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News & Notes from First Practices

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Not much comes out of camp in an official sense anymore with Munson trying to cut out the pay sites as sources of information, and restricting access to the media in general. However, there are a few things to make note of going forward which should certainly be taken with a grain of salt. Remember that real practice kicks in after installation of the plays and formations, which generally takes at least 2 weeks.

-Sammy Watkins is suspended for the first two games of the season for his trouble this offseason. I completely support the 2-game choice by Swinney.

- As FF mentioned, Justin Parker will redshirt this season. Dabo said he should’ve been RS’d two years ago, which I agree with of course.

- Mike Bellamy was kicked out of his Mississippi JUCO. Tardnet still won't accept this fact because there is no link. I do not know the reason, but I did hear that he wasn’t cooperating in the drills over the summer there. Today we found out where he's going to try next.

- Tony Steward says he’s almost 100%, and is lined up at 3rd string WILL. Of course this means he is around 80%, knowing Clemson’s track record with joint injuries, but we hope he’s close enough to it so that he can showcase his tremendous talent. For now there is no plan to RS. If he doesn’t end up with a few hundred snaps minimum, you know I’m going to come back and hammer this point.

- For anyone who missed it, Corico Hawkins was moved to 2nd string WILL and took his father’s last name of Wright.

- Keith Adams is back in Clemson in a support-staff role for the LBs. There are other ex-players taking similar support roles this year in pursuit of either finishing degrees or graduate school

- Tavaris Barnes lost weight in the offseason, and lost about 10lbs compared to this time last season. He’ll move back to DE since a 269lb NG (where they slated him before and which made no sense to me, he’s a 3) might as well be road kill. Dabo still projects him inside, but depth at DE is a problem. Tavaris had a difficult summer, his fiancée (now wife as of last week) gave birth to a son prematurely, and the baby passed away within a couple days. He also lost his brother to an enlarged heart problem. We’ll be pulling for him.

- Swinney said DE Vic Beasley is likely to make an impact this season as a speed rusher. I think if we can use him like LSU’s Barkevious Mingo, he can really shine. He just won’t be able to handle run-heavy offenses and situations.

- Rashard Hall has been wearing a sleeve/soft-brace over the knee but observers have told us he’s not having problems.

- I’ve not heard much about the line, aside from a few praises and complaints which mean little because they have been in shells. Freeman is not practicing heavily yet. David Beasley is one that is frequently called out for lack of effort and focus in several areas. Full pad practices started today.

- The Chad says Cole Stoudt is #2 "without a doubt" but that Roberts is pushing him. He says Chad Kelly is mentally swimming, which should come as no surprise. It is always always better for a freshman QB to spend a year redshirting.

- Germone Hopper is almost assured of avoiding a RS, as we predicted in February. He’s too talented to sit. His weight has come up into the mid/upper 170s. I’m hoping the Training Table can get him into the 180s next spring. If he knew the plays he’d be ahead of Adam Humphries at the 2nd string 2-back position (Sammy’s spot), but is also mentally swimming.

- Charone Peake has done some cross-training at the 2-back, in addition to his usual 5-spot (Jaron Brown). There has been good mention of his work this offseason.

- Bryant is one guy who has been accused of not putting forth enough effort in learning the system, but The Chad says he has picked up his focus level. I think if he wants to work hard, he can be as nasty a threat as Watkins, but its up to him.

- DE Shaq Lawson and JJ McCullough are not enrolled. Neither has been cleared by the NCAA yet. We’re still waiting. I’d expect McCullough to RS, but Lawson has enough ability to avoid one, and this may mean that Martin Aiken almost has to play. JJ finishes an online course on the 10th, and cannot get in until that is cleared and submitted. Lawson should hear word this week if we’re lucky. Last day to sign up for classes is the 28th.

- If Brad Pinion is consistent with the snap reception and kick get-off time, he’s starting. You heard it here.- Ammon Lakip is out for at least 4 weeks to recover from the broken foot. If it pushes further he can take a medical RS.

- The IPF construction is on hold due to a problem with the steel delivery. It is being made in Mexico and shipped to Clemson, and they don’t keep enough inventory in stock. This means that CU or the contractor went with the cheapest supplier, and you can get things cheap but not fast, or fast but not cheap. Hopefully it'll still be done by Thanksgiving, otherwise the bowl game.

- The big video board is up on The Hill. The two smaller boards are going up in the WEZ corners right now. New ribbon boards are up from endzone to endzone. The new Daktronics sound system in the stadium is online as well. SUPPOSEDLY John Seketa isn’t picking music this year. Personally I hope somebody plans to finally fire the asshat.