CLEMSON — Trayvon Mullen took off racing during Clemson's spring game, the junior cornerback sprinting 84 yards down the football field unscathed for a pick six. For a brief moment Saturday, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney found himself conflicted.
On the one hand ...
"Trayvon did a great job breaking (the receiver) and kind of took it," Swinney gushed after Mullen's interception for a touchdown helped the Orange team beat the White team, 28-17. "Good to see him finish it, too. He ran away from everybody, so a great job."
Yet, on the other ...
"(The White team was) driving," Swinney continued. "I was kind of hoping they'd score right there to see how it'd play out. But Trayvon ended it."
For reasons obvious, had Mullen not picked off quarterback Chase Brice's pass to wide receiver Cornell Powell on a slant route, Swinney would have been interested to see how the trailing team performed with a little momentum on its side as the clock dwindled down. At that point, the White team was down just four points.
What the White team would have done, though, would have been a product of what play was called. And the play call itself would have been a product of the man in charge.
It was decided before the annual spring game began that co-offensive coordinators Jeff Scott and Tony Elliott would both be handling the Orange team's offense. That meant all of the White team's play-calling was left to quarterbacks coach/recruiting coordinator Brandon Streeter, who could be next in line if either Scott or Elliott were to depart the program any time soon.
Scott and Elliott drew interest from other colleges right around the time the Tigers were making a run at another ACC Championship and another College Football Playoff berth in December, yet both coaches made it clear they were happy at Clemson and indicated the timing was not right. In the event it is one day, though, perhaps that would make way for Streeter to slide into a more advanced role as an offensive coordinator at his alma mater.
The fit feels natural and having been on Swinney's staff for four seasons now, Streeter knows the lay of the land as well as anyone.
His performance reviews from Saturday were strong.
"He did a great job. He did an excellent job. I thought he gave them an opportunity to make a few plays and just missed on some early," Swinney said.
"He did good, man," Elliott added. "He made a ballgame and it looks like he played to his quarterbacks’ strengths over there."
Streeter came to Clemson in 2014 by way of Richmond, where he served as the quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator from 2012-14. No stranger to calling plays, the former Clemson quarterback also coached at Liberty for six seasons prior to his stint at Richmond. For three of those six seasons at Liberty, he was also the offensive coordinator.
Streeter served as a graduate assistant at Clemson in 2004 and 2005 when Swinney was still the wide receivers coach, so the two go back more than a decade.
Though Streeter's team eventually lost, it was his quarter — Brice — who led all quarterbacks with 231 passing yards and it was teammate Travis Etienne who led all rushers with 42 yards. Behind sophomore Tee Higgins of the Orange team, the receivers who rounded out the top performances of the day statistically — Trevion Thompson and Diondre Overton — were also on Streeter's side of the field, suggesting he did plenty right.
"We’re not competing against each other. It’s not me and Jeff against Streeter," Elliott said. "What we’re trying to do is just give these (players) a fair opportunity to be evaluated. And I thought he did a good job."
Perhaps he could do more of it in the future.
Prowl & Growl Tour
Clemson's annual Prowl & Growl Tour has begun. Swinney and basketball coach Brad Brownell will be visiting several cities across the state to meet with fans, and the tour is stopping in Charleston this week.
The Charleston event is scheduled for Thursday in Exhibition Hall A of the North Charleston Convention Center and it begins at 5 p.m. with dinner at 6. Photo opportunities with coaches are available and there is also a question and answer session that radio host Don Munson will emcee. General admission is $30 per person, children under the age of 2 are admitted free and a reserved table for 10 guests is $400. Tickets can be purchased at charlestoncounty.clemson.alumnispaces.com/event/prowl-and-growl/.