3 offensive keys to a Clemson win over Miami

Dabo Swinney and the Clemson football program currently have a 9-1 (7-0 ACC) and are coming off a solid 31-16 win over Scott Satterfield and the Louisville Cardinals. 

It was a great recovery win for the Tigers, who had a rough showing the week before against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Now ranked No.9 in the College Football Playoff rankings, Swinney and the Tigers continue their season at home this week as they take on the Miami Hurricanes Saturday, November 19th, in Death Valley. 

A team with a lot of hype surrounding them heading into the season under new head coach Mario Cristobal, the Hurricanes have struggled much more than expected. This matchup with Miami is a game Clemson should have no problems with as they look to continue their undefeated run in the ACC. 

Here are three offensive keys for the Tigers’ bounce back against Miami.

Keep Antonio Williams heavily involved

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True freshman wide receiver Antonio Williams has proven to be the best wide receiver on the team and has proven to have a great connection with starting quarterback DJ Uiagalelei. All season, Clemson had been waiting for a wide receiver to step up and be the go-to guy in this offense, and it was the freshman who took responsibility. While Williams has flashed greatness all season, in the Tigers’ last game against Louisville, the young wideout truly broke out. Against the Cardinals, Williams drew 11 targets, catching 10 of them for 81 yards and a touchdown. Clemson has found their WR1; they just need to keep treating him as such for this offense to be successful.

Hit the ground running

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At times, it feels like offensive coordinator Brandon Streeter and the Tigers’ offense overcomplicate things and make their job much more difficult than it needs to be. Against Miami, Clemson’s offense should establish the run early and often with their star running back Will Shipley and excellent change of pace back Phil Mafah. Against Notre Dame, the offensive playcalling seemingly ignore the offense’s strengths which led to the worst offensive performances we’ve seen from the Tigers this season. The next game against Louisville, the offense got back to what they do best and the results were great with the team going for 248 yards on the ground. When it comes down to it, Clemson is a run first team and the offense looks its best when they let Will Shipley do his thing.

Put DJ Uiagalelei in good situations

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Clemson starting quarterback DJ Uiagalelei has the talent to succeed, but we’ve seen him struggle from time to time throughout the season. Regardless of how people feel about him, Uiagalelei is the Tigers guy, so Swinney and the coaching staff must do everything in their power to help their quarterback feel comfortable and confident under center. Both of the previous two keys will help in doing this, but that is just a piece of keeping Uiagalelei in a positive situation. Offensive coordinator Brandon Streeter did an excellent job of getting the junior quarterback going against Louisville, allowing DJ to use his feet a ton on the first drive which led to some offensive success. With that success, we see a more confident Uiagalelei who will perform at a higher level. In situations such as the Tigers are in at quarterback, it is essential that you are putting your guy (DJ) in situations where he will feel that comfort and confidence. The team should keep things fast-paced and their foot on the pedal; as Uiagalelei has said, this is when he feels at his best. Play calling will be a significant key down the line for this team, as Uiagalelei needs the proper support to be great.

Clemson X-Factor against Miami

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X-Factor: WR Antonio Williams

Player to look out for

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Look out for: TE Davis Allen

Story originally appeared on Clemson Wire