Clemson University

Clemson gameday

OH MY ACHING . . .

Dealing with injuries:

Louisiana-Monroe: LB Ken Dorsey (leg) is out. LB Travis Eickman (knee) is probable.

Clemson: RB Ray Ray McElrathbey (foot), LB Brandon Maye (foot) are out. RG Thomas Austin (sprained ankle) is doubtful. TE Michael Palmer (ankle) is questionable. RG Brandon Pilgrim (elbow), DT Rashaad Jackson (chest) are probable.

KEYS TO THE GAME

1. Get it over with

One thing Clemson did extremely well last season was put underdogs away early, eliminating any chance for disaster. As long as the offense limits turnovers and the defense is disciplined against ULM’s option looks, there appears little reason that should not be the case again.

2. Remember the pass

Hindsight being 20-20, the Tigers regretted racking up their rushing stats against lesser foes last year, thereby allowing the passing game to become rusty. A 50-50 mix would be ideal for the starting unit. And while they are it, developing WR Jacoby Ford — who went without a catch in the opener — as a pass-catching threat might be a good idea.

3. Then get the starters out

Speaking of yesteryear’s lessons, losing LB Anthony Waters in the meaningless third quarter of the Florida Atlantic rout last season should be the impetus to err on the side of caution. Allowing second-string QB Willy Korn to run the show the entire second half only can help down the road.

KEY MATCHUP

ULM QB Kinsmon Lancaster vs. Clemson CBs Chris Chancellor, Crezdon Butler

About Lancaster: Here is what Clemson needs to know about his athleticism: Two seasons ago, Lancaster (5-foot-11, 195) served as a slotback and ranked third on the team in rushing. Three of his four best passing games came against big-name programs — 377 yards vs. Kansas, 213 vs. Kentucky and 200 vs. Arkansas.

Key number: 55.0 Completion percent the past two years

How Lancaster will win the matchup: For starters, his veteran offensive line must limit pressure, giving receivers time to work against coverage. While not a featured aspect of the offense, Lancaster can and will run the ball, meaning Clemson’s corners will have to keep an eye on the backfield.

About Chancellor, Butler: Chancellor had the best preseason camp of Clemson’s corners but had an average opener, surrendering a large chunk of playing time to backup Haydrian Lewis. Butler performed modestly as well, but for a defense that struggles to generate turnovers, he is the most likely threat to make an interception.

Key number: 4 - Games in which Lancaster threw for less than 150 yards last season

How Clemson’s corners will win the matchup: As always with the Tigers’ defense, the secondary’s job becomes a lot easier if the front seven can apply pressure and/or make ULM one-dimensional. The only deep threat to contain is WR LaGregory Sapp, who averaged 21.4 yards per catch last season.

Q&A with LB Nick Watkins

Q: You grew up in New Orleans, about a four-hour drive to Monroe. Do you have any connections to the Warhawks?

A: One of my homeboys (backup Erroll Hogan) played running back for them last year and has been calling me lately, talking about they’re going to win. I just laugh at him. He was on my rival high school team, so we just had a few words.

Q: Two years ago, your home was deemed unlivable after Hurricane Katrina tore through. At this time last season, your family was displaced and scattered. How has rebuilding gone?

A: Right now everything’s pretty much in order. Momma’s just doing little things around the house like painting, just filling up the house with little stuff that got destroyed or damaged. Everything’s stable right now. My little brother has moved up with me and is about to start college, and my little sister got an apartment down from the house.

Q: What is the No. 1 reason the defense will avoid the psychological meltdown that occurred late last season?

A: We are more in tune. We all hang out together and are good friends. Last year, we had separate crowds. This year we’re all on the same page and everybody’s getting on each other to get better.

