Tigers Look To Bounce Back Against Elon
Clemson will take on Elon Friday night at 7 pm in Littlejohn Coliseum. The Tigers are coming off their first loss of the season Wednesday night at Georgia. This will also be the Tigers’ second game without forward James Mays.
Mays was declared academically ineligible for the remainder of this season. It was a big blow to a group that already lacked depth in the front court. Mays was also the point man in Clemson’s full court press. This will be an important game for the Tigers as they prepare to open ACC play Wednesday night at 7 pm against Florida State.
While the Tigers are still looking to find some one to pick up the slack rebounding, freshman KC Rivers showed he can pick up his scoring. Rivers had a season high 14 points against Georgia. Rivers was known for his perimeter shooting coming out of high school, but he has shown the ability to put the ball on the floor this season. Rivers will need to continue to improve putting the ball on the floor and drawing contact to get to the free throw line.
The problem replacing Mays may come on the boards. Mays was Clemson leading rebounder a 7.6 rebounds per game. Senior Steve Allen and freshman Julius Powell will be called upon to up their level of play. Powell has shown he can be a good scorer for the Tigers, but the coaching staff will continue to work with Powell on his aggressiveness inside. Allen gives good effort, but he still lacks the footwork to be effective inside. Coach Purnell could look to get freshman Raymond Sykes more involved.
Do not be surprised if Sykes sees his most minutes of the season against Elon tonight. It is important to get Sykes experience and for the coaching staff to know what he can give them in a game situation. Sykes needed more time, but he may be forced into action during ACC play.
Elon has only won two games coming into tonight’s match up, so Coach Purnell should have the opportunity to experiment with some different line ups.