Shipley missed the Notre Dame game on Saturday due to an injury he picked up against NC State. With Shipley out, Mafah had a breakout performance against the Fighting Irish, running for a career-high 186 yards and two touchdowns. Since Shipley is expected to be back against the Yellow Jackets, will he return to his starting running back role, or has Mafah earned the start?
Meeting with the media Tuesday, Swinney shared his plan to ride the hot hand in the backfield.
“Anytime you have multiple good players and someone gets the hot hand, that is kind of how it always is,” Swinney said during his weekly press conference on Tuesday. “Obviously, Phil got hot last week, and we are going to make sure he has a chance to stay hot.”
“Don’t get amnesia now. Everybody gets amnesia quick around here. We have won a lot of games because of Will Shipley, and he will remind you quickly. He will make you remember, ‘Oh yeah, that’s why we like Will Shipley.'”
Shipley has been the focal point of the Clemson offense for three seasons now, and we all know what he is capable of when he gets going. In his career with the Tigers, he has run for 2,435 yards and 29 touchdowns, adding 478 receiving yards and two scores.
“We are excited to hopefully get him back, and Phil will definitely have the opportunity to go see if he can stay hot and see what happens,” Swinney said. “Both of those guys are major weapons and have been.”
It will be interesting to see how this backfield is run on Saturday.