Monday, October 10, 2011

Morris won't protect Clemson QB Boyd

Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris said he's confident quarterback Tajh Boyd will play Saturday at Maryland, after suffering a left hip strain in the third quarter against Boston College.

But if Boyd is noticeably limited by the injury, Morris indicated he's rather play freshman Cole Stoudt than significantly limit what the Tigers do offensively.

"If he can't give us the best chance to win the game, we'd put someone else in who can,'' Morris said Monday. "We have to be what got us to 6-0.''

Boyd was knocked out of the BC game early in the third quarter when Eagles lineman Max Holloway hit him in the legs. Boyd couldn't initially get up under his own power, causing a hush in the crowd of about 80,000 at Death Valley.

"The way he fell, I think it scared him -- it was an awkward fall,'' Morris said. "He's a competitor. I think he'll play.''

Boyd told Morris Monday he's still quite sore, but hopes to practice Tuesday. Stoudt completed six of 10 passes in relief of Boyd, and figures to get more reps in practice this week, if only to give Boyd some chance to heal.

"Cole will be fine,'' Morris said. "If he needs to be ready, I'll get him ready. I guess I'll have to work this week.''

Morris said the only significant difference between Boyd and Stoudt is Boyd's superior arm strength on long-ball throws. Morris thinks the experience Stoudt went through in the BC game will be a plus later this season.

"It forced Cole into a game not over yet,'' Morris said. "It forced him to perform.''

On a separate issue, Morris said he was happy with the tailback Andre Ellington's 100-plus yard game against BC, but that he must practice more to maximize his contribution. Ellington has been nursing a hamstring pull and a thigh bruise, limiting his work during the week.

-- Rick Bonnell