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Football Press Conference Audio

Nov. 14, 2000

Press Conference Audio
Football Coach Tommy Bowden 11/14/00 Weekly Press Conference
Football Robert Carswell 11/14/00 Weekly Press Conference

Football Will Merritt 11/14/00 Weekly Press Conference

Tommy Bowden Press Conference Week Prior To South Carolina Game November 14, 2000

Clemson Head Coach Tommy Bowden’s Comments on:

The importance of his team finally having an off-week: “I thought we really needed an off-week after the Florida State game because we came out of that game pretty beat up. It was really important from a physical standpoint but I think it was also important from a mental standpoint. After going through two-a-day practices and then playing ten straight weeks without an open date, it drains you mentally. One of the hardest parts about coaching is getting your team to perform at its peak emotionally every Saturday and having a week off will hopefully help us to replenish our minds.”

How this year’s matchup with South Carolina will be different than the past few years “The biggest difference with the scenario this year is that both teams have already locked up bowl bids. Now the game becomes more a pride factor and it will tell you a great deal about the character of your team. I think both teams will play extremely hard, but only having been here two years, I really do not have a good feel for how we will respond. I think we will play well but we need to make sure that we do not peak early this week in practice but instead on Saturday in the game.”

The status of quarterback Woody Dantzler “Right now we are going day to day with Woody and see how he does. We are pretty convinced now that it is an injury that will require surgery after the bowl game so he is not going to be 100 percent for the South Carolina game or the bowl game. How much he plays on Saturday will depend on how effective he can be at 85 or 90 percent. If he is performing well it will then come down to whether or not he can maintain it. We have been through this scenario before so we will be prepared either way.”

The South Carolina Defense “They are a very good defensive team. They have changed their philosophy a little bit from last year and they have achieved success on defense just as they did last season. They put great athletes on the field and they really put a great deal of pressure on you. They are really playing well and they are playing with a great deal of confidence.”

The difference of this rivalry to other rivalries across the country “When you look at rivalries like Michigan and Ohio State and Texas and Oklahoma, those rivalries are between schools that are in different states. Auburn and Alabama, Florida State and Miami, and Clemson and South Carolina are similar because the schools are in the same state and are close to each other. In this state, Clemson and South Carolina fans work side by side in the same working environment for eight hours a day and 365 days a year. With an instate rivalry such as this, Clemson and South Carolina fans see each other every day and that really intensifies the game itself.”