Flu sidelines six Clemson players

No confirmation if it was swine flu; Maryland game will be at noon

pstrelow@thestate.comSeptember 22, 2009 

CLEMSON - Six Clemson players were withheld from Monday night's practice because of the flu, and it remains unclear whether the outbreak is swine flu.

Junior defensive tackle Jarvis Jenkins stayed home from Monday's indoor practice after coming down with a fever earlier in the day, athletic department spokesman Tim Bourret said.

Five other players - at least four of whom are offensive linemen - sat out but watched from the bleachers while wearing masks to guard against spreading their germs. They were starting center Mason Cloy and four reserves - Jamarcus Grant, Kenneth Page, Phillip Price and K.C. Nobles.

Grant was said to have had a 102-degree fever Saturday and did not join the team against Boston College.

Bourret said that athletic trainer Danny Poole has not tested either athlete for swine flu, because it is treated the same as regular flu.

This came on the heels of a report that Clemson has been forced to turn away students whose needs can be safely deferred because the university's health center has been overwhelmed with swine flu cases.

At least 321 cases have been confirmed at Clemson since the start of the fall semester, according to a report Sunday by The Greenville News. George Clay, executive director of Student Health Services, was quoted saying most cases have been mild and lasted three to five days. Clay was aware of no hospitalizations.

No day break. Clemson's string of day games will continue as the ACC has tabbed next week's contest at Maryland to kick off at noon. It will be televised on ESPNU.

Three's a crowd. Sophomore running back Jamie Harper has yet to live up to the preseason hype, leading some to wonder if redshirt freshman Andre Ellington has passed Harper on the depth chart, even in short-yardage situations.

Ellington is averaging 6.6 yards per carry, double that of Harper (3.3).

Running backs coach Andre' Powell said Monday the two backs will continue to be used on a situational basis for several reasons. For one, Ellington has his own issues to address - a fumble and dropped pass against Boston College. Plus Powell believes Harper has been the victim of some poor blocking.

"I told him this morning, I don't think you're living good," Powell said. "Half the times you run the ball, we have a bust or the defense called a better play than we did. By the end of the year, it will shake out."

No thanks. TCU defensive coordinator Dick Bumpas was given the chance to join the Tigers' staff in 1990 when Ken Hatfield replaced Danny Ford.

Bumpas was an assistant on Hatfield's Arkansas staff but turned down an offer to follow him to Clemson, instead electing to accept the defensive line job at Notre Dame under Lou Holtz.

Extra points. In the latest episode of receiver roulette, sophomore receiver Marquan Jones has supplanted junior Terrance Ashe as a starting receiver. ... Defensive end Ricky Sapp and kicker Richard Jackson won the ACC's defensive lineman and specialist of the week awards, respectively. ... Boston College's 55 yards of offense against Clemson was its lowest total since 1980.

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