Watkins makes 2012 debut, ready for next step against Seminoles

by - Staff Writer -

CLEMSON- Sammy WatkinsSammy Watkins
So. Wide Receiver
#2 6-1, 205
Fort Myers, FL

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made his first game day appearance of the season Saturday against Furman, but the real Sammy Watkins probably won’t emerge until the Tigers take the field in Tallahassee next weekend.

Watkins made his first start of the season in Saturday’s 41-7 victory over Furman, and in typical Sammy fashion, it was a record-setting day.

After sitting for nearly seven minutes while the Furman offense controlled the clock, Watkins took the field for the first time in 2012 and making his presence known by catching four passes for 52 yards and recording the first rushing touchdown of his career on a 58-yard run.

Saturday may have seemed like an ordinary day for the sophomore, but Watkins said that it was only the beginning.

“The coaches just wanted to get me a couple of quick touches and get me back into game speed,” Watkins said after Saturday’s game. “They wanted me to go out and run some plays. It was actually exactly what I wanted to run. I was just keeping it natural, letting the game flow and come to me. We wanted to have fun.”

Watkins said that he wasn’t quite back to where he was a year ago, but the first game jitters will be gone when the Tigers face Florida State next Saturday.

“I was happy just to go out there,” Watkins said. “I wasn’t too happy or too excited. I just went out and played my game. There were most definitely some first game nerves. When you get on the bus to run down the Hill, there are a few nerves, but once you get hit a couple of times, you are fine. I wasn’t moving as fast as I was last year, but a lot of that was first game jitters. I’m pretty sure that at Florida State, I’ll be moving pretty quickly.”

Offensive coordinator Chad MorrisChad Morris
Offensive Coordinator / QBs
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told me after the game that he has used less than 50-percent of his playbook during the first three weeks of the season, and Watkins seemed to agree, saying that fans will see the Tigers run a lot of plays and play at a high level against Florida St.

“I’m pretty sure we are going to go out at Florida State and play hard,” Watkins said. “We are going to run a lot of stuff and just execute.”

According to Watkins, if the Tigers are to have a chance against the Noles, they must be more consistent at every position.

“We just need to be more consistent and do our jobs,” Watkins said. “We need to keep drives going and just help the guys instead of pulling off. The receiving corps needs to block more on the edge. Tajh needs to make more consistent reads. The running backs need to go harder. If we all do that, we will be a more consistent team.”

The trip to Tallahassee and playing in front of a national audience will be nothing more than a business trip for Watkins.

“You just have to treat it as a business trip like I do every week,” Watkins said. “I prepared this week and I’ll prepare the same next week. I might practice a little harder.”

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