CLEMSON – Been awhile since we went the 7-at-7 route. Will really try to do this more often as a form of practice notes, along with other tidbits and anecdotes.
1) Clemson’s ready for a midweek test, going to some stadium work Wednesday morning in the first of two practices. It’ll be a situational scrimmage.
“We will practice live” – meaning tacking encouraged – “and go through all kinds of situations,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. “We will work on the two-minute drill, short yardage, special third-down situations. It will give us a good look at where we are.”
2) Team honors called the PAT Awards were distributed Tuesday for excellence during the summer. The monthly winners were safety Robert Smith for May, linebacker Stephone Anthony for June, and tailback Zac Brooks for July.
Swinney explained the PAT monthly winner as “a player who has demonstrated the epitome of what All In means. It is a person who has been exemplary in all areas, academics, the weight rooms, all areas of being a Clemson football player. When you do that in all areas it translates to the field.”
Smith and Anthony are expected to start on defense, while Brooks got a word of encouragement from offensive coordinator Chad Morris as having an outstanding camp. He led the squad in rushing yards in Saturday’s scrimmage by a healthy margin over Roderick McDowell.
3) Hale McGranahan of CUTigers.com – the Scout.com site covering Clemson – took a picture of an ice chest outside a Kangaroo Express painted in an ire-worthy advertisement – one that was later revealed to be taken down due to mild outrage.
The photo is of, ahem, a certain orange-clad football player throwing a football in an ad for, er, a certain beverage conglomerate.
It appears to be Tajh Boyd shilling Bud Light. The product is obvious. The actual player’s identification is not … necessarily.
His jersey number is probably 10. But it’s not unquestionably so. Boyd’s name and face are absolutely nowhere to be found as part of the mural. It’s basically a vague comic book character version of your friendly neighborhood Clemson quarterback.
OK, so the message boarders quickly pointed out the photo is clearly an artistic representation of a real photo taken of Boyd – when he was a little less lithe than he is now, it’s worth pointing out.
Still. Guys. I know we’re all sensitive because of the Johnny Manziel nonsense. Let’s try and remember there’s a fat gap between Manziel (allegedly) caught signing autographs for cash … and a gas station using an ad that kinda sorta looks like Tajh Boyd in an act Boyd didn’t sign off on, literally or figuratively.
I grant you, it’s a little sketchy that a beer company uses a college athlete for advertising. I can’t fault anyone for crying foul on that. Memorial Stadium, like most (all?) on-campus stadiums, doesn’t sell alcohol at concessions for a reason.
It was telling when Fox Carolina sent a photographer out to the gas station to get footage of the ad … and discovered it had been removed. Even more so that a company rep didn’t answer the station’s inquiries as to why and how the ad was produced in the first place.
Just another weird story to keep us churning before kickoff.
4) Speaking of Tajh Boyd … no, seriously, go read my Hampton Roads story. It was a whole road trip and everything.
5) Darius Robinson’s recovered from his concussion symptoms, and he’s back on the field. Not a moment too soon. Clemson’s cornerback depth is thinner than a photo album of majestic icebergs in the Charleston Harbor.
6) Two final words from Tuesday’s teleconference with ABC’s top broadcast pair. Kirk Herbstreit reiterated his stance on Manziel (amazing how ol’ Johnny Football found his way in this column twice, ain’t it?) and the reported investigation into his potential interactions with autograph brokers.
“Either it’s the most far-fetched story I’ve ever heard of, or he’s the dumbest player to ever play college football,” Herbstreit uttered a week ago Tuesday, spicing up a relatively passive conversation on the subject with David Pollack and Chris Fowler during a College Football Live segment shot in Clemson.
Herbstreit said basically the same thing to reporters Tuesday. He’s one of the most well-known voices in college football today, and it’s a powerful stance, drawing the line in the sand for Manziel’s future choices, whether he’s a part of the NCAA or not.
This story will not go away, much as you may want it to.
7) And finally, Brent Musberger reveals how he prepares for college football season: by scouring all the preseason preview magazines available. Athlon, Lindy’s, Phil Steele … you name it, he buys it.
“I go up the road to Missoula, Montana, and I scoop them up,” Musberger revealed. “I’m like a little boy on Christmas Eve.”
Full disclosure: when I heard this on the teleconference, I thought Musberger said he felt like a little boy “at Krispy Kreme.”
Which would have gotten the point across just as well, and in more colorful fashion. Unfortunately for the good people of Montana, Krispy Kreme hasn’t yet found itself with a franchise in Big Sky Country.