Swinney challenges fans

CLEMSON — Clemson finished up its last official practice before Saturday's Annual Orange and White Game with a half practice and half scrimmage Wednesday, which concluded with two situational practices for the offense and the defense.

"It was a very physical day," Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. "We got a lot of work done, including some good situational stuff done at the end."

Those situational things included an offensive practice where the offense was given the ball at the three-yard line and had two plays to try and win the game, while the defense was given the situation where there was 2:45 left on the clock and they had two timeouts and they had to prevent the offense from getting a first down.

"Those were good competitive drills," Swinney said.

Though Swinney was pleased with his offensive production Wednesday, he was disappointed with the way his defense played, especially in the many scrimmage. Thanks to big plays from Xavier Dye, Jaron Brown and Rendrick Taylor the Clemson offense jumped out to a 21-0 lead in the scrimmage.

"Probably the first day I have come off the practice field and been a little disappointed," Swinney said. "I did not think they came ready to play until it was 21-0. You can't show up when it is 21-0. You have to show up when it is 0-0, but they did respond and that's a good thing, but I'm disappointed with how they started practice overall."

Clemson also had a couple of penalties on offense and defense that he was disappointed in.

Wednesday's mini-scrimmage was the last physical practice for the Tigers before Saturday's spring game. Tomorrow they will be in shorts. The NCAA requires that each team have three days in shorts at some point during spring drills.

FURLOUGH FAN: Swinney is encouraging all Clemson fans to make donations to the "One Clemson Furlough Relief Fund" at the Spring Football Game Saturday. The intra-squad game, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 1 p.m. Fans can make donations in "All In" barrels as they enter the stadium gates.

"I am first challenging all Clemson fans to come to Death Valley this Saturday to break the Spring Game attendance record," Swinney said. "The record is 20,000 and it should be a great day to come to Clemson with all the campus activities.

"I am also asking everyone to contribute just a dollar or two or whatever they want to the Clemson Furlough Fund. We are fortunate in the football office, but many people who work on this campus are not as fortunate as we are. They can use your help."

The purpose of the One Clemson Furlough Relief Fund is to support those Clemson University employees who face the most severe financial hardship due to the loss of pay from the mandatory five-day furlough announced by the University last November for the 2008-09 fiscal year.


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