Eyes on the prize

CLEMSON - Stephone Anthony flirted with the idea of turning professional after his junior year, but a trusted confidant encouraged him to think otherwise.

Mom wanted him to get his diploma. Honoring her request, Anthony will graduate with a degree in Sociology.

"That was definitely a factor in all of it, after talking to my mom especially," Anthony said. "You know mom wants that education."

On the field, the area where most everyone else is concerned with, Anthony was strong last season. He finished first among Clemson defenders with 131 tackles. A starter in all 13 games, he was second with 802 snaps.

He also had 13.5 tackles for loss, four sacks, five pass breakups and an interception.

"There's a lot more that I can do," Anthony said. "There's always room for improvement. I'm just trying to get better every day, that's it."

To help get better in 2014, Anthony has taken up yoga. Along with other defensive players like Robert Smith, Ebenezer Ogundeko and Korrin Wiggins, Anthony said there are "about 10 of us" who go to Fike for the class, which meets three times a week.

Chandler Catanzaro got the ball rolling on the trend.

"I feel like he set standard for it," Anthony said. "Watching Catman and how he improved his flexibility, I feel like guys really took to it after that."

Whatever it takes to reach that ultimate goal of a national title, that's why Anthony has taken up the class. After all, it's his last go-round at Clemson.

Hard to believe it was just three years ago when Anthony announced that he would sign with Clemson on National Signing Day.

"It's fast, happened fast," he said. "It seems like just yesterday I walked in here. I think I'm ready for it. Whether I'm not it is coming. Time doesn't wait for anybody."

That's why Anthony took the following approach this spring.

"Just go out, have fun. [I'm] blessed with the opportunity. I'll just be myself, that's it, get my guys around me right and let's play ball," he said.

And folks are certainly excited to see how well the Tigers' plays ball this fall.

"We feel real good about the personnel that we have back there," Anthony said. "It's about what we want to be. Who do we want to be? I think we want to identify ourselves.

"If we're willing to put the work in, we can dominate this game, so it's all about the work put in."

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