"Little stuff" focus of Clemson defense

CLEMSON - Malliciah Goodman believes he's made great strides since last season when he was named Co-Defensive Rookie of the Year by the Clemson coaches.

"Confidence level—I feel more loose, stronger and faster. I feel more settled down than last year," he said. "I can actually play rather than think all of the time."

Goodman was one of five players to pick up a sack in Clemson's season opening win over North Texas on Saturday. He finished with seven tackles, two tackles for loss and forced a fumble in the 35-10 win over the Mean Green.

"I think I played pretty well. There are things I need to work on, things that I did pretty well with explosiveness and all of that," Goodman said. "But I need to work on a little bit more. I could have played better."

After North Texas racked up 462 total yards of offense, went 11-of-22 on third down and held on to the ball for nearly 42 minutes, there are plenty of things the defense as a whole could improve.

"We've just got little stuff to work on," Goodman said.

Position groups watched film from Saturday's win on Monday morning in the West End Zone. In regard to the little things the defensive ends could improve, Goodman said, "drop this far back or squeeze a little bit more."

"We know the stuff, we've just got to go and execute. We'll get everything straight this week."

After Saturday's game, head coach Dabo Swinney said he wasn't pleased with the tackling.

"We just need to keep everybody going to the ball and we'll be all right," Goodman said.

The team's focus shifted to this weekend's game versus Presbyterian on Monday. The Blue Hose may be playing Division I football for the first time in school history, but Goodman won't look ahead to the following week's matchup against Auburn.

"Don't judge a team off its previous year or what kind of a team in Division I like that," he said.


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