Dabo Swinney addressed the media via conference call Sunday to preview Clemson‘s game against Texas A&M. The Tigers and Aggies are both coming off decisive Game 1 victories. Texas A&M handled Texas State 41-7, Saturday, and Clemson picked up a 52-14 conference win over Georgia Tech, Thursday night.
In addition to posting convincing victories, both the Aggies and the Tigers were able to come through Week 1 relatively unscathed. Texas A&M reported no major injuries in its postgame press conference.
The Aggies are replacing some key pieces from an offense that posted 501 yards against Clemson in 2018, but Kellen Mond is returning as the signal caller. Mond threw for 430 yards in last year‘s game and four touchdowns in the Week 1 blowout over Texas State. Each of those games took place in College Station, however, and it will be a tough task to match that success in Death Valley. The oddsmakers in Las Vegas don‘t foresee a tight game, opening the line at Clemson -16.5.
KEY COMMENTS FROM DABO SWINNEY:
- We got the opportunity to study ourselves this weekend. Guys were focused and ready. We’re a young, but talented team. It’s just one game, but happy we dominated the game.
- Disappointed with the penalties and turnovers, but the special teams were outstanding (especially punter Will Spiers).
- A few guys didn’t grade out a winner, so we have something to work on.
- On Trevor Lawrence’s 1st interception: The corner back (Tre Swilling) read “quick game” because we had a poor split. Just a great play from the corner. He was keying because of our poor split, but I was proud of Trevor. His effort helped prevent points.
- On Texas A&M: They’ve recruited well. Quarterback Kellen Mond really hurt us last year. He is big and strong and he can really run. He can hurt you in both the passing game and the run game. And their defensive tackle is a grown man. This is as good a secondary as we’ll see all season. They’ll be a handful.
- We got 8.4 per carry. If we can run the ball effectively, it sets us up for explosive plays.
- All in all, we scored 52 points and played a lot of guys. And defensively, four sacks, eight tackles for loss and we didn’t give up points off the turnovers.