Recurring theme

CLEMSON - When it comes to talking football, there aren't many things that are less exciting to discuss than offensive line play.

But talk of the offensive line has been a recurring theme during this month's post-practice question and answer sessions, and for good reason.

You know the deal by now. Two returning starters, a converted defensive tackle, as many as two freshmen starting…all the stuff that's been discussed ad nauseum.

On Monday, offensive coordinator Chad Morris was asked how comfortable he feels with the line.

"How comfortable do I feel? I feel comfortable, but in the same sense, we've got to get other guys ready," he said. "We've got to at least have seven or eight to get ready and get going. A lot is going to depend on where Giff Timothy is by game week. It's kind of hard to tell now.

"We feel like he's going to be back, but I don't know if he's going to be in a situation where he's ready to play."

When Timothy went down with a left knee injury earlier this month, Joe Gore was the immediate answer for the starting right tackle job.

The coaching staff decided they needed to make a change. Shaq Anthony, who'd primarily worked at left tackle, was moved over to the right-side of the line.

"We thought Joe would be the guy ready to go. Being a young guy as he is he hit a wall, as a lot of freshmen do," Morris said. "The thing that's impressed me about that is Shaq Anthony has come in. His athleticism has really helped us out. I've been pleased. Shaq's had a good camp."

Anthony, a redshirt freshman like Gore, hit the proverbial wall during camp. But, according to Morris, he shook it off.

"I talked about him early -- he kind of waivered there the middle of camp. We really had to strain him really hard," Morris said. "He realized he's going to be on board or he's going to be off board. He decided he needed to be on board."

STADIUM SCRIMMAGE: Last Saturday marked the final full contact stadium scrimmage before the season opener against Auburn.

"I thought Saturday's scrimmage was probably our best. The last three days have probably been our best, from an offensive standpoint," Morris said. "There were some good things. Both the ones and the twos did a lot of good things. Moved the football and made good decisions with the football."

There were a few "costly turnovers" on Saturday, namely interceptions.

"They were totally avoidable, shouldn't have happened…it was better than what it has been, and that's a plus," Morris said.

AUBURN GAME PREP: Monday marked the beginning of game prep for Auburn.

Preparation for the Tigers hasn't included much from last year's edition. Auburn parted ways with Ted Roof, who is now the defensive coordinator at Penn State.

Former Georgia defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder is now on board with Gene Chizik.

Before return to the SEC, VanGorder coached linebackers for the Jacksonville Jaguars, spent one season as the head coach at Georgia Southern and coached linebackers for the Atlanta Falcons for a season before taking over as defensive coordinator in 2008.

"We've been watching a lot of video, a whole bunch. You name it, we've been watching it, as far back as you want to go," Morris said. Top Stories