TOURE FRANCIS: Who is Sergio Gilliam?

Who is Sergio Gilliam? For beginners, he is the starting cornerback of the Clemson Tigers. <BR>

Here is part of a conversation I had with Sergio Gilliam recently, in an exclusive interview for

A junior orginally out of Greer High school, Gilliam is looking to take full advantage of the opportunity given to him by the departure of former Tiger corner Justin Miller.

"With him (Miller) not being there, people will automatically look to see who's going to be in that spot. I feel it's a great opportunity to let the people who know me and the people who don't, enjoy my God given abilities when they watch the Clemson Tigers play," said the rising junior.

When asked what type of player he feels he is, Gilliam answers, "A playmaker, a versatile athlete who will make something out of anything. When I'm doing what I'm supposed to do, the job gets done. If things aren't going the way I need them to go, it's probably something I'm not doing."

Gilliam, a 6'3 185 pound corner with good speed, says his weight and tackling are his only weaknesses right now. "But that's why the season isn't tomorrow and that's what practice is for. My body is coming along as I mature and as it responds to how I conduct my life and pretty soon everything will catch up. I just work with it and do what I'm supposed to do in the weight room. Tackling, that's just me using the proper technique and mentally focusing on making the play. Pretty soon, neither of them will be weaknesses."

When asked about new defensive coordinator Vic Koenning, Gilliam says he seems to be bringing a strong knowledge of the game.

"He talks to you a lot on and off the field and he talks to you about school. When you get on the field with him, you know it's football time. He's always talking about going 100% through the play and focuses on you doing the right thing," said Gilliam.

In describing practice, Gilliam says everyone is trying to adjust to the new defense. "It's a new scheme and a different focus, but after awhile, everything will come together. That's why you study film, to learn and to see your mistakes. Also, People like Tye and Fudge understand that this is their last year and that a lot of people are watching them, including us younger players so I think everybody's going to be on the same page," said the Greer native.

When asked what he feels he will do against opponents like Georgia Tech's Calvin Johnson, Gilliam replies, "Everybody makes plays, or at least gets the opportunity to. Your mindset has to be that you're the better player and have the most opportunity to make the play. In any type of battle you have to realize you're going against someone and that you could potentially lose. If you really understand that, you'll do what you need to do to win," added Gilliam. Top Stories