Video: Spurrier, Ward talk Clemson

GoGamecocks staff reportsNovember 20, 2012 

News and notes from South Carolina's Tuesday press conference featuring Steve Spurrier and Lorenzo Ward, plus injury updates on Connor Shaw and Jadeveon Clowney.

INJURIES UPDATE

... Connor Shaw (foot) did not practice Monday and is not expected to practice Tuesday either. Spurrier said Shaw aggravated his injured foot against Wofford, was hurting in the game but told coaches he'd be fine. "If we would have told us, we probably would have put Dylan [Thompson] in. If he can't play, Dylan will be ready to go." Spurrier said there is concern if Shaw can't practice this week but didn't rule out him playing even if he doesn't practice.

... Jadeveon Clowney (foot/knee) is supposed to practice on a limited basis starting Tuesday. Defensive coordinator Lorenzo Ward revealed that an MRI on Clowney's knee this week showed a bruise underneath the kneecap. Ward expects Clowney to play Saturday. "I thought he was going to play last week. He'll be day-to-day. If he plays, I expect him to be Jadeveon Clowney. If he can't go, we expect Chaz [Sutton] to step up."

Spurrier highlights

... Spurrier on the Clemson offense: "It is by far the best we've played against this year. They've got all the positions covered. Their quarterback has been real good. We played very well defensively last year. Hopefully that will give us confidence that we can hold these guys down."

... Spurrier on the USC offense: "Our offense needs to play better. We were pretty ugly the last game. Kenny Miles had an excellent game. If we're going to have a chance, we have to play some offense, make a bunch of first downs, stay out there and score some points. We know we have to throw."

... Spurrier on the USC road struggles: "Hopefully we can play better on the road than we have thus far this year. We have not played well the last two outings."

... Spurrier on the rivalry: "It's one of the best rivalries. We're in different conferences. It's like Georgia-Georgia Tech, Florida-Florida State. It's bragging rights for the year. We've been pretty fortunate lately. Hopefully it will keep up."

... Spurrier on the idea of beating Clemson to set the USC coaching wins record: "Us against them is big enough to talk about.'

... Spurrier said he was surprised that Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd is not considered a Heisman contender and surprised that offensive coordinator Chad Morris is not a hot name for head coaching jobs. "The guy has put together one of the top offenses."

... Spurrier on Kenny Miles: "He's going to need another good game and maybe Mike Davis also. But we've got to block somebody. We've blocked at times and other times not so well."

... Spurrier on Marcus Lattimore: "He's doing fine. He's coming around. Not much swelling in his knee. He's on the road to recovery."

... Spurrier on the Clemson defense: "Their defense has played well at times and they've given up some yards at time. But they've got athletes all over the field. We have to block them. We had trouble blocking Wofford last week. We're not a high powered offense. We're sort of a slug-it-out bunch. Hopefully we can look like a better offense this week because we didn't look very good last week."

... Spurrier said he is not surprised that USC is the underdog in this game: "No. Not the way that they've played and we've played."

Lorenzo Ward highlights

... On the Clemson offense: "It's even faster this year than it was last year. Tajh is running the system real well. They run the ball just as much as they throw it. They're balanced. I'm sure they'll have a very fast tempo playing at home and not having to worry about crowd noise."

... On turnovers: "It's big in any ballgame. We have to make sure we try to get them off the field. They snap it real quick. We have to get lined up real quick."

... On pressuring the QB: "If we don't affect Tajh, it's going to be a long day. They're a very, very good offense."

... On whether or not D.J. Swearinger will play cornerback this week like he did vs. Arkansas: "We're still tinkering with it. He'll be moving around. He'll play some nickel, he'll play some safety, he'll play some corner."

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