Tramaine Billie Impresses Bowden in Fourth Practice


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Clemson, SC-Clemson finally escaped poor weather on Friday and had a
complete, uninterrupted three-hour football practice. Head Coach
Tommy Bowden had originally scheduled a 3:15 PM to 6;15 PM window for
practice on Friday, but after three consecutive days of rain and
lightning he moved the practice to 9:00 AM.

The result was a solid practice in hot, but tolerable weather
conditions. It was a long, hard workout in shoulder pads and helmets
for Bowden's fifth Clemson team. "We had a good hard practice, there
was some spirit out there. They may have been a little tired at the
end, but overall it was a good day.

'The defense is ahead of the offense, at least that was the
case today. I hope the defense can play like that every day. That
is what we want, consistency in that area. J.J. Howard and Khaleed
Vaughn could not be blocked in terms of their pass rush. The
defense forced four turnovers, which is good for the defense and bad
for the offense."


Bowden singled out a couple of freshmen for their play so
far. Tramaine Billie, a running back from Dreher High School in
Columbia, made a big play on defense when he was on the scout team
defense. He is still playing running back, but was on defense
during one of the drills. "Billie has played well, he is an
outstanding athlete. I was so impressed with his play today he
didn't have to do conditioning sprints at the end of practice."


Saturday will be the first day in full pads for the Tigers,
who will practice twice in Monday. "I think the team is anxious to
put go full pads. We will work on a lot of one-on-one drills on
Saturday. We will also work a lot on throwing and catching."


Yusef Kelly has been limited by a pulled groin muscle, but
continues to practice. The only other injury concerned defensive
tackle Todd McClinton. The senior had a feinting episode prior to
practice on Thursday. He missed practice the last two days while he
has undergoes tests. He has had this problem before and had tests
this past summer. He had practiced on Tuesday and Wednesday of this
week.


"Todd had been doing well and was running second team. We certainly
hope to get him back, but his health comes first." Bowden said
defensive linemen Eric Coleman, Trey Tate and Donnell Clark have
taken up the slack on the defensive line as a result of McClinton's
absence.


Clemson will continue its morning practice schedule on Saturday, then
break for Fan Appreciation Day on Sunday. Fans will meet with
players and coaches on the concourse under the South stands at
Memorial Stadium from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM.

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