The truth shall set you free

SUNSET, S.C. - Defensive ends coach Marion Hobby laughed when he said it, but there was probably a degree of truth to his statement.

Quality defensive ends deal with more than one blocker.

"I always tell them, if you're not getting double-teamed, then you're not really good as a defensive lineman," he said.

The third-year Clemson assistant hopes that his group, particularly the junior trio of Tavaris Barnes, Victor Beasley and Corey Crawford, could be in store for more double-teams in 2013.

"I'm expecting those guys to take hold and lead, lead by example," Hobby said.

Though Clemson lost just one defensive end from last year's team, there are several inexperienced players, too.

Aside from Kevin Dodd, who logged 87 snaps as a freshman last season, the rest of the defensive ends, Martin Aiken, Shaquille Lawson, Ebenezer Ogundeko and Dane Rogers, have never played a down of college football.

Corey Crawford is the only Clemson defensive end with starting experience.
"It's always good to have a veteran line, but we're still young," Hobby said. "We still have only one starter at defensive end.

"Sometimes, it's easy to come off the bench. When you have to go in for the first play through the last play, you're the guy. The heart beats a little bit different. So we'll see how those guys play."

Most eyes will be pointed towards Beasley, last year's team leader in sacks.

"I thought Vic had a good year," Hobby said. "I think Vic can have a better year. Vic's got to become an every down player. He just can't be a third-down player."

Beasley's quest to improve in 2013 began during winter workouts, continued through spring practice and summer conditioning. Dabo Swinney praised him during the spring.

Hobby had good things to say earlier this month at the Clemson media golf outing.

"I don't think he's pleased with what his season was last year. In a couple of the big games, he didn't do a lot of things that he should have done. I think that plays on him," Hobby said. "I catch him watching tape of last year's games."

Hobby added, "They say embarrassment builds character. Sometimes, you get embarrassed [and] you go to work a little bit different.

"I think [Beasley] ran into some guys that he was better than and I think he ran into some matches that he had to work at. But coming in with that mindset that I've got to work everyday, I've got to go hard every time, I think that is going to be a big difference with him."

And that could play a big part in making Clemson's defense better in 2013. Top Stories