Clemson held a two-and-a-half hour practice in full pads on the practice fields behind the Jervey Athletic Center on Friday. It was the final practice before a stadium scrimmage on Saturday morning. The scrimmage is closed to the public.
AUDIO: Swinney part 1 (7:14)
AUDIO: Swinney part 2 (10:35)
AUDIO: Thomas Austin (2:36)
AUDIO: Scotty Cooper (2:31)
Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney was pleased with the practice on Friday. “There was a lot of enthusiasm, a good spirited practice,” said Swinney. “It shows some good leadership.
“We had a lot of competitive situations, working on some redzone offense and defense. The offensive line stood out to me today. We put the ball on the nine yard line, first-and-goal and the offense was successful. The pass protection was much better today. They gave that extra effort.”
Swinney also commented on the wide receiver position. “We continue to hold out Jacoby Ford. We don’t play until September 5. He is doing fine, but there is no need to rush it. We know what he can do.
“It might prove to be a blessing in disguise because it has gotten a lot more reps for he young receivers.” When asked who has stood out among the younger players at Ford’s position, Swinney immediately mentioned red-shirt freshman Jaron Brown. “Jaron Brown has stepped up. Things are starting to click for him. I am glad we red-shirted him last year because he is going to be a very good player for us.”
When meeting with the team after practice, Swinney pointed out the fine play of walk-on Jess Bowers, a defensive end from Mountain Rest, SC and Walhalla High School during Friday’s workout.
“Look out guys there is a new Bowers in town,” Swinney told the team. “We are going to have to make sure the roster is clear that there is a DaQuan Bowers and a Jess Bowers.”
Jess Bowers made a strong play in a short yardage situation in practice on Friday to throw the ball carrier for a loss. He is a walk-on defensive lineman who has been away from organized football for a few years. He graduated from high school in 2002. He does have football experience in the movies however. He might be one of the few people to appear in three football movies; “We Are Marshall”; “Radio” and “Leatherheads.”
Seven players missed Friday’s practice due to injury. The players who missed practice were Spencer Benton (groin), Wilson Norris (knee), Jacoby Ford (hamstring), Brandon Clear (ribs), Andre Ellington (knee), Jamie Cumbie (shoulder) and Jarvis Jenkins (chest).