Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports

Clawson on Deacs 17-6 loss at Florida State

Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson answers questions from the media following the Deacs 17-6 loss to Florida State.

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — The Deacs (5-2, 2-2) had plenty of chances against the Seminoles (5-2, 2-2) Saturday afternoon, but just couldn’t cash them in for touchdowns in a 17-6 loss at Doak Campbell Stadium.

Penalties, bad snaps, missed tackles and turnovers doomed the Deacs, as they continue the streak to now 21 quarters without scoring a touchdown at Florida State.

Wake Forest coach Dave Clawson fielded questions from the media following the contest.

On the big game from Florida State wide receiver Travis Rudolph

Clawson: “Rudolph, (Jesus) Wilson, (Kermit) Whitfield — you can keep going on. They have a lot of weapons. They really do. It’s hard to focus on (Dalvin) Cook so much because of how good they are on the perimeter. Cook had a good game, but I thought we limited him. He didn’t get those big, breakout runs he had against us a year ago, but he’s a good player. I’m sure he had 100 yards, but it took a lot of carries to get it.”

On the game being within their grasp until the missed field goal in the 4th quarter

Clawson: “It would have been an eight-point game, which would have put us exactly where we were a year ago with six minutes left.”

On if the holding call against Argenzio on the Armstrong kickoff return was behind the play

Clawson: “I don’t know. I’ll have to watch the play.”

On Cam Serigne

Clawson: “It was going to be a gametime decision. He strained his hamstring late in the Syracuse game. Every day (in practice) he did more, and today he warmed up with the intention of playing. He said, ‘I can play.’ I asked him if he felt it at all. He said he did. I told him if he played, pulled the thing, then missed a month then we’re not a better football team. Probably the fact we had the bye week influenced that decision a little bit. We need weapons on offense. Cortez (Lewis). We need other guys that can make plays. Cam has to be one of our playmakers, and he’s not going make plays at 65-70 percent. We have to get him to 100 percent and healthy. Our only chance was to not play him today and risk an injury, and hope to have him back for Army.”

On John Harris

Clawson: “Same thing. He practiced Thursday, and we thought we’d have him. He went for warmups and told us his ankle didn’t feel right. Anytime you get a 300-pounder on an ankle, if they tweak it again, then we’re not going to have him for Army. We’ve got a lot of football left. The truth of it is, the next guy at 100 percent is better than those guys at 60 percent. If I thought he was 90 percent, he would have played.”

On how much it hurt to not capitalize on short-field opportunities early in the 2nd half

Clawson: “We gave them points and we had the ball in the red zone and couldn’t capitalize. Red zone comes down to winning one-on-one matchups, and we didn’t win one-on-one matchups on the perimeter. We gave our guys chances with balls in the air. When they’ve blitzing and playing press-man, you have to be able to win. Other than Cortez, we didn’t win in the red zone.”

On Essang Bassey’s play

Clawson: “I thought he played well. For a true freshman, first start ever, at Florida State against those receivers. The ball didn’t go over his head. I have to watch the tape, but he certainly didn’t stick out like he didn’t belong.”

On the two early interceptions

Clawson: “I thought both of them, we needed to attack the ball more aggressively than we did. Those are two freshmen receivers that need to attack the football. It’s not scout team. It’s Florida State. This isn’t 2s vs. 2s or scout. This is Florida State and you have to go out there and attack the football. We didn’t attack it. It’s one thing to not come up with the catch, but you have to not let the other guy make a play on it. And those were two costly picks. One could have gotten us out of a jam, and the other led to a score. Every time they go through it, that’s a learning experience. Those corners are really good players. This isn’t scout team, and this isn’t 2s. They have to go out and compete against some of the best corners in the country. Those are battles they won today.”

On changing long snappers after one bad snap

Clawson: “It’s not one bad snap. It was two. We had one last week two. He rolled it back. That has cost us two weeks in a row. We have other guys capable of doing it. These things happen now and then, but it’s happened too much and it’s happened in practice. That wasn’t an impulsive decision. We were going to go with him, but if we had a problem, we were going to make a switch.”

On if Kendall Hinton will be back in two weeks for the Army game

Clawson: “I hope so. We’ve moved the ball well. I think our offense is better and we’re scoring more points today notwithstanding. Clearly today we lacked explosive plays.”

On Tabari Hines almost making one

Clawson: “Yeah, but it hit the ground. Story of our day.”


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