“They’re really hungry to prove that they can get it done offensively. They understand that they’ve struggled here the last couple years, and I told them that’s healthy. You guys need to have a chip on your shoulder about that and let that be a motivator, and I think that’s what they’ve gotten to and it’s fun to watch them start to meet that challenge.’’
The mentality change on offense goes beyond the numbers. From Jake Sinkovec, who converted from linebacker to fullback and shocked Miami with a first-quarter touchdown reception in the season opener, to Spiffy Evans and Johnathan Coleman, who took turns making big plays in the Eagles’ win over Maine, everyone on the field is an option.
“We just haven’t been like that the last two years,” Rettig said. “It’s something different and the guys are taking it and running with it.”
Clemson coach Dabo Swinney took notice.
“They’re just much more dynamic,” Swinney said. “They’re totally different looking at them as far as throwing the football and their efficiency at throwing the ball and really understanding how to attack a defense. I’m very impressed with what they’re doing offensively.”
For Rettig, though, it’ll take more than numbers for the offense to get its point across.
“We’ve got to win,” he said. “At the end of the day, no one cares if we’re the leading ACC passing team. If you’re not winning, it doesn’t matter. But one thing I’ve learned my whole life is being under the radar is probably the best thing you can be. Even if we were 3-0 we’d probably be still under the radar.”
Julian Benbow can be reached at email@example.com.