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Why U should fear Clemson

The Clemson Tigers don't have a shiny BCS ranking, a sparkling record or even a road win yet this season. But here's why the Tigers (3-3, 2-2 ACC) could end up derailing the 10th-ranked Canes (5-1, 2-1) when they resume ACC play this Saturday at 3:30 at Land Shark Stadium:

In a nutshell, Clemson has a pair of home run threats on offense and special teams in running back CJ Spiller and receiver Jacoby Ford. And their defense is much better than advertised.

CJ Spiller > Clemson has given up 92 points in six games – a 15.5 points per game average that ranks 17th in the nation and second fewest in the ACC. But those stats are a little misleading. Clemson's offense and special teams have given up six touchdowns. Take away those 36 points and the defense is really only giving up 11.3 points per game. Only the No. 1-ranked Gators, Penn State and Oklahoma are stingier on defense.

> The Tigers secondary ranks seventh in pass defense (yards allowed), 17th in pass efficiency defense and is littered with theives. Defensive backs Chris Chancellor, Crezdon Butler and DeAndre McDaniel have a combined 27 career interceptions and rank in the top 6 among active career leaders in the ACC. Both on the Chancellor and Butler are on the Thorpe Award Watch list with nine and 10 career interceptions respectively. McDaniel leads the nation in interceptions with five.The Tigers held Georgia Tech and Boston College to under 30 percent completion percentage in consecutive games.

> C.J. Spiller and Jacoby Ford are the top kick return duo in the nation. They have a combined nine returns for scores. Spiller has 17 career touchdowns of 50 yards or more and Ford has eight. "This week we have to focus on the fundamentals, have fun, do our job and stop him," defensive tackle Joe Joseph said of Spiller. "He’s a very explosive running back, fast, world class speed. He’s a real good talent. We have to get there, gang tackle him and wrap up and swarm to the ball."

This isn't to say the Tigers don't have their faults. Offensively, beyond Spiller and Ford, there hasn't been much consistency. But consider the Canes well aware of what the Tigers do well and ready and focused for Saturday.

> FIRST DOWN IMPORTANT FOR CANES: UM coach Randy Shannon said avoiding third and long situations against the Tigers will be of vital importance. "When you watch them on film, they cause havoc. They can get you in third and long. First down is going to be very big for us. We have to control our penalties. Those are the biggest things we have to get done. In second and six we can't have a holding, a false start. We have to be sound and secure in doing the things we need to get done."

> PREPARING FOR SAPP, BOWERS: A big part of staying out of third and long will be avoiding the pressure created by end Rick Sapp and Da'Quan Bowers. Last week, UM quarterback Jacory Harris was sacked six times by UCF. Harris compared Sapp and Bowers to Jason Worilds of Virginia Tech, who terrorized right tackle Matt Pipho in UM's 31-7 loss to the Hokies.

"I think their front seven is just like Oklahoma's front seven," guard Orlando Franklin said Tuesday. "There’s not a guy you can single out and pick on. Going into games, you try to assess people and see where the weaknesses are. Some people have good d-tackles and not so good d-ends. But their front seven is pretty good and like I said they’re two deep at it. We have to continue doing what we do and play assignment football."

> MORE ROLLOUTS?: Just because you saw Harris rollout against UCF to avoid blitzes and pass pressure, don't assume that's going to be UM's game plan the rest of the season. Harris said it was something specific to what the Knights were doing. "I like doing it," Harris said. "But that’s something that fit with UCF. They were sending blitzes from outside, knife it in, so we'd get outside of them. It would give you time to set up and throw the ball."

> MAN TO MAN COVERAGE: One thing Harris and his receivers are looking forward to aside from facing one of the nation's top pass defenses is the man-to-man coverage the Tigers employ.UM hasn't seen that since it faced Florida State in the opener.

"They have faith in their secondary," Harris said. "They're going to play man, and say `You beat us,' I guess they believe in their front seven, and their front seven is really good. Last week they put a lot of pressure on Riley Skinner [of Wake Forest]. And that was the main in focus in their win. We have to take care of their front. I think we have talented enough wide receivers to go against their corners man to man.”

