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September 17, 2014

Jimbo Fisher

Q.  A lot of talk, obviously, in the off‑season about the Clemson front seven.  What have you seen so far out of the Tigers' secondary?
JIMBO FISHER:  Very athletic, can play a lot of different coverages.  I mean, very multiple guys that can press, have length, tackle well in space, their safeties hit very physical.  The corners do a good job, they play cover‑two and they'll blitz you and like to bring a lot of corner blitzes and things.  I think they're very multiple in where they can play.  They've got guys that can play at safety, play at nickel, very similar to a lot of the guys which we have, and I think a very athletic group of guys.

Q.  My other question, the apparent incident yesterday with Jameis on campus, has that been looked into or addressed with Jameis at all?
JIMBO FISHER:  Yes, everything has been addressed and we're getting ready for the game.  Yes, sir, it definitely has.

Q.  Going off of what was just asked about Jameis, is there a level of frustration that there's another negative headline, this one coming during such a big week for the team?
JIMBO FISHER:  You don't ever want any kind of incidences, but we have to keep learning and educating, and we have to make better decisions.  We have to make good decisions on things, and we'll continue to do that and try to educate.

Q.  Will there be any punishment?  Will he miss any time on Saturday?
JIMBO FISHER:  We're deciding.  We're talking as things go on right now.

Q.  What was your reaction when you heard this?  Do these mounting things bother you?  Do you change‑‑
JIMBO FISHER:  Any time there's an incident with one of your players, you're always concerned and you try to educate and you try to see what happened and what didn't happen and you continue to educate and develop these guys as young men, because like I say, they're still young men and they make mistakes.

Q.  Do you address it with the team at large or just individually?
JIMBO FISHER:  Yes, we do everything openly and as a family to constantly educate all of our players about every issue, not just with our players.  If they happen at another school across the country, if they happen here, if they happen there, if those instances come up, I very often open meetings up to try to point out issues and teaching points on all things that come across our desk, as many as we can, because that's the only way you can ‑‑ young people today what's going on in the world and how social media is such a big factor.

Q.  He's said in the past that he's learned to be more mature.  Is this a step back in that realm?
JIMBO FISHER:  Well, it's not something that we want or we're indicative of, and it's not a good decision.

Q.  Was it a shock to you when you heard it?
JIMBO FISHER:  I mean, it was something that has to be addressed.

Q.  Was the message you tried to convey today to Jameis and everybody, don't do stupid stuff?  What was the point you were trying to get across?
JIMBO FISHER:  Well, I mean, that you can't make certain statements that are derogatory or inflammatory in any way toward any person, race, gender of any shape or thing, and statements which you make are always going to be made more public than statements that other individuals make, and that's just the nature of the business of who you are and what you are.  That's the situation it is, and you have to understand that, even if you're amongst a bunch of people who do things.  It doesn't matter.  You have to be very intelligent about those things because people‑‑ about what you say about people, it matters.

Q.  Talk about the game this weekend.  What does this game mean for the league, having you guys take on a very good Clemson team, putting the league on a platform for 8:00?
JIMBO FISHER:  Well, 8:00 and being GameDay here, so I mean, that tells you the significance of the game and what the country thinks about both programs.  Dabo has done a tremendous job of building his program and putting them in position to be successful.  We've done a good job with our program, and I'm very proud of Clemson.  I think this has turned into a heck of a game, and like I say, last year at the Orange Bowl I was rooting for them as hard as anybody and was very proud that they won a BCS game, and our program, we have great respect for them, their players and coaches and how they do things, and I think it's a great opportunity not only for these two teams but for the ACC to showcase what kind of conference we really have.

Q.  I know they don't have Boyd anymore at quarterback, but what do you see in their offense that's different from last year?
JIMBO FISHER:  They still do a lot of the same things.  They even go back to some things they've been doing for a long time.  Chad is very creative, but they still have tremendous playmakers across the board at wide‑out, a lot of size and quickness, very good, physical backs, good offensive line, and both quarterbacks can throw it and run it.  We talk about Stoudt just being a pocket guy, but he can run, and Deshaun, they talk about the athleticism, but he can throw it, too.  I mean, really throw it.  You see a very dynamic group of guys to me.

Q.  I was wondering, in the past year with all the stuff that's gone on with Jameis, good and bad, have you seen a change in his demeanor?  Is he still a guy that's having as much fun as he was last year, or has that changed a little bit?
JIMBO FISHER:  I think he has fun, but I think he becomes a little more guarded, I really do.  But I think he still has a lot of fun, and I think it's only human nature.

Q.  For you to see someone become a little bit more guarded that was that way, is that difficult for you?
JIMBO FISHER:  No, it's not difficult, but it's just‑‑ I think it's the price you pay for being a public figure.  Now, we said athletes to an extent are going to be role models.  They've got to hold themselves to a high standard, which we agree, but at the same time then when you become the stature which he has, I think sometimes ‑‑ it's not a burden by any means because he's very successful in what he's doing, but it's something that he's more aware that people are going to be a lot more aware of him.  I think it's a product of our society today of how those things happen.

Q.  And do you think he is aware of that, that he is aware of just how people are perceiving him?
JIMBO FISHER:  There's no doubt.  There's no doubt he does.  He does.  He's got to continue to make good decisions.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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