It's time to separate

CLEMSON - When Clemson straps on the pads and laces up the cleats Saturday morning inside Death Valley for its first scrimmage of the spring, head coach Dabo Swinney will be watching several players with a close eye.

One of those players will be senior Rendrick Taylor, who again earned praise from his former position coach following Friday's two-hour practice at Memorial Stadium.

"I'm anxious to see Rendrick continue," Swinney said. "He made a really nice play today. He made a couple of really nice runs. Rendrick Taylor can help this football team. I'm excited about No. 5 being back in the mix."

Swinney hopes a lot of other players start taking Taylor's lead and start standing out a little more. He says that's what he will be looking for more than anything else in this first scrimmage.

"I'm looking for some guys to start to separate," he said. "We have a bunch of guys that are all good players, but they are all in a pack and I would really like to see some guys emerge and separate a little bit."

Some of those guys take up residence along the defensive front. Guys like Jarvis Jenkins, Brandon Thompson, Miguel Chavis, Jamie Cumbie and Rennie Moore.

"I'm looking for competition," Swinney said. "Do they just want to be a pack or does someone want to step up and be a dominate player."

Swinney also wants to see guys take over at wide receiver, linebacker and safety.

"I want to get everybody off the field and let them play," he said. "I want to see the operation on both sides. I want to see how they respond to just playing."

Clemson will practice for about two hours tomorrow starting at 9 a.m. The scrimmage is closed to the public. Besides the standard situational plays they will go through, Swinney also plans to run some goal line, short yardage and red zone situations for the first time this spring.

Quarterback Willy Korn says he cannot wait to get into the stadium and finally start playing more real situational plays against the defense.

"It will be fun," he said. "It will be a good situation. Anytime we go against the defense it is either a team-pass situation or a team-run situation. It is not really a mix of the two. It will be interesting to see how we do against them because they will have to worry about the run and the pass." Top Stories