Thursday practice last of the week
Dabo Swinney
Posted Oct 8, 2009

CLEMSON -- Coach Dabo Swinney put an emphasis on getting it done right in practice this week.

Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney wishes a game was scheduled for Saturday but believes the bye has “probably come at a great time”.

“It’s a great time for us to get healthy, both mentally and physically,” he said.

With an emphasis on getting it done right all week, there’s been plenty of “good on good” work this week to help correct fundamental mistakes of the past.

Swinney said it comes down to each player being 100 percent sure of his assignment.

“If it means running it three times in a row, that’s what we do…if I don’t feel comfortable with it, we throw it out,” he said.

Health-wise, Clemson is making the most of the break by getting in plenty of rest and treatment for C.J. Spiller’s ailing toes. Although he hasn’t practiced all week, Chris Hairston spent the week back on the first team.

“Chris is doing fine…he looks well and looks like he’s going to be ready to go. Another week is a long time,” Swinney said.

Competition “is as good as can be for this time of year” with a little shake up along the offensive line. Dalton Freeman is challenging Mason Cloy for the starting center spot. David Smith’s move to left tackle is looking to be a positive though Hairston has the position locked down. Smith’s emergence has Swinney feeling pretty good about the depth forming at tackle.

“It looks like (Smith) is wanting to be a good player and do the things you’ve got to do and battle a little bit,” Swinney said.

If there was a game Saturday, he said the quarterbacks’ roles would remain the same with Kyle Parker starting and Willy Korn coming in for the occasional drive.

Swinney hopes Parker’s success on the baseball diamond works its way over to Death Valley next weekend.

“KP is 12 for 20 with five homeruns against Wake Forest,” Swinney said. “I hope that we can transfer some of that over to the gridiron. That’d be kind of nice. We need a couple of those homeruns.”

Jamie Harper and Andre Ellington now find themselves even in the backup role. With Spiller sitting out practice this week, they’ve split first team reps. Swinney said they’ve both practice well after not playing well against Maryland.

“I challenged them a little bit but I’ve challenged everybody—the coaches, players, we’re all getting after it,” he said. “It’s been a fun week.”

With the no game on Saturday, the Tigers will also be off Friday with no practice. The school’s fall break is scheduled for early next week and it gives the Tigers an opportunity to work without the limitations of the NCAA’s 20-hour rule.

Workouts are scheduled for Monday morning with meetings scheduled throughout the later portion of the morning and into the afternoon.

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