Aug. 15, 2008
Clemson, SC — Clemson had a three-hour practice on Friday morning, then played a team wide Cabbage ball softball tournament in the afternoon in an active day on the practice fields behind the Jervey Athletic Center.
Clemson was scheduled to have two practices on Friday, but Head Coach Tommy Bowden thought it was time for a break in the practice regiment.
“We had a good practice in the morning, then it was time for a break,” said Bowden. “We have been going every day since August 1 so it was time for something different. We have seen some teams from around the country go swimming, some go bowling for a break during cam and we played Cabbage ball. LSU did this last year and it looked like a great team activity during August practice.”
Bowden divided the team into eight 13-player teams with seniors acting as captains of each team. The team went to the Jervey Meadows and four games were played at the same time in the four corners of the field. Cabbage ball is a game that resembles softball. The ball is larger and softer and no gloves are used. Each player gets one pitch and must swing.
The eight-team tournament came down to a contest between Cullen Harper’s team and Michael Hamlin’s team. They are the two returning captains from last year. Hamlin’s team won the championship with an 8-3 victory. They had won earlier by scores of 9-3 and 8-3.
Hamlin’s team had a bit of an advantage considering his shortstop was Clemson All-ACC baseball player Kyle Parker, also a quarterback on the Clemson team. Parker had a triple in each of the first two games and had a sacrifice fly in the championship game, but his key was defense as he repeatedly threw runners out at first base. Xavier Dye hit a home run for Hamlin’s team in the championship game Crezdon Butler hit a home run in the championship game for Harper’s team and made the defensive play of the day when he snared a line drive off the bat of Hamlin, while doing an interview with the Clemson video staff, who tapped the contest to show to the team during its dinner on Friday night.
Bowden had a special guest speaker for the team on Friday morning. Former Clemson All-American Michael Dean Perry was in town. “Michael Dean Perry spoke to the team about giving effort in practice every day. Twenty years ago Coach Ford dismissed Michael Dean from an August scrimmage because he was too good. It is the only time Coach Ford did that. I wanted him to speak to the team about what it takes to be successful. It has some meaning coming from a six-time Pro Bowl player.”
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