Zimmerman optimistic about Saturday

CLEMSON - Dawson Zimmerman was stunned that his final punt against Florida State did not get blocked by Lamrcus Joyner.

Zimmerman went through the rest of the game under the assumption that it was.

"I didn't even know that we had the ball," he said. "I didn't know that they had thrown a penalty.

"It really hurt."

The ball was snapped low and to the left -- one of the worst placements for a right-footed punter.

"As a right-footed punter, you have to basically bend down to the left and put it back up," Zimmerman said. "It's just an added motion."

The punt, though it traveled 49 yards, was waved off by a 15-yard penalty for roughing the punter.

"I literally have no idea how the ball went 49 yards, because there was no follow through," Zimmerman said. "My foot was on the ball for, like, a tenth of a second."

A little woozy after the hit, he hobbled off the field with a hyper-extended right knee.

"I've got some swelling on it, but I think, hopefully, by the time Saturday, the swelling will be down," Zimmerman said. "It's pretty much just bruised and strained on the patella tendon," he said.

His status for the 6 p.m. game at Virginia Tech is officially "questionable" as of Monday afternoon.

The senior from Lawrenceville, Ga. will sit out practice on Monday and Tuesday before trying to go on Wednesday.

"We're just waiting for the swelling to go down so I can get fully extended and have the leg pop and have it be fine," he said.

But Zimmerman is "pretty optimistic" about playing against the Hokies.

"I'm walking pretty good. I think it's just a matter of the swelling going down," he said.

Virginia Tech's brand of special teams is nothing new to Zimmerman.

"Because, based on this week, Virginia Tech may be coming to block one as well... Beamerball is something, as a punter, I know all about," he said. "It's just one of those things, I'm confident that our line can get everything fixed that needs to be fixed, and we can have a good game on special teams."

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