Hard Work Pays Off for Hill

CLEMSON - CUTigers.com caught up with Tye Hill this week to get his thoughts on the last three games of the season, his improvement as a senior cornerback and much more, in this report.

Tye, it seems like the defense is really playing better these last three games. What do you attribute that to?
Hill: I attribute that to Coach Vic Koenning. He's been putting together a great scheme for us to go out and execute. He's given us chances to be successful; and like I told him after the Georgia Tech game, 'you called a great game.' The schemes were phenomenal. And anytime I feel like I go out there with a good scheme, it's a tribute to the coach. Anytime our defense plays great, it's a tribute to the coaches.

About your game personally: I know it's a very important year for you for obvious reasons, but it seems like you've been a more physical cornerback and a better tackler this year. Is that something you really tried to focus on in the offseason?
Hill: Well, I kind of focused on it a lot because of my size; for the offseason, yeah. I'm a little guy; we're not going to fool anybody. [laugh] People look at me and they think he's just a finesse corner. All he does is… He's going to cover, but he's not going to tackle you. Nah, I will tackle you. I don't want anybody to think I won't tackle you. I want to be known as a physical… I want to be known as a complete corner all across the board, and that's something I work hard on, and I'm trying to get better at it everyday.

Last year's game at Duke – obviously it has to be one of the most disappointing games of your career here. Can you use that as motivation? Obviously you guys have superior talent.
Hill: Oh, most definitely. Because we know we cannot take those guys for granted. This is the ACC, and I remember saying last year: on any given Saturday, you can lose. And it was proven last year when we lost to Duke. I feel… For me personally, I know I'm going to practice hard this week because I know we've got a good team coming in here, especially after looking at them on film.

You're 4-4 through the first eight games of the year. As far as team goals for the rest of this season, what's left on the table for you guys?
Hill: We're 4-4 right now; we've got three games left; so we talk about finishing 7-4 in the regular season. We want to finish the season strong, especially for guys like me, Jamaal, and Charlie. We're all seniors, and we want to go out on a high note. I don't want to end my Clemson career in two years without going to a bowl. I think the goal right now is to get into postseason play and play as hard and as strong as we can for the rest of the season.

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