Posted November 11, 2012 on AP on Fox
Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables knew he had talented players, even if they hadn't always shown that early on. Now, the Tigers are showing they can play a little defense, too. No. 11 Clemson put on its best defensive showing of the season, holding Maryland to 180 yards in a 45-10 victory on Saturday. The Tigers (9-1, 6-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) have been fueled all season by a record-setting offense that's scored 45 points a game during its six-game win streak. These days, the high-flying offense is backed up by a defense that seemed a lost cause earlier in the year. Venables is the first year coordinator brought in to tighten and toughen a group that gave up a bowl-record 70 points in losing to West Virginia in the Orange Bowl. Venables understands the Terrapins (4-6, 2-4) are in an injury-induced free-fall, using linebacker Shawn Petty at quarterback and without star receiver Stefon Diggs because of ankle problems. Still, there's no hiding that Clemson's finding ...
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