Fast Five for Florida State

CUTigers publisher Roy Philpott looks ahead to Florida State and what it will take to pull off the upset.

- While most of the attention continues to focus on what's happening at quarterback, the real concern headed to Tallahassee next weekend is what's happening on the offensive line. I like the addition of Jay Guillermo to the starting lineup and I think that continues for the foreseeable future. He has a mean streak and won't be intimidated against the 'Noles. Unfortunately, the Tigers will need more consistent play at left tackle and at other spots to have a chance to upset the No. 1 team in the land. The combination of Cole Stoudt/Deshaun Watson is just fine, but the offensive line needs to step it up these next few weeks. Quit talking about what's happening at quarterback - Clemson is fine there. The offensive line is what concerns me.

- Mark me down as one who believes Kurt Fleming can help this team win games this year. Despite his fumble against S.C. State, there's something about his style of play that this team needs. I'm also hearing there's growing support on the staff to make Jay Jay McCullough a bigger part of this offense going forward. Neither one of these players were on our radar during the offseason, but they are now given their size and physicality. McCullough has always had tremendous athleticism for his size, but it is only now starting to earn the trust of the staff. Stay tuned.

- The football team spent yesterday afternoon working on three different houses for Habitat for Humanity in an Anderson subdivision. It's the second year Dabo Swinney elected to do this instead of practicing during an open date. Here's a video report from the afternoon for those that are interested. Pretty cool if you ask me.

- There are plenty of pundits suggesting Florida State is much more vulnerable this season than what it was a year ago, but I'm not buying it. While I think the loss of defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt is huge, FSU has still recruited as well as any team in the country in the last five years and winning at Doak Campbell Stadium is no easy task. The Seminoles also have one of the top secondaries in the country, not to mention Jameis Winston, last year's Heisman Trophy winner. I agree FSU isn't as good as last year, but it still good enough to embarrass any team it plays this year - including Clemson. Simply put, the Tigers will have to play one of their best games of the Dabo Swinney era to pull off this upset.

- Speaking of Dabo, Clemson's sixth-year head man is 6-1 coming off of an open date in his career. The lone loss was against Miami in the 2010 season. Of course FSU has an open date as well this week, so any advantage the Tigers might gain from having an off-week is negated by the fact the 'Noles get one too. Most of you probably remember last season when FSU had an open date before travelling to Death Valley as well. Still, I like the game plans we've seen out of this staff when given extra time to prepare. Chad Morris emptied out the playbook during Clemson's last trip to Tallahassee as the Tigers held a 28-14 third-quarter lead. The end of the game left plenty to be desired, but Clemson started that night very strong. We'll see if it can finish the job finally in two weeks.


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