Auburn game coaches corner

AUBURN, Ala. - Dabo Swinney knows a little bit more about his team after Saturday night's 27-24 loss to No. 15 Auburn.

THE RIGHT STUFF: Before the game, the Clemson head coach believed the Tigers had the "ingredients to be a good team." Swinney's feeling was validated through the majority of this season's first road game.

"We have not been tested yet with adversity or play on the road yet," he said. "I saw some good things tonight."

Clemson jumped out to a 17-0 lead and responded after falling behind 24-17. The visitors responded with a 9-play, 77-yard scoring drive after the lead change.

"It is not easy to come into this place," Swinney said. "We physically imposed our will in the fourth quarter to get that last touchdown. We made some great runs and great blocks with their backs up against the wall.

"When the adversity came, they stood up and did not wait. And that is a good sign to me."

TOUGH THIRD PERIOD: The Auburn Tigers roared with a trio of touchdowns in the third quarter.

Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele shouldered the blame.

"We've got to do a better job as coaches of helping them make sure we don't have quarters like we had in the third quarter," he said.

Along with a 78-yard touchdown, Cameron Newton hit on two other long passes.

"It was all three very, very different things," Steele said. "One of them was an over route. Another was a double move. One was just, I thought we were there and were going to make the play and just didn't make it."

Newton hit Darvin Adams twice on completion of 34 and 35 yards.

Steele was pleased with the overall effort of his unit.

"I thought the whole defense really played hard and fought hard," he said. "I thought there were some really big hits out there. We tackled, for the most part."

Another issue from the quarter was specifically mentioned.

"Probably the problem we had—that rocket sweep when they line up and get you. They motion those guys across," Steele said. "You've got to fix those things up perfect because that's a lot of speed coming a cross there."

A lot of speed—courtesy of Onterio McCalebb. One was a 12-yard touchdown around the left-end. The former Clemson recruiting target rushed for 81 yards.

LONG, SUSTAINING DRIVES: Offensive coordinator Billy Napier knew the importance of keeping the Auburn offense off the field.

Clemson took 12 plays, 76 yards and just over 6 minutes to score the game's first touchdown.

The ACC Tigers won the time possession battle, 34:20 to 25:40 and ran 21 more plays.

"They did what we asked them to do. Show up compete and be tough, not only physically, but mentally," Napier said. "You just feel for your kids. You try to put them in position to be successful. There's a great group of guys in that locker room." Top Stories