With the 'hay in the barn,' Tigers taking a pre-LSU Christmas break

Clemson wrapped up on-campus bowl practice with an uneventful workout on Friday

The Tigers warm up at their first bowl game football practice session on Dec. 8th

Photo by Mark Crammer

The Tigers warm up at their first bowl game football practice session on Dec. 8th

The world didn't come to an end on Friday, nor was there any 'earth shattering news' from the Clemson football practice field as the Tigers finished up their on-campus preparations for their Chick-fil-A Bowl date with LSU.

"We wrapped up practice and we had good preparation," said Clemson coach Dabo Swinney. "We had a really good few weeks of work, trying to balance preparing for LSU and working on ourselves - a lot of good, competitive work.

"Now the hay is in the barn. The game plans are done. and the guys are going to get out of here this afternoon and enjoy Christmas with their families."

The Tigers will reassemble Christmas night for an 8:30 p.m. team meeting, and then will resume practicing on Wednesday, Dec. 26.

"We'll be able to have a normal game week from a preparation standpoint," Swinney said.

Swinney said that in planning Clemson's bowl practices, he and his staff tried to strike a balance between working on themselves and preparing for LSU.

"You have a month, and a lot of it is just good Clemson-on-Clemson drill work," he said. "If you don't do that, you've gone a month without tackling anybody or seeing good, full-speed competition.

"We started practice will skills and drills, and then we moved to a lot of good, competitive work against ourselves before we moved into game planning.

"You can game-plan way too much for one team, and all of a sudden, your guys get bored. Also, part of it is not practicing too long, limiting the amount of time you spend on the field. After finals, we spent some good time cracking heads, and then the last two days, we've tapered back and focused on game-plan."

Swinney said the finishing touches will be applied in Atlanta.

"When you get to the bowl site, it's just not a great environment to be having staff meetings and game-planning," he said. "That's not really what you want to do, and you really shouldn't have to do that.

"Our game plan is set on both sides. They know, going home, what we're going to do. So when we get down there, we'll polish, and then hopefully show up on game day and play our best game."

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