1) No Injuries – The Temple game is a game where the Tigers are expected to win comfortably, and it is a game where you would hate to lose a player to injury. You cannot go out there and play scared, but this is a game where you are really crossing your fingers to not lose a player to injury. The Tigers have already suffered three major injuries on offense (Cole Downer, Kelvin Grant, and James Davis).
2) Strike Early – Last year the Tigers were only up 7-0 on Utah State at halftime. There is no need to allow Temple to hang around and build confidence. Temple has upset major programs and the past and Clemson is certainly not invincible. Clemson needs to have a sense of urgency from the opening kickoff.
3) Improvement on Special Teams – The punting game has to improve. Cole Chason needs to rise from the cellar of the ACC, and the protection needs to hold up better. Clemson will not be able to survive giving up a blocked punt each week. The move of Aaron Kelly and Tyler Grisham to kickoff return should help. Both are capable returners, and both are better blockers than anyone previously used this season. Grisham was a guy we had hinted all year may get a crack.
4) Move The Ball On The Ground – Reggie Merriweather will need to find his rhythm again. Merriweather has been the starter the last two games, so that will not be any different. Merriweather did not appear to have his rhythm when he came in for James Davis against NC State. Merriweather needs to lead the way, and Kyle Browning just needs to remain Mr. Dependable. In Browning’s career, he has done everything asked of him, and it would not be a surprise to see him deliver again.
5) Ignore The Fans And The Media Hype – Coach Bowden has done a good job of playing up Temple. In reality, Temple is horrible, but that is not the mindset the players need to have on Saturday. Tye Hill said on Tuesday we need to play like its Miami, but actions speak louder than words. The Tigers need a big win to keep momentum going into Georgia Tech. This is a game where Clemson can play bad and win, but that statement solidifies my point, ignore the fans and media hype.