Finishing touches on Maryland prep

CLEMSON - Head coach Dabo Swinney talks about Tajh Boyd's hip, Mike Bellamy's work week and looks ahead to Saturday's game at Maryland.


The following is an edited transcript from Thursday night's interview.

'Tajh Boyd comments...
Swinney: He's great. I don't even know how to explain it. He doesn't have any issues at all. He looks just like he did last week. He's taken every rep. Every rep Tuesday. We ran him Monday. he could have taken every rep Monday, but we just ran him. He took every rep Tuesday, every rep Wednesday, every rep today. He really looks fine. Other than his ego, which has taken a beating from his teammates, other than that, he's all right. It's a miracle.

Anybody else pop up this week, injury-wise?
Swinney: No. In fact, we're probably as healthy as we've been. Joe Gore and Benton. We're as healthy as we've been in a while. One of the objectives this week, for me, was to get them physically, where they felt great. They just physically feel great. That's how we've tried to practice. I backed off of them a little bit, physically, this week, and really made it more about mentally, get yourself ready. They've proven to me they'll fight. They'll bite you. They've played hard. It's been six weeks in a row now, a long camp. We've been going every week since August, and we've still got three games -- three battles, before we get to an open date. This was a good time to try to get them as fresh as we possibly can. We've got fall break Monday and Tuesday. That's going to help them there. Then, we're in that home stretch.

Andre Ellington this week...
Swinney: He's practiced every day. Best week he's had since right before the season. He was really healthy since before we got going against Troy. Wofford, had a good game there. The Auburn game, he pulled his hamstring and couldn't finish. He just gutted out the Florida State game...then Tajh hits him and hurts him up there against Virginia Tech. He had a few weeks there, but he hit his stride last week, I think. That's the best he's felt after a ball game and the first time, in a while, he's been able to practice full speed, every day, take all the reps. He's had a good week, which couldn't come at a better time. We need the second half for him to be workhorse for us. I think he's ready for that.

Dwayne Allen's toe...
Swinney: He's fine.

Do you get antsy sitting there and waiting before night games?
Swinney: We have a routine that we follow before night games. First of all, they'll get to sleep in and get some rest, which is good. They're young people and
"I'm actually glad it's a night game, to be honest with you, as opposed to a noon game up there, because we're having to go so far."

they don't ever get enough sleep. This is a good opportunity for them to get some rest. We'll have a little brunch, then have special teams, offense, defense meetings. Then, they'll go back and have a couple of hours. We'll have a pre-game meal at 3, then walk-thru at 4:10, and then we'll leave at 4:30. It's not as bad as you would think. It's actually good. It's a good change, because we've only had one night game. I think it's a good change of pace for them. I'm actually glad it's a night game, to be honest with you, as opposed to a noon game up there, because we're having to go so far. It give us some time and a chance to get there, kind of get acclimated, kind of get adjusted, have plenty of time to re-focus them, prepare them when we get up there, as opposed to getting there, waking up and having to play. I actually think it's a good thing. It'll be a tough place to go win, that's for sure.

To read more from Thursday night's interview with Swinney, visit the premium message board The Valley:

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