Leonard Hankerson is confident he and his unit will win out: "Personally, I don’t think anybody can play us man."

Frankling agrees: "I really don’t think any team could play man against us because of the type of routes Coach Whipple has brought in and the type of guys we got," Franklin. "It's real hard to backpedal against someone who runs 4.3 and has as good hands like Leonard has. It’s going to make it real hard."

In case you missed it, safety Randy Phillips said he's passing on surgery for his torn labrum to play the rest of this season. Phillips said he missed the UCF game because of the flu.

> Guard Joel Figueroa practiced Tuesday and is expected to play this week. Last week, all five starters -- Jason Fox, Orlando Franklin, AJ Trump, Harland Gunn and Matt Pipho -- played until the final minute and a half against UCF. Franklin, who mentioned he practices every day at right tackle, said he prefers it that way.
> Running back Graig Cooper is practicing again. So, too is defensive end Eric Moncur. But I'd only write it down in pencil that both will likely play this week.


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Good stuff Manny

1st! i guess

How can they be 3-3 allowing 17 ppg? I'm guessing their offense sucks!

yeah their defensive backs may be this and that but they haven't faced someone like jacory and they haven't defended someone like hank, jimmy graham, laron byrd, travis benjamin, thearon collier, graig cooper off the back field, aldarius johnson (if he's healthy)

Manny, because the ACC Division race is up for grabs and the leaders won't play each other again, the Canes focus should be on "winning and advancing" to the next week. Basically - line'em up and knock'em down!

It would be a hell of an accomplishment to win the next 6 games, and are real sign of maturity for this team.

Hopefully, they don't think about the BCS and just go about their business - everything will take care of itself.

It is a one game season!


USF says Nov. 28 home game with Miami is nearly sold out, with
only 650 tickets remaining
-- greg auman


lol @ USF

the is is gonna blow clemson out. put the crack pipe down manny.

Spiller can cause our defense a lot of problems. This is going to be a good game.

I Hope all my fellow cane fans are heading out to the game this weekend at 3:30 on ABC!! Our guys need the support from our fan base!! So everyone come out to the game and let's rock the house and start our run to an ACC Championship and possibly a spot in the BCS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP!! C-A-N-E-S CANES CANES CANES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

USF is irrelevant right now. I think we should win the next 6, but every one of these ACC teams has something that can give us trouble. These are not dogmeat teams we've got ahead, and Clemson has some real talent. Just because they haven't put it together yet doesn't mean they won't be incredibly focused for us. Let's worry about this week.

Go Canes!

It sounds like Harris' "SpongeBob" edict is working, the team sounds focused. Clemson has talent, but the Canes are aware they have talent. I don't see them giving anything less than their top effort this Saturday.

LETS GO CANES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I live in Tampa and the Bull fans are hyped for this game. Lots of Canes fan here and the smack talking has been going on since the start of the season. Friend of mine went to the Bulls and Cincy game and the guy parking cars was flashing the U sign.

I am concern with the right side of our O-line. Jacory cannot take sacks like that against a good team on the road. We should handle Clemson but the O-line must get better.

Beating UCF 20 - 7 shows that the U is not back. The U that is back would have won that game 37-7 I think. Almost back though.

Glad to hear USF will be a sellout. The Canes used to sell out all the road games and our games were the game of the season for the opponents, who always brought their A game.
Clemson won't be a blowout because we don't do blowouts. (Eventually this will earn us style points - as the gentlemanly team.)
One win every Saturday, baby.

Guys, if you haven't checked out canesport.com, do the free 1-week trial - you'll be hooked. many hasn't mentioned this anywhere, so thought I'd help spread the word:

from canesport:


Norfolk (VA) Lake Taylor LB Travis Williams didn't follow the usual recruiting plan when it came to his relationship with the Canes.

The way he looks at it, it was him that recruited Miami.

"I didn't think Miami would offer me a scholarship," Williams said. "So one day after I got a (form) letter from Miami, I was like `I'm going to send my tape to them.' I told my coach to send it, and he was like `Okay, we'll see what happens.' I called my coach the next week and Randy Shannon had called my coach to offer."

That was early June.

