O'Brien: Pack Focused On Clemson

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Head coach Tom O'Brien met with the media following practice Thursday and talked about the challenge of stopping Clemson's spread offense.

Tom O'Brien

Does Clemson's offense compare to other spread offenses you've seen in the last couple of years? ECU, Clemson maybe?
"There's a little bit of all of it involved. The thing that makes them different is the use of the tight end. That's the difference between the normal spread offense and what they've been able to do that we've seen here in the last couple of years."

What are the two most important things the offense and defense will have to do Saturday to win?
"Well, certainly the defense has to not give up any big plays, has to make them work. Offensively we have to stay on the football field and keep the defense off the field, that's the best thing to do against their offense."

You guys like to blitz a lot, is that tougher against the spread because of how quickly they get rid of the ball?
"Yeah, any time it's tough to blitz if you are going to throw it right away. That's one of the challenges but that's fun, that's the fun part about coaching is trying to solve problems and put your kids in position to win. They are pretty prolific on offense, it's going to be a great challenge."

Is there one "backs against the wall" upset you remember over others in your career?
"I never reflect on those things, I just go week to week. Worry about beating Clemson."

Who was Sammy Watkins in practice this week?
"Maurice Morgan, actually Rashard Smith when he hasn't been playing defense, volunteered to be Sammy so we've had a lot of guys volunteering to run around."

How has practice been overall this week?
"They've been really focused, tuned. Once again, we have a sense of urgency because of the hole that we're in so we'll see if we can dig our way out of it Saturday against a great football team."

What does a wet practice do for you?
"It picks up practice, they always practice better when the weather is horrible, for whatever reason they always have. The worse the weather is the more they get out there and run around."

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