Quick hits with Chad Morris

CLEMSON - Offensive coordinator Chad Morris discusses the Syracuse game.

You’re a little thin at running backs. Is it at the point where you tell C.J. Fuller to put on a helmet and pads if you needed him?
Morris: I think at this point you go with what you got. Doesn’t mean that it’s not going to happen with us getting Tyshon Dye back, at least getting him back into more of a roll in practice, and to see how he responds to contacts in practice. I think before you get to that point you kind of pump the brakes a little bit on it. It’s just one of those years, it’s unfortunate when we lost Zac Brooks and now losing Adam Choice. We’ve been very fortunate around here for the past three years with avoiding injuries for the most part. I mean you have your typical injuries, but it seems like this year is a little different, especially on the offensive side of the ball. We’ve had a few guys we were counting on that have missed extended playing time, but that’s football. You go with it.

The hope is that Tyshon Dye will play this Saturday?
Morris: Well, he’s going to practice, so it’s hard to say at this point. If it goes like we think it could go, you hope he could play some. How much? I don’t know, he hasn’t played football in two years, but he could provide us with some depth to a position, that at the start of the year was pretty much the strength of our offense. Now we are kind of depleted.

If not this Saturday, you’ve got 12 days until next Saturday, is it more possible then?
Morris: Yeah, I fully expect to see him back in the mix, eventually. If it goes as planned, we hope to get him some playing time this week. Again, there’s a lot of moving parts to things. But yeah, we are excited about getting him back.

How much more confident do you feel in this offense after Saturday? Is there frustration that they aren’t putting up as many points?
Morris: Well, you look at the last two weeks. You’ve played two really good defenses, we knew they were top ten defense. You have to give those guys credit. I thought they tackled really well. Obviously, we want to put up points, that’s our job, and it doesn’t matter who’s out there. When we aren’t doing that, I mean yeah, there is some frustration, there is some sense of urgency. These guys have pride; they have a lot of pride in what they do. The coaches take pride in what they do. We’ve got a great plan coming in. It’s all about creating momentum.

With all that being said, it’s got to be satisfying to see the way Clemson defense is playing too, right?
Morris: There’s no question, it’s extremely gratifying to know we have a group of guys on that side of the ball. They’re playing as well as any other group in the country. We see them everyday. Everyday. I know what other teams have to go against. I’m just glad they’re on our team. You try and tell the guys you don’t have to be perfect, we have good defense, but we can’t make stupid mistakes that put us behind. Because of that, there are different trains of thought as you call plays. You try to play the odds. We are going to be who we are, and we are fortunate enough to have a great defense.

Your receivers made a couple of pass-breakups on Cole’s throws. What did you see on Stoudt’s decisions there?
Morris: I thought Cole played much better than the week before. I thought he made the right throws at the right time, like the outside ball to Mike Williams. We missed a few earlier that I thought we could have had early. I think there was a couple balls that obviously Cole wish he had had back, where he might have been a little late on a throw, but Stanton Seckinger did a really good job of breaking up one, and Artavis Scott did an unbelievable job of breaking up another one. Those are just things where it’s all about a timing issue. Again, you’re looking at guy who hasn’t really had game experience reps since Florida State, prior to the week before. I think Cole is going to continue to get better with game experience and his decision making improved from week to week.

Is he reading through his progressions the way you thought?
Morris: He’s obviously gotta get better in some areas and he’s gotta anticipate some throws a little bit more, a little quicker, and he sees that. I thought he did a good job on several of his throws, like across the middle to Mike.

Can you say something about the offensive line and how they played the other day?
Morris: I thought they played well. Isaiah Battle probably played his best game, which was good to see. There’s no question with that. David Beasley continues to play the most consistent out of everyone we have. We’ve found those five guys and they’re playing well together right now.

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