« Haith nabs 6-9, 230-pound center for 2010 class | Main | T. Johnson has found role on offense »

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."

THIS AND THAT...
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.

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Manny, since I'm a South Florida Native exiled in NM, I rely on you to keep me up to date on me beloved canes. You're great and I read 99% of the stuff you write. However, I'm superstitious and I have to say, STOP. The last time I read...Why U Should Fear...our boys got knocked around by VT. Come on man, it's about time to just start saying they can't lose. It just might help. Thanks for all your work.

I think the officials love us just like I love me some Tebow.

Bad Calls

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zO78BDleQjA&feature=player_embedded

Dunny,

There is a reason your exiled to NM. Really superstitious?

Clemson's offense is average but this is the type of team "da U' has trouble with. They have a habit of making ordinary offenses look great. Clemson's dee may be good but they haven't faced the speed or depth that we have at receiver. Our line has to give Jacory time and if they do that we will eat them up.

LB Travis Williams from VA took the initative and sold himself. WOW! Sounds like a confident and smart young man. His mother should be proud. Hope he stays true to the "U" since he initiated the move and committed himself. RS want kids to WANT to come to the "U". I hope he knows those other schools will not stop trying to recruit him now that he has committed to the Canes. Welcome to the Hurricanes and to Miami, the Magic City! We bleed green and orange here. GO CANES!!!!!!!!!!!!

Obviously we need to prevent sacks, but Harris has done pretty well in the face of that pressure. In the last 3 games he's been sacked 12 times-he's also completed more than 70% of his passes, for an average of 237 yards/gm with 7 TD's and 4 picks. (The picks were in plus territory so they cost us potential points, but did not lead to opponent's points.)

Even against VT, if his receivers just catch the ball, his numbers would have been quite good with at least 3 TD's. He can handle pressure. The issue is more his health than performance.

Clemson is a big play team-take them away and make them earn their points, and they're little more than house cats. If Miami plays even a b+ game, they win easy.

ChicagoCane: I overreacted ...

SORRY

Anyone who thinks Miami can just walk into this game and blow out Clemson KNOWS NOTHING about football. NOTHING.

Clemson is one of the most talented and poorly coached teams in the country. This is why they are 3-3 and can lose to a team like MD one week and then go out and rip a pretty good team like Wake a new one the next. They are inconsistent, but that doesn't mean they don't have every bit the talent that we do, and probably better depth.

Could Clemson roll out there and lay a big fat egg and let us roll up a nice whupping on them? Yes, they could. But, HOW OFTEN DO TEAMS SHOW UP UNPREPARED TO PLAY THE U!!??? The Tigers are going to bring their best game and we damn well better be prepared to play the full 60 minutes and possibly more.

This is a very talented team getting a rare opporunity, for them, to play on the big stage for a national(mostly) audience against a highly visible program. Most of their games are not even broadcast outside of South Carolina. Now they get to play Miami at 3:30 on ABC. You think they're not gonna be up for that!?

Get it through your thick skulls, it's not the U on the side of the helmet that wins games, it's the boys on the field and the coaches on the sidelines.

Do I think we're a better team than Clemson? Hell Yeah, I do.
Do I think we have better players and coaches than them?
Hell Yeah, I do.
Am I disgusted be the total lack of respect that many contributors on this blog are giving Clemson?
Yes.

GO CANES!!!

With Vilma and Shockey roaming the sidelines on Saturday, we will be fine!

Let's Go Canes!

Sorry if I was a little harsh. I don't mean to bang on my fellow 'Canes fans, we're family after all, all on the same side.

And I don't mean to say that I think we'll lose to Clemson, I think we'll win this game and should win this game and if we play our best game, no one in the ACC can play with us.

But, as someone who has watched almost every one of Clemson's games this year, mostly because my girlfriend is a fan, I can tell you 100% that this is a very talented team. I can also tell you that their coaching is just about as bad as ours was under Coker and that their quarterback couldn't play JV in South Florida.

But, they are a VERY talented team and an ACC opponent. Always respect your adversary.

Also, the fans need to show up and all this BS, "ohhh they're just Clemson, we's gonna blow them out" is a joke. There are just as many NFL players on that team, possibly more for the upcoming draft, as we have. This is going to be a good game.

Sorry, I just get pi$$ed when I see even our fans disrespecting an ACC opponent.

Look forward to a good game. GO CANES!!!!!!

ALL of our remaining games will be tough but the CANES should win them ALL...

Play with emotion and play assignment football and our talent and coaching will win out...

GO CANES!

