Bowden's Sunday Teleconference

<img src=> Clemson head coach Tommy Bowden met with the media Sunday afternoon for his weekly regular season press conference.

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What do you take away from Saturday's win?
Bowden: What we did defensively was pretty impressive against anybody. You know, 11 sacks and -20 yards rushing, those were some things that have never been done around here before. Regardless of the competition, that's a pretty impressive statistic. And then the other thing is the number of players that contributed defensively. It was all four ends. All of sudden it was Cory Groover making a play, Anthony Waters making a play, Jamaal Fudge making a play. It's not so much that we won, it's how we won it defensively. I don't care if we were playing a 1-AA opponent. If we are going to have any success at the end of the season, it's going to be initiated by defensive tempo. Then you can afford not to play well offensively for a stretch and still be in the game. Those are some things we'll take- as far as how we won the game, defensively we turned it up a notch, the number of contributors, hopefully a little bit of confidence, and 200 yards rushing. Our competition is obviously going to change against Maryland. I know they are struggling on offense, but defensively they aren't.

What still might concern you after Saturday's big win?
Bowden: The slow start offensively concerns me. We are at the stage now, defense- can we set the tempo? The stretch we made last year, the defense showed up every week. And we've showed up every game the last four weeks and we've showed up every game defensively, but we kind of put the hammer down (Saturday) Then, Charlie threw a deep ball high over the middle again. Going into the season, he's got to understand a sense of urgency with that. He played a good game other than that, but that's kind of one of the cardinal sins. We can't do that with the guys we play here on out.

From a technical standpoint with Charlie, does he need to adjust anything he's doing?
Bowden: No, you just can't throw it high over the middle. The one that bounced off Curtis' hands, I can't do anything about that. There's one glaring mistake. That type of error needs to be corrected.

Can you talk a little more about Michael Collins and his development?
Bowden: I brought it to the team after the game. Michael hadn't gotten a lot of attention because he hadn't done much, and we hadn't asked him to do much. Gosh, I think he had like 40-something yards after the catch. He's a very aggressive player and a hard worker. He's very unselfish. Whatever his role is is what he's prepared to do. It's just good to see a guy rewarded that. The coaches are just real happy for him. He's been a constant for our team. He takes an extra burden on his shoulder and rises to the occasion.

An updates on injuries?
Tim Bourret: Ben Hall was the only new injury. He's got an arm bruise. It shouldn't be anything major. Bowden: (Stuckey) said he was 90% (during warm-ups), but I think a lot of that was adrenaline. We'll meet with the support staff in the morning at 7.

Did Duane Coleman and Reggie Merriweather prove something to you?
Bowden: I think the way they performed was pretty much what we've seen. Hard-nosed tough running, they both have shown signs of that. The way they ran didn't show me anything I hadn't see. I was glad we could continue to give them at bats. Top Stories