Shatley paves the way

CLEMSON - Tyler Shatley helped pave the way for a 320-yard rushing performance by the Clemson running backs on Saturday night.

Not bad for an offensive line comprised of three first-year starters.

Shatley and fellow guard David Beasley were on the field for every offensive play against Auburn. Gifford Timothy, the third first-year starter on the offensive front, missed the Tigers' final offensive snap of the game.

"We showed that we are ready to play," Shatley said. "We're not just going to be the weak part of the team. We can definitely work well together and, hopefully, we can continue and get better."

Timothy was the only starter along the offensive line who did not play every snap. The first five entered the Auburn game expecting to play every snap.

"I was pretty confident with our first five, that we could get the job done," Shatley said. "Even our second guys, I wouldn't be afraid if they came in."

But it's always nice to work alongside the same guys.

"Giff and Dalton are the guys I practice with everyday. It helps being in there with them," Shatley said. "If somebody else came in there, I don't think we'd miss a beat."

The 6-foot-3, 295-pound redshirt junior thought he performed better as a run blocker on Saturday.

"It's an easier thing to pick up," he said. "The guy's right in front of you. He's not making moves, trying to get around you. I think it's easier to pick up. That's what, I think, I did better at."

But that's been the case for a while. Heading into his debut as an offensive lineman, Shatley knew the areas that needed refinement -- pass blocking, taking better steps as a run blocker and improved hand placement.

"It kind of showed itself more in a game. In practice, it's broken up and you can focus on the little things," he said. "The game, you've just got to put it all together. That's where stuff kind of shows up more." Top Stories