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Clemson Escapes the Storm Clouds

Aug. 24, 2004

Clemson, SC – Clemson held a two-and-half hour practice on Tuesday and it was a miracle the Tigers got the entire practice in. There were ominous skies surrounding the Jervey Athletic Center practice fields for the last hour of practice, but the rain did not come until after the team completed its conditioning run.

“We were very fortunate to get through the entire practice,” said Head Coach Tommy Bowden. “The lightning was just over six miles away according to our weather system,and if it gets inside the six miles we have to come off the field. But, we had good enthusiasm and a good practice. We got a lot done.”

Bowden said all his practices are focused towards preparation for the Wake Forest game. “We haven’t had any problems with the team’s attention for this first game. They defeated us easily last year, so our team has a lot of respect for Wake Forest. I think the team is very focused.”

Bowden complimented the performance of the secondary after practice and also pointed out the play of some freshmen. “Tye Hill has missed a couple of days due to a turf toe injury, but he is back and full strength and continues to improve. Eric Sampson was out today with a shoulder injury, but it is not serious. But, for the most part, the secondary has stayed healthy and has really played well as a unit. We have some experience back there and that is important. Our corners have played very well and when you have good cover corners it allows you to do a lot on defense.

“One first-year freshman who should be in the mix is wide receiver La’Donte Harris. He has really played well and will probably play this year. He could be a starter on some special teams because he has a thick, durable body.” Bowden also said that freshman tackles Barry Richardson and Akeem Robinson continue to do well.

“Michael Collins was in a green jersey and participated in more plays than he has in two weeks. At first we ruled him out of the first game, but he might be able to play, we will just have to see how he progresses.” Bowden also said after practice that reserve defensive tackle Chris McDuffie would not play against Wake Forest due to a suspension.