On the mend

CLEMSON - For the first time since injuring his meniscus during practice earlier this month, Gifford Timothy returned to the field on Monday.

The redshirt sophomore from Delaware, who won the starting right tackle job during the spring, had secured the spot through the first part of preseason camp.

Before week one was over, Timothy was sidelined with a bum left knee.

He underwent surgery on the 10th. Ten days later, Timothy was on the field in a green practice jersey, not allowed to participate in any contact drills.

"Right now, it's just been working on range of motion," he said. "Whenever we started right after surgery a couple of weeks ago, it was just getting range of motion and getting the quad strengthened so I didn't lose any muscle in the quad, and just keeping the hamstring loose with stretching.

"Lately, the past couple of days, it's just been working on sprinting and trying to work on a little bit of side to side movement. It's been coming along pretty well. I'm pleased with how it's been."

It certainly was frustrating those first couple of days but Timothy remained optimistic. "I try to look at the plus sides," he said. "I've been able to work on my upper body strength, get stronger up there every day, while I couldn't do any running.

"I've always looked at the plus side of it and tried to see how it can influence me. Really, it could be a blessing in disguise. Hopefully, it will work out."

Timothy thinks he could be ready to be a full practice participant by Thursday. If unable to make a full return by next Monday or Tuesday, he probably won't play against Auburn.

The plan, for now, is to have him back in time for Auburn.

"It just really depends on it heals up. It's been healing faster than I expected, so I'm really pleased with how it's coming," Timothy said. "Hopefully, that will happen."

Most of the pain has subsided.

"Not a whole lot of soreness, just some stiffness, but it's feeling really good," Timothy said.

And that sounds like good news for

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