Watkins focused on ACC Championship


by - Senior Writer -
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CLEMSON – Tiger wide receiver Sammy WatkinsSammy Watkins
Fr. Wide Receiver
#2 6-1, 200
Fort Myers, FL

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won the ACC Rookie of the Year Award Tuesday, and he said Tuesday evening following Clemson’s practice that he was proud of the award, but had more important things on his mind.

"My coach told me about it today,” Watkins said. “It's an honor, but we have the ACC Championship to practice for. We still have a championship to play for, so that's our focus now."

Watkins had 43 of the 45 votes in becoming Clemson’s first ACC Rookie of the Year since James DavisJames Davis
Running Back
# 6-0, 205
Atlanta, GA

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in 2005. For the season, he has 72 receptions for 1073 yards and 10 receiving touchdowns. He leads all freshmen receivers nationally in receptions, yards and touchdowns and his figures are also all-time ACC records for freshmen.

Additionally, Watkins has 1920 all-purpose yards and his 174 yards per game ranks fourth nationally, first among all freshmen and best in ACC history among frosh.

He said all of that was possible because of his approach to the game.

"I think it's how I come out and it's my approach to the game,” he said. “It’s how I study it. I think some people feed off of me. I think it inspires them to work hard. That's in practice, the weight room."

Watkins admitted that his shoulder was still bothering him last weekend in Columbia, but hopes to be closer to 100 percent this Saturday.

"My shoulder is in good condition now. I just have to keep getting treatment,” he said. “I'll be okay this weekend. I'll lay everything on the line and just have fun."

He said that teams have been paying more attention to him now than they did earlier in the year.

“I'm getting a lot of deep coverage,” he said. “I just go to the coach, tell him what's open and then I go back out. There are so many things we can do in this offense and so many players on the team who can do a lot of good things. I love this scheme. There are many ways to get the ball. There are a lot of plays that are designed for you, as well. It's a great, all-around offense. We just have to listen to what our coaches are saying."

He said he thinks the offense will put up better numbers this week.

“We're just not executing as a team,” he said. “We're a little hesitant and we've lost some confidence, but we're going to go out this weekend, lay it on the line and try to play like we were earlier in the year."

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