Tigers Begin Work on Florida Atlantic


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After practice audio from Tommy Bowden: Windows Media



CLEMSON -- Taking over a program from a recently fired coach is a challenge Tommy Bowden has undertaken twice in his career. But building one from scratch?


For Bowden, that's hard to fathom.


"I imagine it would be hard. You go there and there's probably very little equipment. Your budget's restricted, your staff is restricted and your facilities are restricted," he said. "I've never been in that environment, but reading (about) people that have there are a lot of headaches."


Yet that's exactly what Howard Schnellenberger is doing at Florida Atlantic.


The legendary coach who won a national championship at Miami in the early 1980s has come full circle. And on Sept. 2, his Owls swoop into Death Valley to open the 2006 college football season.


For Bowden, Schnellenberger is another of the veteran coaches he has watched with great interest.


"When I was at Florida State as a young (graduate assistant) he was at Miami. He had just won a national championship and turned that program around," said Bowden. "He was a two-back, split-back (offense), while my father was a two-back, I-back. They always played and competed, good games. So yeah, I studied him as a young coach."


And what made Schnellenberger's Hurricane teams so good?


"He won," Bowden said with a laugh.


"They were real fundamentally sound. They ran the same thing over and over and over and over. You knew what was coming. They had good players and just out-executed you."


Bowden's comments came after the Tigers wrapped up a three-hour practice Thursday afternoon.


After three weeks of installing aspects of the offense and defense, learning proper technique, conditioning and scrimmaging, the time has finally come to begin zeroing in on Florida Atlantic. Bowden said almost the entire workout Thursday was against scout teams playing the Owls.


"About a three-hour practice. Long, hard, full pads. We divided up the scout teams and went against Florida Atlantic. The whole day was (preparing for) Florida Atlantic. We did a little bit against our defense for a fastball look, but the rest of it was Florida Atlantic work."


Clemson will hold the annual Beanie Bowl Friday in Death Valley, a full-scale dress rehearsal for game day. The team will take Saturday and Sunday off, then resume preparation for the Owls on Monday


NOTES

- Nelson Faerber, a junior wide receiver from Duluth, Ga., was placed on scholarship Thursday;


- Redshirt sophomore linebacker Adrian Kindred (Opelika, Ala.) has left the team and decided to transfer. His destination is not known at this time.

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