Talented Trio: Feaster, Powell and Overton shine Saturday
|Saturday, September 17, 2016, 5:16 PM- -|
CLEMSON – The future for Clemson is bright, and its youngest stars were on display Saturday afternoon.
After the Tigers jumped out to a 21-0 lead over South Carolina State, head coach Dabo Swinney started giving some of his younger players their first extensive look at college football.
Tavien Feaster, Cornell Powell and Diondre Overton each played a role in Clemson’s 59-0 dismantling of in-state FCS foe South Carolina State, but it was Overton that got the younger Tigers in the act first.
Overton caught a 45-yard pass from quarterback Nick Schuessler and outraced the defensive back to the endzone, and he said after the game that it seemed like the play took an extremely long time to develop.
“It was just a really good play call by the head coach and the offensive coordinator,” Overton told the media after the game. “I just did my job and executed the play. It was just a matter of speed and working technique and doing what I was supposed to do. It seemed like it took forever. I was nervous going up to the line. I knew it was coming to me and I just did my stuff. It's a blessing and I give all of the thanks to God above.”
As excited as Overton was, his teammate and childhood friend Powell may have been equally or more excited when he notched his first career catch and score.
“I was just as excited for him as if I caught the ball,” Powell said of Overton’s touchdown. “That's my boy. I'm going to support him as much as I can.”
Feaster – the speedy running back from Spartanburg – played early and often and ended the day as Clemson’s leading rusher with 12 carries for 83 yards and a touchdown.
Playing behind four seasoned players, Feaster has had to wait his turn, but he said he’s determined to make the most of every opportunity.
“It was great. It humbled me and made me realize that I had to work for everything and I'm not going to be given anything,” Feaster said, “I just tried to make the most of it when I got my opportunity. Not playing the first two games, they kept telling me I was going to get my shot Saturday. When I got in there I tried to roll every time I got the ball. It was just go time.”
However, his first time into the endzone as a Clemson Tiger was well worth the wait.
“It was great,” Feaster said of his first career touchdown. “I was just processing it and I was like, 'Gah, this feels great,' and then Christian Wilkins came over there and started hitting me in the head and telling me good job and I knew it was real right then. It was great. That was bigger than any high school touchdown to me. I feel like there's going to be plenty more.”
All of the freshmen – and the 92 players who saw game action – gained valuable experience, but Powell said this one is over and it’s time to look ahead to the Thursday night showdown with Georgia Tech.
“It was a great feeling going out there, running down the hill and playing for Clemson,” Powell said. “We're happy with the outcome and we've got things back on track and back rolling. We've got a short turnaround but we're going to be prepared Thursday. I did some good things out there, but I can definitely improve a lot. I'm still learning and still growing, so I'm ready to come back tomorrow and look at the film and get ready for Thursday.”