Stoudt assumes control in Clemson

Cole Stoudt chimes in as his first career start for the Clemson football program looms in just over one month.

In meeting with the media for the first time in preparation for the 2014 season, Clemson senior quarterback Cole Stoudt addressed a handful of topics Sunday at the ACC Football Kickoff:

Tough act to follow... how do you do it?
Stoudt: Well, the seniors last year they have all set a standard for Clemson. After last year, we all talk about how the standard was set. So now it's all turn to go beyond that standard. They set a goal and we want to go above it. Even though we've lost a few guys, we still have many veterans on the team that have been at this for four years. We are all very comfortable and we are ready to go out and have a really good year."

What is your mind set playing between the hedges in your first career start?
Stoudt: I've always prepared the same way for every game. Get in there, go in the film room and study like I have for the last three years. Back then I've always prepared myself like I'm going to be the starter and so it's the same thing this year. Constantly do more work and developing the team keep the guys going as a leader.

"After last year, we all talk about how the standard was set. So now it's all turn to go beyond that standard."

What's it like being handed the keys to this offensive machine?
Stoudt: It's exciting. It's a huge thrill ride constantly. There's always something new every single day. I've had a blast. I've never been more excited in my entire life. I'm working hard trying to make myself better every single day. It's been fun. Can't wait for the season to start.

What can you say about this offense under you? How would you describe yourself as a quarterback?
Stoudt: I'm ready to do the best I possibly I can. I'm very comfortable with the situation I'm in. I've always been a relaxed kind of guy and operates the system and just plays the best I possibly can. The past couple of years every time I went in I always maximized my opportunities. last year I did that best- setting a couple of records for accuracy and passing efficiency but I also have to keep getting better. I go in there and have some fun with it - relax and go with my reads one at a time and just operate the system.


Cole Stoudt completed 79.7 percent of his passes last year for five touchdowns and no interceptions. (Roy Philpott)
Last year you came in as a favorite, this year you come in as an underdog. How do you feel about your chances to win the conference this year?
Stoudt: Same chance everyone else has. You still have to go out the perform and do the best you can. That's something every team strives far. I'm confident and everyone else on every other team is confident too I'm sure.

In skills and drills, what have you seen from this defense?
Stoudt: Very impressed. Vic [Beasley] has been doing a great job. Stephone [Anthony] and Grady too. It's going to be a very exciting year for this defense. They've been pushing us every single day too. They are constantly getting us better. It's a two-way deal. They've been improving a lot this summer.

Can you give us insight what kind of extra prep goes into the South Carolina game?
Stoudt: It's just like any rivalry game you have. Everyone wants to win. Everybody wants to prepare more. We are going to prepare for them. We are going to prepare for them hard. We are going to do simple things better than anyone. The past few years losing to them has not sat well with us. Hopefully we can turn it around this year. It's not something that we can focus on every single day because we have Georgia and Florida State and everybody else on the schedule first.


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