WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — With fall camp more than halfway in the books, the Deacs continued through a stretch of six practices in four days with an early-morning workout at the Doc Martin Football Practice Complex.
Wake coach Dave Clawson got situational late in the practice, as he had his offense work through a pair of late-game scenarios, with mixed results.
Clawson spoke with Demon Deacon Digest after the practice to give his thoughts on practice, as well as information on more probing, in-depth topics.
On what he did Tuesday for his birthday
Clawson: “I went home, hung out with the family a bit. I watched about 10 minutes of a show on Netflix and a passed out.”
On what he’s watching on Netflix (this was my question. Enquiring minds want to know!)
Clawson: “We’re watching Damages right now. We were into Bloodlines. We’re caught up on that one now. Season two was good. It’s dark. The first season, I was being a good husband. My wife was into it, so I agreed to watch it. The second season, I started getting into it. The other one is the one with Kevin Spacey. . . House of Cards. We had a staycation on spring break and got caught up, so I’m waiting for the next season on that. We’re at the end of season one of Damages, and that one is dark too. It’s really good. My problem is that I don’t handle scary movies very well. So before I go to bed — I watch them, but I need to watch them at 6 o’clock at night. If I watch them from 9-11, I carry it to bed and I have trouble sleeping. What I do now when I’m tired is I’ll watch cooking shows. I’ll watch food shows or nature shows. There’s nothing that will put you to sleep like watching some bird species from a Polynesian Island.”
On what he liked in the situational drills
Clawson: “Every time they come up, it becomes a teachable moment. There’s all these different two-minute situations. It can be end of the half, or end of the game. How you play it depends on the score, so today we were saying it was a tie game. You play it differently in a tie game than you would if you were down two. The end of the half, the score doesn’t matter. There, you’re playing for momentum, not to win or lose. You want to have something good happen, but you can’t let something bad happen. The end of the tie game — you want to be aggressive and win the game, but at the same time, you can’t force the aggressiveness, get it picked or run three plays, just take off 10 seconds and give them a chance to win the game. That is a bit more controlled aggression, where we want to win and we want to score, but once we’re behind and third-and-12. John Wolford took a sack on the third down in a tie game, but it’s not a bad play, because you’d rather him take a sack in that situation than force a throw or throw it out of bounds. Now the other team has to either use a time out, or there’s 40 less seconds for them to win the game. So, in a tie game on third down sometimes a sack is preferable to an incompletion and certainly a lot more than an interception. That’s where, and you’ve watched us practice, in this time of camp, we do these things a lot. We have to put them in that situation, so that in a course of a game they know what happens because they’ve been through it before.”
On special teams
Clawson: “I think our special teams last year were quite honestly, one of the more disappointing aspects of our team. Our punt team was good, and that had a lot to do with who the punter was. The rest of them (special team units) were not good at all. It was really disappointing because in ‘14, our special teams were good. Our special teams were good in 2014 and we brought almost everybody back. We weren’t as good. We were awful in kickoff return. Punt return we really haven’t done anything special. Ever since the first game at Louisiana-Monroe, we haven’t blocked a punt. Our kickoff team gave up some big kickoff returns. You have all that hidden yardage. I always think one of the way take a big jump is you take a big jump in turnovers and you take a big jump in special teams.”