Clemson University

Where’s Deon Cain? Preseason All-ACC selection off to slow start

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney previews matchup with Virginia Tech

The Clemson Tigers will face third top 15 team on Saturday when they travel to face Virginia Tech.
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The Clemson Tigers will face third top 15 team on Saturday when they travel to face Virginia Tech.

Deon Cain was expected to fill the void left by Mike Williams at receiver and be the go-to guy for Clemson in 2017.

That has not been the case as Cain has totaled 151 yards and one touchdown through four games. The junior is averaging fewer yards per game than he did as a backup last season and is also on pace for fewer touchdowns after finishing with nine a season ago.

Clemson co-offensive coordinator and receivers coach Jeff Scott believes it is only a matter of time before Cain has a breakout game.

“It’s a long year. We’re going to be leaning on him a lot as this year goes along and he knows that,” Scott said.

Even though Cain’s numbers are down, Scott added that he is pleased with the way Cain is playing.

“He’s running hard in the fourth quarter regardless of how many touches he’s got,” Scott said. “He’s graded out in the 90s or high 80s each week.”


Clemson is expecting a tough environment at Lane Stadium, a place that has the reputation of being one of the loudest venues in the country.

The Tigers have already gone on the road once this season and played well, topping Louisville 47-21.

“It’s one of the best environments in college football, I think, not just our conference,” Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said. “The Virginia Tech folks do an awesome job of supporting their team. They understand that they have an opportunity to bring great energy to their team and they show up.”


Clemson is trying to get its screen game back on track after struggling against Boston College.

The Tigers had passes complete for -3 yards, no gain and one yard against the Eagles.

“That’s an area we need to improve in. We got blown up there twice,” Scott said. “That’s been a good part of who we’ve been, and that’s an area we want to improve on as we go forward. We’ll definitely spend some time here over the next couple of weeks working on that.”