CLEMSON – There will be some changes to the Clemson lineup in the top-ranked Tigers’ final home game of the season.
Chief among them, starting right tackle Joe Gore is away from the team this week attending to personal reasons, Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said after practice Wednesday evening.
Swinney would not rule out Gore from playing Saturday vs. Wake Forest, but named freshman right tackle Jake Fruhmorgen the starter while Gore misses an indefinite amount of time.
“He’s fine, he’s not in trouble, hasn’t done anything wrong. But he’s got a personal crisis issue he’s having to deal with right now,” Swinney said. “He missed practice yesterday and today. We will get him back probably tomorrow or Friday sometime.”
Gore has started all ten games so far this season, and was the Opening Day starter in 2014 before an appendectomy derailed his year.
This will be Fruhmorgen’s first career start, though the true freshman has logged plenty of playing time (150 snaps) over the course of seven appearances.
Meanwhile, starting right guard Tyrone Crowder (turf toe) and wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud (knee) were each ruled out for Saturday. Both players were injured Nov. 7 vs. Florida State, and are each hoping to return for the team’s Nov. 28 trip to South Carolina.
Second-string safety Jefferie Gibson and second-string linebacker Kendall Joseph were involved in a collision this week at practice, and are each undergoing concussion protocol. Gibson and Joseph have also been ruled out for Saturday.
Starting tailback Wayne Gallman (ankle) and cornerback Mackensie Alexander (knee) each remain day-to-day, with their status unclear to play the Demon Deacons. Clemson is a 29-point favorite to defeat Wake Forest, which would give the Tigers their first 8-0 ACC season in program history.