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Clemson Football

Venables says Georgia is 'a lot like Ohio State' ahead of Top 5 contest in Charlotte

September 2, 2021
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As Coach Venables and the Tigers defense prepare to take on the Georgia Bulldogs this weekend, coach Venables spoke to reporters ahead of the matchup. Clemson’s defensive coach focused on his takeaways from last year’s Georgia vs. Cincinnati game, his thoughts on Georgia’s defensive line, and his responses to defensive player development.

  • “Georgia can win in different kinds of ways. They don't have to (just) run the ball.”

Coach Venables is preparing the Clemson defense for everything that Todd Monken might throw at them. He knows that Georgia has been a powerhouse at running back, but won’t sleep on their ability to beat you in other areas.

“Georgia can win in different kinds of ways. They don't have to (just) run the ball. There cannot be a better group of running backs in college football, than what Georgia has. For a number of years, they've done a great job there at having stable backs, that's not really surprising. And they've got it right now, that's definitely one of the strengths of their football team. And as you saw against Cincinnati, (Georgia) was not going to run the football. And Georgia took advantage of that and did a great job. JT handled the pressure very well, he throws the ball extremely well under pressure, one of the highest ratings in college football. He’s a guy that’s very talented, that can make quick decisions and make good decisions under duress. He throws the ball with accuracy and timeliness, and the kind of arm strength that you’ve got to have in the college game.”

When asked about the challenges in facing Georgia’s offensive line, Venables responded with some staunch comparisons.

  • “They're probably a lot like Ohio State.”

Venables didn’t have much to say but considering that Ohio State and Notre Dame have been responsible for their last two losses, the following comparisons might put some Clemson fans on high alert.

“They're probably a lot like Ohio State. Notre Dame in some ways, probably a little bit more like Ohio State though in terms of physicality, size, and athletic ability.”

After speaking on the physicality, size, and athletic ability of Georgia’s offensive line, Venables turned his attention to Georgia's weapons at the skill positions.

  • “He's a playmaker, runs jet sweeps and he can run by you outside. He can catch the short one and make it into a big gain.”

Clemson’s defensive coordinator spoke highly on Georgia’s Jermaine Burton and complemented his game last year as a Freshman. Venables spoke of some of the mismatches and challenges that a player like Burton creates for his defense.

“He's really fast, very sudden, incredibly strong. He's a playmaker, runs jet sweeps and he can run by you outside. He can catch the short one and make it into a big gain. For a freshman what he was able to do last year, super impressive. I think he maybe had been banged up some last year, but very impressive. Physically, really mature, and very, very explosive. He's a dude, he's a big guy as well.”

Venables certainly paid his respects to Georgia’s offense where it was due, but then turned his focus to his defense, providing some reassuring assessment on Clemson’s emerging defensive talent, specifically about Linebacker, Barrett Carter, and Defensive lineman, Tré Williams.

  • “He's physical can tackle, not overwhelmed, very humble, has great anticipation, really coachable, (and is a) hard worker.”

When talking about Barrett Carter, Venables noted his need for development but praised him on some of his intangible skills.

“He plays fast. We've lined him up at multiple positions. He doesn’t have all the details as far as the scheme. But he finds the ball. He knows the difference between run and pass. He's physical can tackle, not overwhelmed, very humble, has great anticipation, is really coachable, (and is a) hard worker. He’s a little bit behind from where maybe the mid-years were. But you can quickly see all the athletic ability, not just being a good athlete, but a football player and understands how to use his hands and has improved in a lot of different fundamental areas in the short amount of time that we've been here, but was well versed coming in too. He comes from a great program, North Gwinnett, and was super well-coached. And a lot of those things have transitioned with him. You'll see that his role does continue to grow and mature as the year goes on, and fortunately for us, there's not this (feeling of), ‘he's got to be a starter from day one.’ But I do think that as he continues to get experience and learns that he'll make us better. He can fill in at multiple positions, but I think we got him penciled in there to be a major factor as well in the special teams right away.”

At the end of the day, Venables’ sentiment remained the same that it always has been at the start of a new season. They have found a new DNA and no matter what happens this weekend vs Georgia, a win or loss this week will not define this program.

 

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Venables says Georgia is 'a lot like Ohio State' ahead of Top 5 contest in Charlotte

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