Sunday kicked off ACC Media Days, which is basically just a chance for the conference's coaches and stars to get together and say how much they are ready for the season. While the ACC is not getting too much hype from the nation like the SEC Media Days received, I think it's safe to say that both events were basically a lot of optimism and coach-speak, with a few memorable quotes thrown in. Yesterday, we heard from our very own Cole Stoudt and Vic Beasley. Coach Swinney will speak today at 5:30. So, I'm going to wade through what we've heard and see if I can gain any new knowledge from it.
What We Learned About Clemson
Vic Beasley seemed high on Cordrea Tankersly, which is good. Tankersly looks to be a big contributor at CB this year, and while I doubt Vic would say anything negative about his teammate in an interview, I like that Vic pointed out this kid's hard work.
The 2nd thing is that Cole Stoudt may be our key to breaking the streak vs South Carolina. Back in November, as I watched our Tigers take the field before the game in Columbia, I saw Chad Kelly jawing with the student section, and I loved it. I loved the fire and passion he had. As I rode back to my brother's house (he's a UGA grad and USC law grad, so I hear a lot of SEC talk) after the game, I tried to wrap my head around what I just saw and how exactly Clemson has dropped 5 in a row to that school. I then thought back to Chad Kelly's pregame antics, and thought that if he starts next year, there would be no way he lets the Gamecocks beat us. I had confidence in him. Flash forward to the week after the spring game when Chad is kicked off the team, and I began wondering if Cole has that same fire or not.
This weekend, I saw something in Cole that is not Chad Kelly's swag, but gives me hope. Stoudt is a very laid backed, relaxed guy. Over the past few years, Clemson plays nervous against South Carolina. We're anxious to beat them and it leads to turnovers. This leads to us trying to score on a big play and then a few interceptions later the game is over. Playing like this against a top 10 team gets you beat. With Stoudt, I see a pretty chill guy. Between the flow, the light beard, and his overall attitude; I see a guy who won't panick. I think we'll see consistency with Cole, regardless of if he's playing Georgia or Georgia State.
So, to shorten this up: Vic thinks his teammates work hard and Cole is relaxed. Oh, and Coach Swinney likes Krispy Kreme doughnuts. So, don't be surprised is Greg Schafer of 'Cuse tries to distract Dabo by throwing glazed donuts his way instead of F-Bombs.