Tigers Feeling Good as Spring Rolls Along

by - Correspondent -

CLEMSON -- Tommy Bowden came away from his team's third day of spring practice Monday a little relieved the winds calmed down, while his quarterback came away with a little more knowledge of the new offense.

All in all, Clemson's first day in full pads this spring was a successful one.

"It was the first day of one-on-one drills so you are expecting to see some things not go right, but there were a lot of things we did pretty well," said Bowden.

One of things done well was the passing game, where for the first time this spring quarterback Charlie Whitehurst and his receivers weren't fighting the wind. Wind gust near 40 mph dominated the practices last Friday and Saturday, but Monday there was just a small breeze.

"It was a whole lot better," said Whitehurst after coming off the Jervey practice field.

So was Whitehurst understanding of the offense.

"We're learning a bunch," Whitehurst said. "We have a short time to learn as much as we can. So far it's going pretty good, but we still have a long way to go." Whitehurst said he and the receivers are starting to get comfortable with one another in the offense. He said he had to get used to wearing and running around in the pads again, but the timing with the receivers was starting to come along.

"It is always tough the first couple of days in pads," he said. "You get used to being free in your (movement) and then you have to get into the pads and readjust.

"I think for the most part we adjusted pretty well. The biggest thing is just to get better. We are getting a little sharper. They're running better routes and I'm starting to throw good balls." Bowden agreed with his quarterback saying the passing game did look a little better, feeling that the elements around them also contributed to the better performance.

"It was a little bit easier for them to throw and catch today. They looked better, but we saw a lot of people look better on both sides of the ball." Bowden cited several people from Monday's practice, including tight end Bobby Williamson. The rising senior according to Bowden had one substantial catch that went for a long gain.

Though Bowden was pleased with Williamson's work, he didn't give anymore information into how much the tight end will be used in the offense.

"The tight end? Yeah, sure we will use the tight end," he said. "But I'm not going to tell you how or how much...We don't want Texas A&M pulling from your expert evaluation on how we're going to use them.

"We want to have some sort of an element of surprise."

Bowden also cited the play of Tramaine Billie, Nick Watkins and Sergio Gilliam from the defense. He also pointed out that the defense is a little ahead of the offense when it comes to the running game, but he did admit that the play "wasn't physical enough to really get after it." Bowden said his new offensive coordinator Rob Spence haven't worked in the fullbacks just yet, but he plans on getting them more involved in the next
13 practices.

Will Vandervort is the Sports Editor for the Seneca Daily Journal/Clemson Messenger.

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