Chad Kelly wasn’t made available after a tough day at the office in the Clemson spring game.
Instead, his quarterback coach and OC, Chad Morris, had to speak for him – the message? It was just a spring game.
On a fourth-down and short in plus territory Saturday, Kelly was frustrated with the decision to punt and let his coaches know it. They let him know their stance with a second-half benching.
Stoudt pleased with O&W performance
“You can’t gauge any of these quarterbacks – you hate to gauge an entire spring on one spring game,” Morris said. “Obviously we wish that wouldn’t have happened. Everything counts. We’ve all talked about (that) from the get-go. He’s had a good spring. I’m sure he wishes he had that moment back. But it was a spring game. It was an opportunity to deal with some adversity.
“That’s a part of splitting this up. We know that there’s going to be some adversity. There’s going to be some number ones with twos and threes. You just deal with it. How do you respond? I think he got a little frustrated with it. Got to move forward.
"This doesn’t need to be the overshadow of the entire spring. Because he had a good spring. We had a great battle."
While freshman Deshaun Watson watched from the sidelines (broken collarbone), senior Cole Stoudt fired touchdown passes of 28 and 16 yards, completing 65 percent of his passes without a pick.
“Cole has been very consistent the entire spring,” Morris said. “The entire spring. He’s been a steady Eddie type guy. Never too high – never too low. Good to see that today. Made some good throws. Wish he made a couple more throws that he had confidence in making. Just part of the spring.”
“After watching Cole the last few years, what’s made Cole so consistent is his ability to find all his reads and get to his checkdowns. That’s what really has made him special. It was good to see him respond to adversity for the checkdowns.
“We all know Cole’s not going to beat you with his feet – he’s just not. He’s smart. He has the ability to hit checkdowns and that’s pretty special.”
Their top targets showed off the work this spring – all three mid-year freshmen receiver getting in the action.
East Lake (Fla.) product Artavis Scott burst through for a 33-yard reception and finished with six catches. Peach State products Demarre Kitt and Kyrin Priester combined for five catches and 33 yards.
“All three have done some really good things – all three of them,” Morris said. “Obviously they’ve all made mistakes. Kyrin Priester made some really good catches today – especially on some slant balls. Artavis Scott is electric. He’s very quick in space. We saw that today. We’ve seen that all spring.
“They’re just getting better every day. Sometimes they’re getting better the hard way – taking a step back. Demarre Kitt had a couple critical mistakes in some blocking, but he also had some really good things happened.
“I love all of these new guys. I think they’re going to be dynamic. They’re freshmen – they should be going to the prom right now. They’re here. I promise they’re not going to regret this.”