’s surprise he got knocked around a little bit.

Former Tiger quarterback Tajh Boyd joined Friday’s practice as the Tigers continue bowl prep for the College Football Playoff’s Fiesta Bowl on New Year’s Eve, and Boyd was able to help simulate the physical presence Barrett brings to the table.

He also brings a different edge to practice.

“He did a good job. It's a little different edge when he shows up,” head coach Dabo Swinney said after practice. “He hasn't practiced with us since the Florida State game, but we coaxed him out here. He's got a lot going on. He's in the Nutcracker this weekend, so please somebody get some video of that. I need video evidence of that at the Peace Center. He's like legit in it. He's got the tux with the top hat. He brought a good energy out here today. Oh yeah, he's in play. Absolutely. We bounced him around a little bit.”

Swinney said the Tigers are right where they need to be as they prepare for the 11-1 and third-ranked Buckeyes.

“It was good. We're getting there. Not ready yet. We've still got 15 days, but we're starting to kind of make the turn we need to make,” he said. “There's always a little bit of a process that you go through once you get them back and get started. We've got a plan that we believe in, and this is the part that I like. We're getting to the point that we're grinding it up pretty good. Today was a really good day. Tomorrow is going to be another one and then have meetings on Sunday for just a mental day. Next week, we'll really turn the page to more game prep and kind of change it up. It's been really good. Guys are locked in and preparing. We're not on the field long, but we're trying to be really efficient and have good energy when we are here.”

On Christian Wilkins’ cast

“Just protecting it. That's just a precaution.”

On Wakeyleaks

“Nothing shocks me. I've been doing this a long time. I've seen it all. I've seen spies at practice. I've seen it all. I've seen people parked in parking decks. I've seen it all, heard it all, so nothing really surprises me. That's a shame. You want to feel like everybody within your group is for you and not trying to hurt you. It's one thing as coaches we all pick up the phone and call people that we know. You call somebody and say, 'Hey, we're playing this team. What did you think about them? Is that guy a good player? Was he as fast as you thought?' You're always looking for every little scouting edge that you can get when you're preparing but to get the plays from the camp; that's a little different deal.

*Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich re-affirmed to TigerNet after practice that Clemson is not involved in the investigation in any way.

NFL paperwork for juniors

“We haven't turned any paperwork into the NFL. They're just getting their diplomas; that's it. We're just locked in on playing the game. We haven't submitted any paperwork or anything like that. These guys know what they're going to do.”

Has the football operations center made a difference in recruiting?

“Not near as much as it's going to be when we move in it. That's when I think it will take off. It's definitely made a difference because when guys have come here over the last two years, we've been able to show a plan and then the process of it getting built. We've had opportunities to walk a lot of people through it. It's amazing. It's an amazing facility, and our guys are going to love. They're going to be there all of the time, and they're going to absolutely love it, and they're going to be competing. There's going to be competition going on in that building every day, all day, whether it's putt-putt or bocce ball or shooting hoops. Whatever it is, they're competing, and I love that. There are a washer and dryer, and they're going to be competing to see who can get the washer and dryer time too. It's good.

Will you be the first person down the slide?

“I think that's already happened. I'm not real sure. They say it's fast, though. I still haven't been over there since they put it in. I'm going to try to take the team through there on Tuesday before we get out of here on Wednesday so they can see it because they haven't been through it either. I hear it's fast, which is good. We'll have to get us a good landing pad.”


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