In the low post with Winex

SENECA, S.C. - Associate head coach Mike Winiecki has a young corps of big men to work with as Clemson approaches the 2013-14 campaign.

Gone from last season are Devin Booker and Milton Jennings, who were first and third among Tiger scorers, respectively.

Back are sophomores Landry Nnoko and Josh Smith. Jaron Blossomgame, who spent last season recovering from a fractured leg, took a redshirt.

Clemson also added a pair of big men during the spring signing period in Sidy Djitte and Ibrahim Djambo, a junior college transfer with two years of eligibility remaining.

"Book's over in France and Milt's in Italy. They're not walking back through that door. It's kind of exciting," Winiecki said. "They're excited. We talk about it a lot. It's not anything given to them. They're going to be working for it, because we have a bunch of guys that can do different things."

Winiecki discusses each of the five players that will play the 4 and 5 positions this winter.


"He's kind of a glue guy. He really gets the guys, pulling them to shoot extra. We only get to work with them for two hours per week. Even in the summer and things, he was the guy getting guys over to the gym and shooting extra."

"He's been remarkably energetic. You haven't really seen a physical -- last year, you saw him limp a little bit. You kind of saw that coming into the workouts and things like that. When you talk to him after workouts and things, you don't even notice, unless you look at the little bump on his leg where the screws are in and the rod."

"He's a hybrid. He's going to be a 3, 4 [and] 4, 3. He's a guy that can be that stretch four, a little bit undersized. He's put on a lot of weight, good weigh. He looks great. He's around 215, solidly built, can really rebound the ball. It's more a 4, 3-type of player. In a motion, he can play different positions. He's been working on his ball-handling and shooting.

"Not as much solid post-up moves, it's more facing the basket and driving, being more of a creator, driving it and scoring or driving and kick [out] to other people in our dribble, drive stuff."


"He just kind of brings you some very great enthusiasm for the game. He has to get a little bit stronger still, but he can make 3s. He's very skilled."

"He could get away with some things in junior college that he can't get away with right here, like trying to hold a guy off and get a rebound, things like that. Now, a guy's pushing on him that's a little bigger. He has to do that to be really effective. The best thing he does is shoot the ball. He really shoots the ball well. He's not afraid to take shots. He's hit some trail 3s already. He's been kind of a breath of fresh air. He really appreciates having a chance to play."


"If you see him, he looks 6-10, 240. We're not fudging any of that. He's physical built."

"He doesn't have great, super lift when he gets into his shot, but he's wider. He carves out space to get his shot off. He's kind of in between Josh and Landry in that situation. He's a very good rebounder. If I chart how many times you box out and put a body on someone, he's going to be up in the 90 to 100. He likes physically hitting people. He's going to be a guy that's going to do that more this year."

"He really had a good individual workout the day before we started practice. He's been good, really working hard. He has a good attitude about things."

"With Sidy, he's a formidable guy coming in, so it's going to be a good competition for that 5-spot."


"He's been good. I think it really helped for him and Josh to really play a lot of minutes, probably about 20 minutes a game over in Italy. Both of them averaged double-figure rebounds, really stressed that, because with Milt and Book leaving, they were our two leading rebounders. We have to fill that in. I think, point-wise, they'll be fine. They're not scoring as much as those guys, but I don't think that's going to be their role right now in their careers. But they can score around the basket."

"He's up to around 245, almost 250 right now. He's progressing well. He's getting more confidence. I tell those guys, after their freshmen year, this is their biggest time to get improvement, between their freshman and sophomore, just because you're at the top of the learning curve right now. You're not going to hear anything different from the coaches."

. "I told him that [he] should average double-figures this year. Should be averaging 10 a game, a couple of free throws…running the court, because he's really athletic, can sprint down the court and follow. He's long, has like a 7-4 reach [so] offensive rebound put backs. You add all that and you should average 10 a game with the minutes he's going to play. He's embracing that. Always have to tell him, ‘Impose your will.' He's almost too nice a guy."


"Right now, it's really exciting to see Josh. He had a great Italy trip. No one talks about him, but he's 6-8, 260 and he's not afraid to throw his weight around. He's probably a little more physical than Landry right now. Low center of gravity, not as athletic as Landry, but he has a good skill set. Really good passer out of the post, finding people. He had a couple of assists in the 4-on-4 drill, I don't know how many guys in the ACC can do it at that position, the 5-position -- kick out for 3s."

"I think he just had a good feel. Sometimes, you know guys know how to play, and he knows how to play. He has to make up for his lack of athleticism at this level with his skill and his smarts. He's gaining confidence making 17-footers at a really good clip in practice. If he can do that for us, kind of inside-out -- 17 feet, not out to 3 -- and rebound the ball, that would be great."

"Josh, in one of the last games, ran the court, they dumped it back and he dunked it. You would have thought that we won the ACC Championship. All the guys on the bench were so excited. All of the booster were like, what's going on? He's feeling good about himself." Top Stories