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Tigers Gear Up for Scrimmage

Aug. 19, 1999

CLEMSON, S.C. – Clemson practiced for a little over three hours on the football practice fields behind the Jervey Athletic Center on Thursday afternoon

“The team worked really hard today for three hours and fifteen minutes,” Head Coach Tommy Bowden said following the team’s 16th of 29 preseason practices.

Clemson will practice on Friday afternoon before scrimmaging in Death Valley on Saturday. On Saturday, Clemson will work on the kicking game for an hour before taking part in their second scrimmage of the preseason at Memorial Stadium beginning at 6 p.m. The scrimmage will be closed to the public.

Bowden said he was hoping to see some of his players create separations within their positions at Saturday’s scrimmage. “We have a bunch of guys that are playing around a pack and none that are really stepping up. I hope that none of the guys are content with where they are on the depth chart. Hopefully guys will begin to separate themselves from the pack.”

Willie Simmons sore shoulder is beginning to show improvements as Bowden said Simmons came close on Thursday to returning to the same number of reps that he had before developing the problem.

Bowden’s staff watched film and worked on a game plan for the Marshall game for four hours on Thursday morning. Bowden said that offensive tackle Nathan Gillespie, who suffered a torn ligament in his knee in Tuesday’s scrimmage, will be out until at least the spring. Bowden also said left tackle T.J. Watkins suffered a slight ankle injury and defensive tackle Damonte McKenzie was hampered by a slight pulled hamstring, but both should be back at practice on Friday. Offensive lineman Gary Byrd did not practice and is out with a foot injury.

Note – Junior free safety Robert Carswell (Lithonia, GA) was listed as a preseason candidate for the Jim Thorpe Award. The Jim Thorpe Award is presented annually to the best defensive back in college football. The Jim Thorpe Association in Oklahoma City, which presents the award, announced the preseason players to “Watch List” on Wednesday.