"The next week I met coach Aubrey Hill," Williams said. "Before that they weren't even really looking at me. I just started sending my tapes and it worked out."

And how.

Williams is now a Hurricane commitment.

He says it's a done deal.

He committed at 8 p.m. Monday night.

"I talked with Aubrey Hill," Williams said. "I called him, he said `I'm hearing big things on the Internet.' He said `When you're ready let me know.' I said `I'm ready now.' We got that done with, he spoke with my mother, she had tears in her eyes because her son is going to college.

"Coach (Randy) Shannon, he had said if I'm set with Miami he didn't want me to take any other visits. So I'm set. I'm not taking any other visits."

Williams added that "I'm real excited. It's a big opportunity for me and my family."

Williams says he grew up dreaming of being a Cane. He says his favorite player is Ray Lewis and that he patterns his playing style after Sean Taylor.

"I caught Miami playing one time and just liked them," he said. "Ever since then I've been a fan."

Williams chose UM over LSU, West Virginia, Tennessee, Penn State and North Carolina.

He said helping draw him to Miami is the depth chart.

Williams is ranked the No. 13 outside linebacker prospect by Rivals.com.

"I like the fact that they're short on their linebackers," he said. "That's a good deal, because I can come in and ball out. I just have to come ready to practice and play hard. That's a good thing."

Williams began playing football at age 5, and he grew up playing running back, quarterback, receiver and linebacker. He still plays some receiver and quarterback for his high school team.

"I started playing when I was young, and I could always hit," he said. "When a player came to me I laid him down."

Helping UM was Williams' relationship with Hill.

"He's real cool," Williams said. "We don't discuss football, just talk about how the family is doing and all that."

Of his goals at Miami, Williams said, "I want to find a spot on the team where I can play. I want to get a good education and make it to the NFL."

USF is irrelevant right now.

Posted by: ChicagoCane | October 20, 2009 at 08:00 PM

I’ll post whatever my heart’s desire …
you don’t like it …


lol @ USF

Posted by: Dan | October 20, 2009 at 07:39 PM


You'll have not choice but to see a large number of Miami fans...
USF fans can't buy that many tickets.
-- JimUSFSig

I would expect the game to sell out, but of 65,000 people in the stands, at least 10,000 and maybe 15,000 will be Miami fans...

I expect a lot of non-Miami based Canes fans to attend this game. There are tons of them in Tampa and the surrounding areas.
-- Dixie Bull


Shannon and Whipple have been preaching all yr. about getting better as the season goes along. The D has looked better with additions and subtractions, minus the injuries.

The Offense should be progressing, Graham getting experience, Barry added, players growing in the o system, conclusion the U wins handily. Must play good on special teams , however, no short fields and such.

Thanks Manny...

Anybody who takes Clemson lightly is likely to be the same person saying... "I didn't see that coming !"

and being oblivious to what's in front of you... will get you beat!

Looking at what a team has done in the past, should only be used as a guide, because there are no gimmy's... just ask who Duke and Maryland have played.

Next is the word, Clemson is the team... Just do it!

I was wrong again.

- Miami 7th
- Florida 16th

I'm sorry for the confusion.


tampacane the score was 27-7

Beating UCF 20 - 7 shows that the U is not back. The U that is back would have won that game 37-7 I think. Almost back though. Posted by: TampaCanes

Tampa... to win by 20 when Randy shut it down, with 8 minutes remaining in the 4th and running out the clock... with 12 straight run plays,
Says... we didn't need the extra 17!

That's Randy being Randy with style!


Yeah Baby!

I just heard the new committe at LB and he says he is 6-3 and 204 lb

Canezilla... good catch... and I should have caught it too, as I knew we won by 20...

Your right 27-7. I just did not feel it for Miami. I know a win is a win and we have come a long way since dare i say it the Coker years but we did not look great against a bad UCF team. We looked good not great.

Clemson will be tough and I'm sure the Canes will be focused!


go anes clemsom should fear miami, teabagain going to win crap this year champnchip or hiesma nott sorr gay terd faaaaaaggggssss

This will be a tough game. Clemson has a good team. They are just as talented and maybe more. The Defense is the best in the ACC and one of the best in the country. Bottom line, we must bring our "A" game. Blocking and Tackling will be the difference.

