Clemson Football Notebook

CLEMSON – Because things aren't going quite as planned, everyone seems to be looking for the reason why.

And rather than get the same old coach-speak and rhetoric, it seemed the perfect time to turn to the leader and most experienced member of the team for his thoughts.

Without question, senior quarterback Charlie Whitehurst is the one that carries the respect from his teammates. And since he's been through this type of thing nearly every single year, who better to asses things at this point?

"I don't think we've really gotten down," Whitehurst said of the team's spirits. "Sure, we're disappointed, but it only takes a day or two. You come out here and you start practicing again and you get thinking positive and just try to move forward."

Coming off the humiliating loss to Wake Forest, the Tigers (2-3, 1-3 ACC) have had more than a week before they could get back on the field and redeem themselves. That may explain why they're anxious to play as soon as possible.

"We kind of got after it a little bit (in practice) and worked out some aggression," Whitehurst said. "(The off week) came at a pretty good time."

It also allowed the team to reflect on the past and concentrate on what needs to be done in the future.

"It's occurred to me that we are real close and that we could have won every game, but it's also disappointing that we couldn't do it," Whitehurst said. "And there's a reason why and hopefully we can change that."

There are easier teams Clemson could face to try and right itself other than N.C. State, but that's exactly who the Tigers play Thursday night.

Whitehurst got to watch the Wolfpack eek out a last-second win over Georgia Tech last Thursday night and nothing that he saw surprised him.

"N.C. State kind of looked like what we already knew from the last year or so," he said. "They're talented, they're aggressive and they challenge you to make plays. If you do it, you can beat them. If you can't, then they can make it hard on you."

Tigers head coach Tommy Bowden didn't speak to the media following Monday night's practice due to having to get to Walhalla, where his weekly radio call-in show was being held. … There were no injuries. By all accounts, it's the healthiest the team has been in a while. Top Stories