Chancellor Up for the Challenge?

CLEMSON - One of the players responsible for defending Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones, the No. 1 wide out in the nation in high school a year ago, will be junior Chris Chancellor. Think he's up to the challenge?

When you think of impact players on Clemson's defense, the first name that comes to mind typically isn't one of the cornerbacks.

For whatever reasons, juniors Crezdon Butler and Chris Chancellor seem to avoid the spotlight in the same way as most long snappers do. Still, the tandem represents half of what most believe to be the top secondary in the ACC.

And that tandem will be under the spotlight Saturday night in the Georgia Dome when they matchup with Alabama freshman wide receiver Julio Jones. sat down with Chancellor this week for a 1-on-1 interview to get his thoughts on the game, and defending Jones:

Are you going to be the primary corner that lines up against Julio Jones Saturday night?
Chancellor: Well actually it depends on where he's going to line up. I play the field side, Crezdon plays the boundary side so whichever side he goes on will be the side that matches up with him.

What do you know about this guy? He's got some highlight reels on YouTube but have you been able to watch any film of him to help prepare yourself?
Chancellor: Well I know he was the No. 1 receiver in the nation last year in the class of 2008. He's a big guy- 6-5, 215 or something like that. I haven't really watched him on YouTube or anything like. I don't pay attention to all of that. We've got a great receiver in Aaron Kelly. He's the best. So that's what I'm preparing for ... I go against the best receiver in practice every day and hopefully Julio Jones won't be able to matchup with that.

What can Alabama do on offense that will keep you guys on your heels?
Chancellor: Well they run a lot of spread. We've seen that on film. They have a new offensive coordinator from Fresno State and he's a good one. Hopefully we'll be able to go out there and stop them.

Last year the defense was ranked in the top 10 in the nation nationally but you guys really didn't get as much pressure on the quarterback as you would expect. With this year's line and from what you've seen in practice do you expect that to change?
Chancellor: Yes. The front four, that's where the game starts. Even with Rashaad injured, Cumbie is going to step up and Jarvis Jenkins as well. Dorell and Ricky Sapp around the end, we feel like we should be able to get more pressure this year.

You've got all four guys back in the secondary, how does that help you in an opener like this against a good team like Alabama from SEC?
Chancellor: It helps. We've got a lot of veterans on this team. Guys like Chris Clemons, Mike Hamlin and Crezdon Butler. We've been in big games like this before and have been around tens of thousands of fans. We are just going to go out there and player our hardest.

Talking to the team this week, it really seems like playing in this venue- the Georgia Dome, is a very big deal. Talk about that from your perspective.
Chancellor: Yes sir. Playing in the Georgia Dome is great. They've got the turf in there. Last year, oh man, [against Auburn] it was a great atmosphere. Right there in downtown Atlanta. We wanted a different outcome but it's a great place to play. BR> Top Stories