If Clemson's defense is so good than why and how did they lose to maryland? Why are they ???3-3, Who have they beaten? HAve they seen an offense like ours?

And for manny to say ooohh ahhh, They have one of the top three Ds in the country behind penn State,Oklahoma and the gators, only allowing 15 pts a game. Well, Manu, UM put 21 on Oklahoma (could have been more, but Randy backed off).

I think we should respect Clemson, their speed, etc, but TheU should not be afraid. No way.


Because of circumstances in which I grew up, my attitude was always to not let anyone take advantage. I tried at all times to be aware and stay alert. I was determined not to let anyone get the edge. If you got within my security peramiters, I was prepared to take you on and employ all measures to defeat you. You would be lucky to take me by surprise, and if you didn't I bore no responsibility for what happened to you.
The Canes must adopt this kind of mental attitude and toughness. The bottom line is: it's either you or us, and it ain't gonna be us.
Blow them up Canes, take them apart. No quarter.

UM put 21 on Oklahoma (could have been more, but Randy backed off).

Posted by: Swag is something U can't coach | October 20, 2009 at 11:06 PM

I was at that game, but I don't remember it going down like that at all.

Would be great to blow a few teams out before it's all said and done. It is believed that Shannon doesn't like blowing out opponents, but I don't think that's true. Just last year, we put up 52 against Charleston Southern, 49 against Duke, and 41 against Texas A&M. If anything, Shannon doesn't like blowing out in-state opponents, which doesn't make sense to me from a recruiting standpoint, although Shannon obviously seems to have in-state recruiting under control, so who am I to question him?

We'll blow out an opponent at some point this season. Maybe a couple, maybe three.

Clemson would be an awesome team to blow out, especially because their defense is getting all kinds of hype. What worries me is that the last time Manny was somber in his pre-game blog posting, we got spanked by Virginia Tech.

Hopefully that game was an anomaly ("Blame it on the rain..."), though I agree with Manny that Clemson is NOT a team we should underestimate. They've played only decent teams with the exception of their opener against Middle Tennessee State. Their offense seems to have just started to click in their last win over a decent Wake Forest team. ON THE OTHER HAND, they've lost to the two ranked opponents they've faced this year--Georgia Tech and TCU--and one of those was a home game (TCU). Hopefully that trend continues.

I personally think we got this. Will probably be a shoot out. Miami's relatively conservative offense these last few games could make their defense over-confident. Moreover, I'm sure part of the reason for being conservative was to not reveal too much of Whip's genius (I expect several plays we haven't seen yet to be used against Clemson, but NOT the Wildcat, although we might make Clemson think we're running the WildCat but fake to something else, the seed of the deceit already planted at UCF when we lined up in the WildCat but motioned to something else). Our OL will be alright... Jacory will get smacked around here and there but we'll make them when they count and at least he's learned to not fumble or throw the ball up for grabs and risk an interception. And or D should come through big time against an offense that although they're coming off a good outing, is prone to making mistakes (against weaker teams than The U).

Can't wait until Saturday. Too bad it's only Tuesday.

LET'S GO CANES!!!!!!!!

[]_[] *CanesFanStuckInCali* []_[]

yo 718 u gotta put more of those canesport posts

this is The U. we fear no one.

That's idiotic. If we don't fear and respect the tigers then it will be vatech all over again. We need to play better than we've played last three games to put Clemson. And I'm getting sick and tired of the lack of progression with our offense. The playcalls need to
Change. With all jacory did last week and we barely beat a mediocre team. We are talking nc or bcs and we will be lucky to be in the top 25 at the end of the year. Either way, I will watch every week, lovin my canes.

optmus cane--- what, did you leave after the 3rd q? Where di UM drive to on the last drive? Answer- we went to about the Oklahoma 15 or something (or closer I cant recall exactly), and we ran out the clock. Did we kick a filed goal like Urban Liar did on us last year? No. Did we continue advancing to try to score? No. we took 3 knees. Um could have scored. They didnt.

That's how it went down.

In fact, Um score more points ion Ok than Texas did.

