Tigers brace for Skinner ... again

CLEMSON - The Tigers have gotten off to a solid start on defense this season.

In a recent conversation with CUTigers.com, senior cornerback Chris Chancellor credited halftime adjustments to the defense's dominate second half performance in Clemson's 24-21 loss at Maryland.

After a rough second quarter that saw Maryland score 17 points, throw for 129 yards and rush for 59, Clemson's defense regained a sense of normalcy in the second half. The Terrapins finished with 69 rushing yards and 215 passing yards.

"We came back out and executed the calls that were made and just went out there and played our best," Chancellor said.

The Tigers are giving up an average of 289 yards a game, good enough to be ranked 23rd in the nation in total defense. The defense is also 24th in pass efficiency (106) and 27th in scoring (17.8). In the Atlantic Coast Conference, Clemson is fourth in pass efficiency and third in the others. North Carolina leads the conference in all three categories.

Fresh off a 42-32 win over Maryland on Saturday, Wake Forest now has the 25th best offense in the country, averaging 140 yards on the ground and 286 through the air—16th best in the country.

Senior quarterback Riley Skinner threw four touchdown passes and for 360 yards. The Demon Deacons also rushed for 156 yards.

Done with a bye week that was focused on getting back to the fundamentals, Chancellor and his mates in the secondary have an intriguing matchup in store for Saturday.

"They have a great quarterback in Riley Skinner," he said. "I've played against him a couple of times and this game is going to be a great game. It's another ACC game and we're going to take it very serious."

Starting at last week's first practices, Chancellor said it's time for the leaders need to step up.

"The seniors are stepping up. When we go out to practice, we can't be hanging our head because we're 2-3," he said. "We just have to go out there and treat it like it's the ACC Championship against Wake."

With 16 tackles, three pass breakups and an interception this year, he looks to continue building on those numbers on Saturday. The number he wants to build upon the most is the win total.

"The 2-3 is nowhere we want to be, where our coaches want to be. As players, it's up to us to come together and stay all in," Chancellor said.

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