Thursday's Clemson Football practice report

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Dabo Swinney after practice audio

CLEMSON – Clemson head coach Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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met with the media following Thursday’s night practice and he said he expects a “tough” matchup Saturday against North Carolina.

“It will be a tough, hard-fought game,” Swinney said. “They are a complete team, capable of beating you offensively, defensively and in the kicking game. But so are we, so it will be a good matchup. Really, at this point, it is just about Clemson. We have to take care of business and prepare. We have got less than 48 hours till we kickoff, and we have to start preparing right now. That is what it is going to take. We have to take care of the ball and do the things we have done all year. We have to try to create some turnovers - we have to get back into that ballgame. That game last week is the first one where we have lost the turnover margin. You can tell them the stove is hot, but they’ve touched and now they have a scar but they lived through it. It almost cost us.”


“They are built to be ball-control type of team. They have a good running game, run play-action, play good defense and have a good kicking game. You look up and they have beat you 24-21. That is how they are built. We have to stop their running game, and make them do the things they don’t really want to do. We have to make that quarterback beat us throwing the ball more than they want, rather than throwing it when they want to. We have to stop them from running – if we can't stop the running game it could be a tough night for us. We have to be patient – they are a tough team to run the football on. We have to take advantage of the opportunities as they present themselves.”

On Chandler CatanzaroChandler Catanzaro
RS So. Punter / Kicker
#39 6-2, 200
Greenville, SC

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“At some point last year, when it was as bad as it can be, I told you I felt like he would be one of the most consistent kickers ever to come through here. I know that was a pretty bold statement at the time, but the reason I said that is I believe it. I know y’all think I say things sometimes just to be saying them, but I knew he was gonna be good. He was a freshman but he was just made of the right things and he would get better. There is no magic wand; he is just a guy that has a lot of pride and works hard and now that is translating onto the game field.”

On being a traditionalist as far as BCS is concerned

“I have always said I would be in favor for the system that we have, making the bowls be done by January 2nd, and having one more game. That, to me, really gives you the best of both worlds. You're not usually arguing about eight teams. It's usually pretty obvious - there are three or four teams you are really talking about that when it gets to the end that maybe have a case. I've been for that and would be for that. As far as just doing away with the bowl system and all that, I'd be against that.”

On Tig Willard’s backup after injury to Tony Steward

“We would probably, right now after Tig, would probably move Corico [Hawkins] or Quandon [Christian]. We've got Justin [Parker], who gives us some more options at SAM. Justin would have a hard time moving to WILL, because he really hasn't repped that. Quandon has a little better understanding of the big picture, and could easily play over there. Same thing with Corico. Corico could go play it, no problem. Daniel Andrews is a guy that knows every position, and could get us through a game as well.

On Justin Parker’s health

“He's good. Everybody is ready. I was worried about him during the early part of the week. He practiced yesterday and today, so he's going to be good to go. “

On Mike Bellamy

“He is here and had a great week of practice. He's eligible to play all four quarters, if we so choose to play him. Absolutely no issues, but we've still got less than 48 hours to go. As we stand right now, he is ready to go.”

On Tony Steward

“We will probably hold off on the surgery until after the bye week – let him go home and then do it after that. We haven’t heard on the medical waiver – we are one play [at Maryland] over the 20 percent, but hopefully this works out for us and him. He can be here four or five years instead of three or four.”

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