It’s time to start getting excited about what this football team can do, and it begins with Kyle Wright. Although he took five sacks, Wright came through on third down time and again in Clemson, finishing with 152 yards and a touchdown.
Running Backs: A
Many skeptics, myself included, were worried that Tyrone Moss could not continue strong performances over the course of a full game. Well, Moss was awesome through four quarters and even better in the three overtimes, so I am going to eat a slice of humble pie now.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: B
Greg Olsen was taken out of the game completely by Clemson, but Ryan Moore had some big catches and Sinorice Moss might be a better playmaker than Roscoe Parrish. Darnell Jenkins made two huge third-down grabs as well.
Offensive Line: B-
Five sacks are still not good enough, although Wright brought at least two of those sacks upon himself by not getting rid of the ball enough. The run blocking was strong, as Moss was able to find trucksized holes up the middle at times.
Defensive Line: B-
When judging defensive units in a game like this, you have to ignore the score, because only allowing 30 points in essentially seven periods is actually quite impressive. The d-line could have gotten to Charlie Whitehurst more throughout the game, however.
Willie Williams finally saw some action at linebacker early on and made a nice tackle, but for some reason he was not in during crunch time. Rocky McIntosh played a spirited game for the Hurricanes, but the overall unit needs a lot of work.
Mark my words: The Phillips boys, Ken and Randy, will make Hurricane fans forget Sean Taylor and Antrel Rolle even existed. That’s surely a bold claim, but after what I saw from them in Death Valley, particularly with Ken, I think we could be looking at the 2001 secondary all over again in a few years.
Special Teams: A-
Brian Monroe and Jon Peattie were worlds better than they were in Tallahassee. I knew the Florida State game was an aberration, but we needed to see competency out of the entire unit right away. You are forgiven, Devin Hester.
The offensive play-calling needs much improvement and Defensive Coordinator Randy Shannon has to patch up the holes at linebacker. While these are major concerns, they could be easy fixes if the right people are used.