Take the day off: Clemson gets a break from the grind, plus stay tuned for upcoming projects

BY AARON BRENNER | abrenner@postandcourier.com
@Aaron_Brenner

GREENVILLE – Yes, that’s a Greenville dateline.

Because the media was given the day off from our work, earlier in the week. That was unexpected.

The players getting the same treatment? Well, now, that’s a nice surprise for them.

Probably a wise idea there, coach. Too many nagging injuries, and while Clemson has avoided disaster – deep breath, T.J. Green and Jordan Leggett – it’s got to have all hands on deck for that first game. But since it’s not for another 16 days, a little break never hurt anybody.

That’s just as valuable for team health as it is for morale.

Remember, a big scrimmage beckons Saturday morning at Memorial Stadium. Decisions have to be made on redshirts as well as getting closer to a firm two-deep, because actual gameplanning for Georgia starts about a week from today.

******

In the meantime, I’d like to share a couple stories you should look for coming up in the next week to 10 days.

- On Saturday, we’ll investigate the history of Clemson and South Carolina opening against quality BCS opponents rather than, like Adam Sandler said as Paul Crewe in The Longest Yard, “start every season against Appalachian State or some slack Division II team. Kick the living” – um, poop – “out of them.”

How have the Tigers and Gamecocks fared when taking on the likes of No. 5 Georgia or Receiving Votes North Carolina? And much more importantly, how does the rest of their season unfold after starting off with such an important matchup?

I call this piece, “Steak or Cupcake?”

- I’ve spoken with a Georgia historian on the Clemson-Georgia series. I won’t go as in-depth into the Eleven Years’ War as I’d like, but this man has some interesting background on the rivalry.

- You’ll hear from both talent and producers of College GameDay on why it’s become such a television phenomenon; and why, subsequently, they’ve kept the same Big Three together for 18 years and counting.

- Jeff Davis let me in his office for 30 minutes, yielding some fascinating perspectives on how to handle the hype train for the 2013 season, why Danny Ford waited more than two decades to join the Ring of Honor, and how he’s counseling a particular Tiger who’s fighting an internal war that’s unique to many college football players – but not as many as you think. (More on that last topic in September.)

Finally, I generally try to stay away from hyperbole or compare my work or the work of my organization to others, but I promise The Post & Courier’s going to be one of your favorite sources for coverage as it pertains to Clemson AND South Carolina each on their own quests for national glory, which of course converge in Columbia on Nov. 30. My partner-in-crime will be in place soon enough, and we hope you’ll enjoy what we have to offer from a broader point of view.

In the immortal words of Ace Ventura, “Super! Take care now, bye bye then.”

-AB

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