Clemson Football Notebook

CLEMSON – While it gives the team an extra week to prepare for formations and plays it might see from N.C. State, a week off also afforded the Clemson football team to get back to basics.

"We just did some fundamental work because we had some extra time," Tigers head coach Tommy Bowden said after Sunday evening's practice. "So we put full pads on (last week) and did some work that you traditionally can't do."

The off weekend also allowed Bowden to watch all the football he desired. And he didn't let the opportunity pass. He watched just about every game possible from noon until around midnight.

"I just watched nothing but football," he said. "I enjoyed it."

He also watched the Wolfpack win a game they had no business winning at Georgia Tech Thursday night.

But the outcome really didn't matter to Bowden one way or the other.

"I thought about that, but I don't think it makes any difference," he said. "I think coming off the win, they'll have a lot more confidence then coming off of a loss."

Big Plays
Regardless whether the Wolfpack were coming off a loss or win, one area he knows his team has to get better at is creating big plays, be it on offense or defense.

When the Tigers get to the red zone this year, they have scored every single time, with nine of them being touchdowns. That number is near the top in the country, but the problem is they haven't gotten to that area nearly enough.

Thus, scoring from other places is essential.

"We are hitting it at 100 percent, but that means we're not getting anything outside (the red zone)," Bowden said. "I think they will eventually come, but they haven't – the long catch and the long run and the long screen, something like that. That's what I'm referring to.

"We're leading the ACC in with 100 percent and we're scoring more touchdowns (inside the red zone) than Virginia Tech, so Virginia Tech is obviously scoring them from somewhere else (like) defensively or the kicking game."

Quick hits
The only injury that may prevent a player from playing Thursday that isn't already listed as out is Christian Capote, who is finally off crutches and out of a cast. However, his ankle injury still has him listed as doubtful. … Bowden will have his weekly press conference Monday rather than Tuesday due to the Thursday night game. Top Stories