Tigers' Role Reversed Vs. Terps
CLEMSON - In the span of one week Clemson has gone from the hunter to the hunted.
That's the message head coach Tommy Bowden is drilling into his team this week as the 25th-ranked Tigers (1-0) prepare for Saturday's game at Maryland (Noon, ESPN). Such is life when you knock off a ranked team on national television, then 48 hours later find yourself in the AP Poll.
"The mental aspect is totally different," Bowden said. "Last week we hadn't played any games and were going against a nationally-ranked team. Now it's completely the opposite...Now the bullseye is on us. The bullseye was on A&M, now it's on us.
"Maryland's unranked, and we are (ranked). They want what we've got...It's a completely different scenario, so the mental approach is completely different than last week."
While Clemson was defeating the Aggies 25-24 behind six Jad Dean field goals, the Terrapins (1-0) were rallying to defeat Navy, 23-20.
The Tigers won last year's game in Death Valley, 10-7, snapping a three-game losing streak to Maryland in the Ralph Friedgen era. Clemson won despite not being able to establish a consistent running attack, which caused the Terps to totally change their defensive scheme.
"They played a lot of man-to-man last year up until our game, then played us zone," Bowden said. "That's probably because we couldn't run the ball...If you don't have a good running game, you don't have to play man. When you can't defend the run with equal numbers, you have to get another guy up there unblocked. (Maryland) didn't have to do that."
Defensive lineman Trey Tate (pulled groin) did not practice Tuesday or Wednesday and likely is out for Saturday's game.
Cory Groover, Dorrell Scott, Jock McKissic and Rashaad Jackson are among the candidates to fill his spot.