CLEMSON — Clemson’s offense has been prolific through its first eight games just like last season. But Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris said he sees a different trajectory than he saw a year ago.
“A year ago at this time I didn’t feel like we were playing our best football whereas right now I think you are starting to see that gradual climb,” Morris said. “One of the best things to happen to us from an offensive standpoint is Virginia Tech. (Those struggles) brought some guys back down to earth (saying) ‘Hey, you know what, you better bring you’re ‘A’ game.’”
Clemson lost three of five games played in November or later last season. Clemson had 16 turnovers during its final six-game stretch.
Morris sees a different trend this fall in part because quarterback Tajh Boyd has consistently made better decisions and has become a more effective runner.
Clemson is ranked 14th in the nation in total offense, averaging 498 yards per game.
Spurrier-said, Dabo-said continues
Dabo Swinney said he was “embarrassed for” South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier when asked about Spurrier’s comments Monday. During a rally for injured star Marcus Lattimore, Spurrier agreed with Swinney’s praise of Lattimore’s character while adding that Clemson is “a school that used to beat us a lot that doesn’t beat us anymore” and that “usually when that coach (Swinney) talks about South Carolina it is a bunch of garbage, a bunch of BS.”
Duke employs risk/reward
Morris said he’s been surprised with how often defenses have stuffed the line of scrimmage to stop the run this season, leaving Clemson receivers in man-on-man situations. Clemson will see more at Duke.
“They might play as much zero and cover 1 as anybody we’ve seen this year,” Morris said. “They like to bring a lot of pressure. They want to bring more than you can block.
“So when that happens and you are going to stop the run then you have to hit some passes over the top.”
Duke QB questionable
Duke starting quarterback Sean Renfree suffered a concussion in the 48-7 loss to Florida State. His status for Saturday’s game against Clemson is uncertain.
Clemson receiver Adam Humphries will continue to split practice reps between cornerback and wide receiver. … Cornerbacks Garry Peters (back) and Bashaud Breeland (abdominal strain) are probable to play.