Running back C.J. Spiller has had a recurring issue with one of his football wheels this season, but Tuesday he actually did incur a flat tire while driving to media interviews.
Spiller jokingly offered the timing was not coincidental, seeing as Saturday's clash at No. 8 Miami will pit speed versus speed.
"It's going to be like a NASCAR race out there, everybody flying around," he said. "I had to go get new tires. I'm pretty sure when Jeff Gordon goes into a race, he gets new tires."
Spiller - who then detailed his little-known interest in racing - has had a play of 60-plus yards in each game this season despite dealing with turf toe.
"He's real good, that's all I can tell you," Miami coach Randy Shannon said. "You just have to watch him."
No cigar. The Tigers have lost to No. 10 TCU and No. 11 Georgia Tech by a combined seven points, and coach Dabo Swinney said that precludes him from suggesting Clemson has top-15 talent.
"We have to learn to finish in games like this," Swinney said. "We should be a top-15 program around here. We had two of them on the mat with a two count and didn't quite finish them.
"That's maturing. That's what I'm looking for."
Mind games. Knowing Clemson to prepare for Wake Forest, offensive coordinator Billy Napier said the question this week is whether players have the same urgency as before.
"It's amazing what a good win will do to your morale," Napier said. "And hopefully they won't forget.
"We'll have to remind them early today, don't forget how average you were when you weren't focused and you weren't preparing the right way, and the details weren't important. We've just got to keep our thumb on them."
Napier acknowledged the pivotal person in that progression was redshirt freshman quarterback Kyle Parker, who admitted he began taking more thorough notes and devoted more time watching film for Wake Forest.
"Not only is he a first-year starter, but he's also a guy who never really observed a guy preparing to play," Napier said. "He hasn't been around for a couple of years and watched maybe how the starter went through his preparations throughout the week.
"We're trying to teach him, and he's living and learning through trial and error how to have a good week of preparation."
Pick six. Senior cornerback Chris Chancellor, who will wear No. 6 to honor slain Connecticut player Jasper Howard - Chancellor's former high school teammate - is not on any special teams units with receiver Jacoby Ford, who also wears No. 6.
Having two players wearing a duplicate jersey number on the field at the same time is supposed to warrant a 5-yard penalty.
"It doesn't seem to be a problem to have guys with the same number on the field, so he's fine," Swinney said sarcastically.
Officials during the Wake Forest game appeared to allow the Demon Deacons to substitute one of the players out when they faced such an infraction before a kickoff last weekend, triggering a sideline tirade from Swinney.