CANES IN A ROUT .... Write it down.

Thanks for the kind words.

We will have our work cut out for us against a very talented Canes team.

Should be a great game.


We have no chance.

We lost to Maryland - MARYLAND!

We lost to Georgia Tech - A team you beat badly!

We've lost to Turtles and Frogs - how can we hold up versus a bunch of HURRICANES?

Please don't run up the score.

Here's to a good game!

Last time we faced man to man coverage Jacory shredded FSUs secondary that's what we will face this week with clemson! If the O line blocks well we will score a lot! The key to the game will be special teams if we don't have good kickoff and punt coverage CJ Spiller and Jacoby Ford will exploit it and score 1 to 2 touchdowns we can't allow that this week that could be the difference in the game! Win the special teams battle and we will win the game convincingly! GO CANES bring the intensity and blow them out!!

The point difference on some of our wins can be attributed to the shortage of turnovers on D and no returns by the special teams. Those are things we've been complaining about since last year.

We rarely get a short field which limits our scoring opportunities. Canes football means we usually have a short field. Correct those issues and the big scores will come.

I'd be really concerned if this game was at Clemson, but it's not. We play well at home, so we should be able to pull this game out. Randy Shannon is right about the 1st quarter being important. We jump on Clemson and we can force them to pass. Spiller is a scary back...the kind of guy who can run for 200 yards easily.

You want playoffs in CFB ,,,well here it is we win we keep going..we lose were done and playing in a coker bowl...This all rides on the O -line and the right side where pipho is having a hard time in tough games...ucf and Ok burned him and VT mauled him...I see us running the ball right at them like GT did...I would like to see Benji in motion more to move the corners and backers so we run away from that....I see a great win and TCU getting beat and USC this week...along with Texas...we are number 5 by Sunday night...GO CANES...POWERBALL was this okay,..I was lil hard on Pipho....LOL

D needs to forve turnovers or we need to make a big play on special teams! Get a pick 6 or something that will get the crowd into! Ray Ray VT Brandon harris DVD Dare I say sam shields hell someone pick one and take it to the house!! I'm dying to see a big play on defense!!

nealtrom- let me remind you that Coker took us to 2 national championship games, 2 Peach Bowls, and ultimately because of his and his assistants' poor recruiting, the Micron PC computers Boise Bowl, and despite that, he was 3-2 in bowls.

I agree- run it down their collective throats. We have the rbs to do it. Run first, pass second. That is how you control games. That is how the NFL does it (for the most part).

Randy Shannon: DO NOT. I repeat, DO NOT kick it to CJ Spiller or Ford. I don't care, kick it OB, squib it, whatever. DO NOT kick it to those guys. We have only 2 guys that can run with t hose 2 speedsters- Sam Shields and maybe BH.

Agreed BCS this the only way we lose this game is if spiller and ford make big plays on special teams! Randy Shannon please don't kick it to them make them beat you on offense! Sam shields in the only person who could keep up with them so do us a favor don't kick it to em!

"the guy parking cars was flashing the U sign"


Wow. Got some new info. A friend just text me telling me
not to be surprised if you see Ben start at right tackle over pipho.
He has been tearing it up in practice and the coaches loved the why he has come around.

Posted by: Mis bolas son grandes | October 20, 2009 at 04:11 PM

canesport reports Ben Jones practicing with 1st team …


UFelony blows. Their coach is scumbag and their QB is a fullback. The next good pass he throws will be the first.

we may be hurt at tightend next year

Posted by: pay attention to the U | October 20, 2009 at 01:12 PM


Submitted by mark from gastonia, nc
Q: Will Richard Gordon be a candidate for a medical redshirt and be able to come back next year, which would be great with all the TE losses? What about tight end? I know we have one but is there anyone else we are looking to get?

Answered 10/20/09 14:37:32 by Manny Navarro
A: Gordon will need NCAA approval to come back. Miami coaches obviously would love for that to happen because of the lack of depth at the position. Right now, Billy Sanders and Gordon would be it along with 2010 commitment Clive Walford. I think there is a good chance a defensive player or someone like John Calhoun is given a shot at tight end in the spring.


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