Tommy Bowden Weekly Press Conference

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Tommy Bowden Press Conference, Windows Media, (35:55)

Q: On the progress of Clemson’s special teams.

A: “In four games, we’ve been the most consistent since I have been here. Andre
(Powell) has brought some things to the table. He has brought new ideas from how to
practice with special teams. We are still spending 15 to 20 minutes. He’s helped out in
meetings. We have special teams meetings every day. It is more coordinated and
organized from a meeting standpoint. We’ve always tried to put the best players out
there. We’ve never had a problem putting the best players on the field, but he (Powell)
has brought something new to the table. When Powell first took the job, he came and
asked to coach special teams. I’ve never had anyone ask. He’s had experience, and
making him the special teams coordinator has paid off.”

Q: On quarterback Cullen Harper as compared to this time last year.

A: “Going into last week’s game, he was ahead of schedule in passing efficiency. His
yards per attempt are higher this year and his completion percentage is higher. He is
behind in terms of interceptions and touchdowns. His touchdowns are down, but our
rushing touchdowns as a team are up, so that is part of it. We are scoring as many
touchdowns per game as we did last year, we just getting more rushing touchdowns this
year. I don’t really see much of a difference. He has a chance to have a really good year.
I’m not happy with four interceptions, but I’m confident that what I see on the tape is

Q: On offensive lineman David Smith.

A: “He probably played his best game against South Carolina State. His footwork,
confidence in where he is going, and his technique has improved. It’s the same thing
with Mason Cloy. I hate that David got hurt, because from a technique, assignment, and
lack of hesitation standpoint, it was by far his best game.”

Q: On Clemson playing tougher.

A: “There is some toughness involved in a shutout (54-0 vs. S.C. State) defensively. We
can still play a lot better. Last year, we played really good games against Wake Forest,
Florida State, Maryland, and N.C. State. We haven’t played one of those yet. It may be
because we had some injuries and we’re playing young guys. It’s a difficult situation.
They are getting better. I’ve been pleased with the technique.”

Q: On being ranked in the top 20.

A: “I’m glad N.C. State won because they look better than what we gave them credit for.
It looks like Alabama is better than what we gave them credit for before the season.
Both of those teams will win a lot of games. The reasons that teams play Division I-AA
schools are to play young guys, improve techniques, and get some other guys playing
time. By playing the I-AA, we got some good out of it. Whoever voted us into the poll
realizes that a lot of schools have good teams now even at the I-AA level, and they’re
starting to give those coaches and players credit. “

Q: On playing Maryland.

A: “Maryland starts 15 seniors. We’re going to start 10. They have a bunch of players
who have come in here and been successful (13-12 win in 2006). Intimidation won’t be a
factor for them. This team will bring a lot of confidence. This is their first conference
game. We’ll see if our players our ready to respond.”

Q: On wide receiver Jacoby Ford.

A: “In the last two games, he has had 11 catches. He has really good hands. We’ve
always trusted him as a receiver. He’s one of the fastest guys in college football. He has
more catches now then he has ever had in a season.”

Q: Is it a difficult transition from an FCS team to a conference game?

A: “Not really. The biggest thing about playing a I-AA team is motivation. Motivation
will be easier versus Maryland. To me, that is really the only transition.”

Q: On Maryland’s defense.

A: “They complicate blocking schemes. They have eight seniors on defense. If we can’t
slow them down, it will be a long day.”

Q: On Maryland’s quarterback Chris Turner and wide receiver Darrius Heyward-

A: “Some scouts think that he is the top receiver in the conference. Their quarterback
hasn’t started very many games, but he is a really talented player. They also have the
leading rusher in the ACC in Scott.”

RB C.J. Spiller, Windows Media, (3:50)

QB Cullen Harper, Windows Media, (3:35)

WR Jacoby Ford, Windows Media, (5:04)

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