Youngsters Earn Praise From Bowden Monday

by - Correspondent -

Much has been said and written about the five Clemson freshmen football players who enrolled back in January, led of course by wunderkind quarterback Willy Korn.

But Monday evening, head coach Tommy Bowden singled out another group of true freshmen for their performance early in fall camp.

"Brandon Clear, the young freshman wideout from Hoover has kind of jumped out a little bit," Bowden said following Monday's practice. "Scotty Cooper, Jarvis Jenkins, Marcus Gilchrist...Those guys today kind of jumped off the radar a little bit."

Bowden said Clear is one of the freshmen with an opportunity to work his way onto the depth chart and gain meaningful playing time. His size and range have proven to be positives early on. Clear has also shown himself to be a bit faster than anticipated.

Cooper, meanwhile, showed the ability to "disengage and accelerate" during contact drills.

"He's got a little punch to his hit," Bowden said.

With three practices down out of the five practice acclimation period, the first day of full pads - Wednesday - looms.

But Bowden said he did get the sense that his team was overly excited about the possibility of getting to start hitting for real.

"Yes and no. Practices are so long and so hot they aren't real eager to put more pads on," he said. "I think (Wednesday) will be kind of exciting because were only going two hours because of finals...We won't be out here long at all. So there will be some enthusiasm, both because of full pads and because of short practice time."

Clemson's first two-a-day practice is scheduled for Thursday. After that, Bowden said he would evaluate whether or not the team would hold further twice-daily practices.

The Tigers' single practice on Tuesday begins at 4:30 p.m. and, as always, is closed to the public.

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