Clemson Over FSU Extras

Clemson Over FSU Extras

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Last Tuesday, Clemson defensive coordinator Vic Koenning looked squarely into the eyes of a group of reporters and said there would be no blitzes, nickel packages or fancy schemes. A vanilla defense is the term he used. Good thing he wasn't in a court of law.

The Tigers used every defensive package at their disposal against Florida State and it worked nearly to perfection as the Seminoles managed only 10 offensive points, with their only touchdown coming in the fourth quarter.

"There were a lot of different coverages," Koenning said with a sly grin. "It was a half truth, maybe."

The defensive line pressured Florida State quarterback Drew Weatherford most of the night and ended up with four sacks. There was much more pressure applied than against Boston College.

Koenning, in his usual jabbing manner, took a swipe at the Seminoles.

"That probably has a lot to do with guys on the other side of the line," he said. "Maybe our guys are getting to where they're getting tired of getting blocked."

Everyone knows the Florida State offense isn't going to light up the scoreboard much, but what made the effort by the Tigers special is that they had four starters out at the beginning.

There were so many new faces and people with so little playing experience actually on the field that Koenning was walking on egg shells throughout the game.

"Sometimes, I didn't even want to look to see who was in (the game)," he said. "It would just scare the fire out of me."

Quick snap
The game-winning score by tailback James Davis was set up by something the offensive coaching staff recognized with Florida State midway through the third quarter.

Davis' long run to the 4 was set up by the Seminoles lack of speed in getting set at the line of scrimmage. And because they were taking so long to get ready, quarterback Will Proctor was under instruction to get the snap off quick to maybe catch them off guard.

It worked to perfection.

"Our entire staff recognized that they were having trouble getting lined up and that was just a collective decision that we had made during the third quarter to really increase the tempo," offensive coordinator Rob Spence said. "We thought we had a chance because maybe of the environment we were in. The clock was becoming a real concern and those runs had to hit and hit big and it certainly did."

However, Davis said he was the one that went to the coaches and told them of Florida State's inability to get set quickly on defense and suggested Clemson speed up the tempo.

Quick Hits
Due to total confusion, Florida State had used all three of its first-half timeouts by 6:17 of the first quarter. Needless to say the fans weren't happy. … Prior to Clemson's last drive, the three running backs of Davis, C.J. Spiller and Reggie Merriweather had a combined 18 carries for 27 yards.

Over their first two games, the Seminoles had 53 carries for 46 yards. They had 40 yards on 11 rushes in the first quarter against Clemson. Their running backs finished with 27 carries for 106 yards. …

The second quarter was practically owned by the Tigers offense. They had the ball 11:32 and at one point ran 22 straight plays, thanks to the fumble recovery on a punt. … Cornerback C.J. Gaddis saw playing time at safety, which is where he played last season. …

Florida State's blocked extra point return for two points was the first time it had done so, as well as being the first time it had happened to Clemson. Also, the blocked field goal for a touchdown was the first against the Tigers ever. …

With Clemson holding the lead at the half, nearly every Florida State fan serenaded the ‘Noles with boos as they headed toward the locker room. … At 10:21 in the second quarter, Tigers coach Tommy Bowden challenges a call and it the ruling is overturned. The result was a fumble given to Clemson at its own 47. It was the first successful challenge for Bowden.

CUTigers.com Recommended Stories