The ACC is the most mediocore conference in the country and the reason is, the QB's are inconsistent. Clemson has not played a team yet that has a great QB like Jacory. We have the most talent, by far in the conference, the only problem being that it is mostly young but when they finally hit there groove, watch us blow by. Va. Tech has got to be the luckiest team in College football, Their offense sucks year after year and they still win 9 games. They seem to get teams on days where they are at their worst and they live on other teams mistake but hey that's football. That seems to be our biggest problem- we can't take the ball away from the other team. How many T.O.'s have we created in the last three years? We're just being way to kind to these bums.

IN SUMMARY | WHAT MAKES Travis Williams GREAT

This young talent is versatile. He has the size, speed and ability to play wide receiver, outside linebacker, defensive end and strong safety.

Titans coach Hank Sawyer said, “If I was a college coach, I would put him as close to the line of scrimmage as possible because he’ll make people run away from him.”

Last season he was All-Eastern District at defensive end and wide receiver. One recruiting site ranks him as the No. 7 recruit in the state and the No. 15 outside linebacker in the country.

He had 78 tackles, 14 sacks and 12 quarterback hurries. As a receiver, his size, strength and hands make him nearly unstoppable. Put him at linebacker, and there’s no one who can block him one on one.

He also can be a shutdown defensive back with incredible closing speed. He can easily add another 20 to 30 pounds and without losing speed or quickness.

Speaking of speed, Williams ran 4.38 in the 40. He also benched 325 and lifted 185 pounds almost 20 times.

Sawyer said he likes Williams because “he makes plays and makes things happen.” So far Williams has more than 20 offers, including from Tennessee, LSU, Miami, Alabama, Penn State, Virginia, Virginia State, North Carolina, North Carolina State, West Virginia and Syracuse.

Sawyer said Williams is not going to rush into making a decision.

http://hamptonroads.com/recruiting/player/111

Weaver- STF please. You make no sense.

Mediocre conf? Thats in the yes of the beholder. It all depends on how you look at it. SEC- top heavy-- 3 teams: LSU, UF, Alabama. Thats it. In the end, So carolina will lose to Clemson, Ga will lose to Ga Tech, UF will beat FSU. That will make the tally 3-3 between the aCc and the SEC this year (not including bowls).

Hey,

BCS this,
If you read what I said you wouldn't be giving me all these scenerios. The SEC has a bunch of mediocore QB's too. and I don't care who plays who. The SEC's overall talent, from top to bottom is better than the ACC. I don't care about the other teams in the Acc only the "U". I don't care if the others go 0-12. And while I'm at it, The only teams in the SEC that has the talent level as good or maybe just a little better, would be L.S.U. ALA., & the Turds.

mark weaver you are a gayturd. Get off our board...it's all about the EWE.

UF VT
ALa UM
LSU GTech
GA BC
Auburn Clemson
So car NC
Ark Wake
Ole Miss NC st
Kentucky Maryl
Miss St Duke
Vandy Virginia
Tenn FSU

Top 4 definitely SEC
Middle 4 favor ACC
Lowest 4 a wash

even conferences. Period.

I agree though I could care about ACC vs SEC. All I care about is the U. For all we know the U leaves the ACC and rejoins the Big east next year.

I recall everyone hating the fact that Marve ran too much, and would tuck it and take off before he went through his progressions. Jacory stands tall in the pocket and does a masterful job at picking out the best available receiver. I dont recal Ken Dorsey or any of our great qb's being runners. Jacory needs to keep doing what he has been doing, and the Oline just neds to black better. We all knew before the season that the Oline, mainly Pihpo was the weak link, and it shows at times. Whipple has done a good job at max protecting and adding wrinkles like unbalanced lines to offset the weaknesses the Oline has. Some people just cant read between the lines. Shannon wont give actual injury updates just as much as he wont admit the problems the weak Oline is having b/c he understands the opposing team is looking for any additional info to attack the team. Sit tight and look for one of the young Oline players to start getting more playing time at RT, and for Pihpo to start seeing the bench more.

we have no reason to fear anyone! I'm not saying we're gonna run all over clemson but we should have a great crowd on saturday and give us an advantage, we didn't fear FSU, we didn't fear GT, VT, nor Oklahoma and we sure as hell ain't gonna fear clemson!!

No, we shouldn't and don't fear no-one. Protect Jacory, play solid football , RESPECT Clemson......and we will be OK.

Berry may start against Clemson.

You Canes fans have such stellar grammar

Canes 24
Clemson 13
Enough said!

Mark it down ! Clemson will upset Miami 21- 17 on Saturday !
The "U" will underestimate the talent and coaching of Clemson. We have turned the corner, and our offense will win the game, not rely on the defense.