DEPTH CHARTS

CLEMSON

QUARTERBACKS

10 Cullen Harper 6-4 220

3 Willy Korn 6-2 215

RUNNING BACK

1 James Davis 5-11 210 or

28 C.J. Spiller 5-11 190

FULLBACK/TIGHT END

41 Alex Pearson 6-0 245

30 Chad Diehl 6-2 250

RECEIVER

6 Jacoby Ford 5-9 185

13 Tyler Grisham 5-11 180

RECEIVER

80 Aaron Kelly 6-5 190

5 Rendrick Taylor 6-2 240

TIGHT END

86 Michael Palmer 6-5 245

84 Akeem Robinson 6-4 260

TIGHT END

85 Brian Linthicum 6-4 235

82 Durrell Barry 6-4 250

LEFT TACKLE

79 Barry Richardson 6-7 330

61 Chris Hairston 6-6 315

LEFT GUARD

68 Chris McDuffie 6-5 330

74 Brandon Pilgrim 6-6 290

CENTER

71 Barry Humphries 6-3 295

78 Ben Ramsey 6-4 290

RIGHT GUARD

65 Thomas Austin 6-3 315

74 Brandon Pilgrim 6-6 290

RIGHT TACKLE

67 Christian Capote 6-4 300

76 Cory Lambert 6-6 310

KICKER

14 Mark Buchholz 6-1 205

19 Richard Jackson 5-11 190

DEFENSE

STRONGSIDE END

94 Phillip Merling 6-5 280

8 Jamie Cumbie 6-7 270

NOSE GUARD

97 Dorell Scott 6-4 320

57 Antwon Murchison 6-4 270

DEFENSIVE TACKLE

91 Rashaad Jackson 6-2 280

50 Jock McKissic 6-7 300

BANDIT END

7 Ricky Sapp 6-4 240 or

24 Kevin Alexander 6-3 245

STRONGSIDE LINEBACKER

20 Tramaine Billie 6-1 210

48 Jeremy Campbell 6-1 225

MIDDLE LINEBACKER

45 Cortney Vincent 6-0 225

43 Antonio Clay 6-0 230

WEAKSIDE LINEBACKER

32 Nick Watkins 6-2 220

33 Kavell Conner 6-1 225

FIELD CORNERBACK

38 Chris Chancellor 5-9 170

29 Haydrian Lewis 5-11 185

BOUNDARY CORNERBACK

18 Crezdon Butler 6-0 185

36 Byron Maxwell 6-1 185

CAT SAFETY

25 Michael Hamlin 6-3 205

2 DeAndre McDaniel 6-0 200

FREE SAFETY

22 Chris Clemons 6-1 210

23 Chris Russell 6-1 215

PUNTER

49 Jimmy Maners 6-1 190

19 Richard Jackson 5-11 190

STATS

RUSHING No. Yds. TDs Yds/G

Davis 18 102 1 102

Spiller 11 48 0 48

Ford 3 32 0 32

RECEIVING No. Yds. TDs Yds/G

Kelly 5 98 1 98

Grisham 3 26 0 26

Spiller 2 3 0 3

PASSING C-A-I Yds. TDs Yds/G

Harper 14-24-0 160 2 160

DEFENSE Tackles TFL Sacks

Watkins 13 1 1

Merling 9 2 1

Hamlin 6 0 0

LOUISIANA-MONROE

QUARTERBACK

7 Kinsmon Lancaster 5-11 202

12 Trey Revell 6-4 210

RUNNING BACK

22 Calvin Dawson 5-10 207

5 Frank Goodin 5-9 194

RECEIVER

3 Darrell McNeal 6-0 210

26 Nate Brown 5-10 175

RECEIVER

18 LaGregory Sapp 6-3 200

16 Jeremy Stafford 6-2 191

RECEIVER/TIGHT END

6 Marty Humphrey 6-1 187 or

15 Zeek Zacharie 6-3 240

TIGHT END

88 Mitch Doyle 6-4 280

15 Zeek Zacharie 6-3 240

LEFT TACKLE

75 Kyle Cunningham 6-4 295

72 Josh Andrews 6-5 325

LEFT GUARD

70 Aaron Schutz 6-3 310

74 Andrew Stout 6-2 290

CENTER

79 Adam Hill 6-1 325

62 Brent Gregston 6-2 275

RIGHT GUARD

55 Patrick Avinger 6-2 275

65 Brett Thompson 6-3 270

RIGHT TACKLE

76 Larry Shappley 6-5 290

68 Kyle Kersten 6-4 285

KICKER

87 Cole Wilson 5-10 195

DEFENSE

END

58 Alaric Coleman 6-3 250

93 Aaron Morgan 6-5 215

NOSE GUARD

99 David Cooper 6-1 273

53 Ricky Williams 6-2 280

TACKLE

98 Kendall Mouton 6-2 305

90 DeMarcus Carmouche 6-5 293

END

95 Jameson Jordan 6-5 235

43 Travis Eickman 6-3 230

LINEBACKER

50 Josh Thomas 6-1 195

35 Jeremy Moll 6-1 220

LINEBACKER

51 Cardia Jackson 6-2 228

45 Matt Freeman 6-0 225

ROVER

28 Josh Thompson 6-2 215

10 John Turner 6-1 200

STRONG SIDE CORNERBACK

21 Quintez Secka 6-0 193

24 Tay Ogletree 6-0 195

WEAK SIDE CORNERBACK

19 Darrius Battles 6-0 180

32 Alex Blake 5-11 170

SAFETY

34 James Truxillo 6-1 190

13 Chance Payne 6-2 230

FREE SAFETY

2 Greg James 6-1 195

23 Preston Fuller 6-0 197

PUNTER

48 Scott Love 6-0 190

SCHEDULE

Aug. 30 vs. Tulsa L, 35-17

Today at Clemson 1 p.m.

Sept. 15 at Texas A&M 7 p.m.

Sept. 29 at Troy 7 p.m.

Oct. 6 vs. Arkansas State 7 p.m.

Oct. 13 at North Texas 7 p.m.

Oct. 20 vs. Florida International 7 p.m.

Oct. 27 at Florida Atlantic 4 p.m.

Nov. 3 vs. Middle Tennessee 7 p.m.

Nov. 10 vs. Grambling St. 5 p.m.

Nov. 17 at Alabama TBA

Nov. 24 at Louisiana-Lafayette 7 p.m.

STATS

RUSHING No. Yds. TDs Yds/G

Dawson 24 150 0 150

Lancaster 13 44 0 44

Revell 1 20 0 20

RECEIVING No. Yds. TDs Yds/G

Sapp 3 23 1 23

Stringfellow 2 32 0 32

Humphrey 1 7 0 7

PASSING C-A-I Yds. TDs Yds/G

Lancaster 7-21-0 66 1 66

DEFENSE Tackles TFL Sacks

James 9 0 0

Thompson 9 1 0

Coleman 9 1 0

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