Clemson notes: Gifford Timothy expected to start at right tackle, Peake to start at receiver
CLEMSON – The untested Clemson offensive line received some good news Monday when offensive coordinator Chad Morris said he expected right tackle Gifford Timothy to be able to start against Auburn on Saturday in Atlanta.
Timothy had arthroscopic knee surgery to repair damage to his meniscus 17 days ago but returned to practice last week and increased reps as the week went along.
“I feel he’ll be ready to go,” Morris said. “He worked out last week. The more the week progressed, the more reps he got. He looked good. He’s a little out of shape but that comes with having a week or two off.”
On an offensive line devoid of experience, coach Dabo Swinney half-jokingly referred to the redshirt sophomore as a “veteran” though the 6-foot-6, 310-pound Timothy has never started a college game.
The young front will be tested as Morris called the Auburn defensive line “one of the best in the country.”
Peake(ing) at the right time: Charone Peake will start at receiver Saturday in place of the suspended Sammy Watkins, Peake will start over, but split reps with, fellow sophomore Adam Humphries at the team’s No. 2 receiver position.
Morris said Peake’s consistency in camp, and his speed, helped earn him the starting job. Peake said he ran a 4.24 second 40-yard dash earlier this offseason. Even if the time was overstated, Peake is still one of the fastest Tigers along with Watkins and Martavis Bryant. Peake will join fellow receivers DeAndre Hopkins and Jaron Brown in the stating lineup.
He said it: Defensive back Xavier Brewer on the team’s struggles in Atlanta – both in the Georgia Dome and at Georgia Tech: “The perception is we don’t play well in Atlanta, so I guess the perception is true. It’s up to us to change that.”
Man down: Auburn will be without center Reese Dismukes against Clemson following the sophomore’s arrest on a public intoxication charge last week. Dismukes was a SEC all-freshman selection last season.
Depth charge: Several positional battles are yet to be determined according to the team’s first depth chart. Corey Crawford and Vic Beasley are listed as co-starters at defensive end and Rashard Hall is listed as a co-starter at safety along with Jonathan Meeks and Xavier Brewer.
Red alert: Morris said the plan is to try to redshirt both freshman quarterback Chad Kelly and freshman receiver Germone Hopper this season.