Jarrett making huge impact

CLEMSON - Grady Jarrett is third among Clemson defenders with 13 tackles. Not too shabby for a defensive tackle.

What makes it even more impressive is that nine other Tiger defenders have logged more snaps than the 66 he's played through the first two games of the season.

The strong start to Jarrett's junior year shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone. He was named co-MVP of last year's defense by the Clemson coaches.

"I just feel like I'm an all-around better player," Jarrett said. "Last year…I feel like I got better as the year went along last year. I just feel like I get better as this year goes along, like I did last year.

"[I'm] just working, not being satisfied [and] trying to get better everyday."

For the most part of the 2013 calendar year, if not all of it, Jarrett has been entrenched as one of the starters inside Clemson's defensive line.

"I just come out and do my best everyday. I let [coaches] handle who they want to start, who they want to put out on the field," Jarrett said. "I just do my part, studying everyday, going hard on the field. That's about all I can do, do my part. I have no say in who they put out on the field. [I] just take care of my job."

Part of that job description includes serving as a leader on the Clemson defense. Jarrett is one of a handful of juniors along a defensive line that doesn't have a single senior.

On Thursday night, they'll head to Raleigh to play N.C. State. Things didn't turn out so well the last time Jarrett and his classmates visited Carter-Finley Stadium.

"We can't get caught up in what happened up there two years ago. It's just a whole new team," he said. "We [can] just control what we can control, keep our goals in our mind. Don't let the atmosphere affect you. There's no better atmosphere than Death Valley. I don't think that's on anybody's mind."

And, regarding last year's old fashioned, WAC-like shoot-out, it's the same kind of mindset.

"Last year's game has nothing to do with this year's game, just like the year before last has nothing to do with this game," Jarrett said. "It's a new team, [a] new year, so that really has no affect on this game. And it's a whole new offense we're going against, a whole new personnel."

CUTigers.com Top Stories