Go TIGERS !

I dont know why everyone thinks jacory harris is so great. Georgia Tech is never consistent so that win wasnt big. And Oklahoma was over ranked so that was nothing great. You guys are cocky and its going to stab you in the back this saturday.

I dont know why everyone thinks jacory harris is so great. Georgia Tech is never consistent so that win wasnt big. And Oklahoma was over ranked so that was nothing great. You guys are cocky and its going to stab you in the back this saturday.

Posted by: Chris


Who is cocky? We're 5-1 , and ranked in the top 10. We got spanked ONCE, and learned from it. How's that being cocky. Sounds like your just po'ed because your team isn't doing that well.

My daddy is going to be at the game watching me for the first time. I think I'll put 5 Touchdown's on you Saturday for him.

This is where you just showed your cockiness again in that entire sentence:
Who is cocky? cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky cocky. something something something your team isn't doing that well.

RQ

The only corner the Tigers are going to turn is the one leading to the Tiger Town Tavern. If Spiller makes it to the corner, he'll wish he was sitting at the Tavern instead of getting body slammed.

Mark,

Spiller won't win the game for us, so he can sit in TTT for all I care. Jacoraaaayy is certainly a poised quarterback and your OC is talented and experienced to make the most out of a freshman QB, but he'll face another tough defense that'll send him and his "swag U" lousy haircut into the dirt all day ! Mark that down too......

Not sure if I want to be knocked around on Saturday by those vicous Clemson defense. Please guys, stop provoking these guys and lets hope to win......Please :)

Chris,

I can't agree with you more. Yes we don't have the best record by any means, but just because they are 5-1 doesnt mean much. They beat a poor FSU team, a good GT team that we lost a close game to on the road, a 3-3 OK team, dismantled by VT, and then won against two highschool teams. They are two plays away from being 3-3 as well, got lucky and pulled out wins agains FSU and OK.
Bring it on Miami, it'll be a good game either way, but we'll show the "U" and the rest of the nation that you guys are overrated !

Clemson 34
Miami 17

Enough Said!!

Comeback to reality U of M!

Go Tigers!! Yaba-Dabo-DooooooIt!!!!

OK, I take back what I said. Slash those f'ers throats. Clemson fans are f'in idiots!

Psych...

Hey rawhemmroids or whatever you call yourself, got back to 'Turd country and pork your mama in the back of your trailer again. We know it's you.

Seriously, any Clemson fan that would come on here talking like that would have to be escaped from the same asylum that you crawled out of. Get outta here ya big dope!

We thumped a hapless seminole team Crushed what was supposed to be one of the top defenses in the country in oklahoma, drubbed that out of style wishbone offense running team-Georgia Tech and yes we did beat up on a couple pop warner teams the last two games but that's all we had to do to tame those flee bag kittycats coming to town this weekend and oh by the way lost in a monsoon rain at Va. Tech, that's the only thing that saved those bums. The sun will be shining this weekend on "Da U".

Rain has that much of an effect on your players ? Phew.... not even the most perfect of weathers could have saved Miami that day against VT.
Players train to play in any weather. Weather can be used as an excuse in a close game, but not the one against UM vs. VT.
An to correct you again.....Forecast is isolated showers on Saturday in Miami, so there is a chance of rain. If rain makes the "U" melt like it did, then bring on the rain !
Go TIGERS !

I sense a trend here, all the homers from the opposing teams want to come on our blog and throw up all over themselves and talk crap. That's fine. After Saturdays whooping, y'all will go back to your trailer park and get on someone elses blog. Miami 34 Clemson 10, and that is after Shannon decides to call off the dogs in the 3rd quarter.

For the record, it has rained at EVERY Clemson game this year. This will be the first game this season with good weather.

I think this game will come down to 2 things: 1) Can UM stop Clemson's rushing attack. The Run D cost UM the game against VT.
2) Can Jacory Harris withstand the pressure and beat Clemson's secondary in man coverage. Clemson is 7th in the nation in pass defense with the #1 guy in INTs all the while blitzing like crazy and letting their DBs play man coverage. Jacory is good, but how good remains to be seen.

This should be an exciting game between two highly skilled teams.

North Carolina was highly ranked in D last night and see what happened to them? ACC rankings mean nothing!!

Oklahoma was highly ranked too and what happened to them?

Well, that was fun! RQ looks like an idiot right about now for doubting Spiller. Amusing to say the least.

Whoops, read that wrong. Mark Weaver is the idiot.

« 1 2

The comments to this entry are closed.