Spring lookahead: Clemson Tigers
2012 record: 11-2 overall, 7-1 ACC
Practice opens: March 6
Spring game date: April 13
2012 in review: The
Tigers took another step toward becoming a nationally relevant program
by knocking off LSU in the Chick-fil-A Bowl and winning 11 games for the
first time since capturing the national title in 1981.
reality facing Dabo Swinney’s program is that it must be more physical,
which we saw in the bowl game. The losses to Florida State and South
Carolina were because Clemson wasn’t physical enough, especially on
There were little concerns on the offensive side, where
quarterback Tajh Boys and Co. set many school records and often scored
Biggest hole to fill: Andre Ellington ran for 1,081 yards last season and gave Clemson excellent balance to its high-octane, no-huddle offense.
order for the Tigers to again set records in the fall and contend for a
national title, they must get similar production at tailback.
McDowell, who carried the ball 83 times for 450 yards and five
touchdowns last season, should get the early nod over Zac Brooks, who
ran 26 times for 125 yards.
Watch out for: Defensive end
Corey Crawford started every game for the Tigers last fall, and he was
in on 47 tackles. But he had just six tackles for a loss of yardage and
registered only one sack.
With Mallicah Goodman gone, Crawford, a 6-foot-5, 270-pound junior, needs to step up and become a dominant pass rusher.