Calvary Grad Clemens Flyin’ with the Eagles

Calvary Grad Clemens Flyin' with the Eagles (Image 1)

Calvary Day School grad Jake Clemens is working hard as a Walkon with the Georgia Southern Eagles.  He knows with the depth at quarterback it'll be tough to find playing time… but to be ready is the key in college.




Clemens was a star for Calvary, leading the Cavs to a 9-win season just a couple seasons ago.  He was named Region 3-A Player of the Year.



Defensive Philosophy Sharpened with
Drills and Fundamentals
Curtis keeps Eagles grounded in the basics during spring

STATESBORO, Ga. – Philosophers, generals and football
coaches can argue the merits of quotes and adages depending on their point of
view. Whether or not the quote “the best offense is a great defense,” or “the
best defense is a great offense” is applied, for Georgia Southern Football,
Coach Willie Fritz expects to have both a great offense and great defense.

While Coach Willie Fritz and Offensive Coordinator Doug Ruse are retooling the
Eagle offense into the spread option, Defensive Coordinator Jack Curtis is
tweaking the Georgia Southern defense as it prepares for a new set of opponents
in the Sun Belt in 2014. The Eagles will stay with their 4-3 base, but will
spend the spring getting back to fundamentals, evaluating and adding a few more

“It's (the 4-3) basically the same
defense we have been running for the last three years, but every year you go
back and re-evaluate how you played the last year and the game of football is
always changing, so you re-evaluate and see what worked and didn't work,” said
Defensive Coordinator Jack Curtis. “You are always looking to experiment and
get new ideas. The general philosophy has stayed the same and we're teaching it
right from the start like everybody is a freshman. We have a lot of players
back who understand the defense, so right now, that puts us ahead of the
offense just because of our understanding of the terminology.”

Now with responsibilities for coordinating the defense as well as coaching both
the cornerbacks and safeties positions, Curtis sees the advantages of having
the defensive backs together. The added bonus is the defensive expertise of
Coach Fritz.

“We have help from Coach Fritz who is really a secondary guy at heart, he's
back with us constantly working with us,” said Defensive Coordinator Jack
Curtis. “The good part about it is that we are in the same meeting room, they
hear the same terminology repeated and that enables you to build some depth.
That allows them to grasp all the concepts, and if you are preparing for future
games, and if someone gets hurt, it's not completely new to one of the other
guys, and someone is able to step in that role.”

Familiarity with the Georgia Southern
defense and the defensive coordinator will also pay benefits for the Eagle
offense. Curtis and Ruse worked together at Arkansas State and Northwestern
State and the 2014 season marks their 16th as colleagues.

“The best thing you can do to help prepare your football team is have a good
working relationship between offense and defense,” Curtis said. “The
friendship, the camaraderie over the years has been great.”

CREEK INSURANCE: A couple of Eagle players not involved in
drills moved to the south side of the defensive field as “creek insurance” to
keep any errant balls from venturing into “Beautiful Eagle Creek.” Coach Fritz
has planned practices during the spring to emphasize the passing game and get a
high number of reps for the quarterbacks, wide receivers and running backs.

BACK TUESDAY, OFF WEDNESDAY: Monday's practice was a make-up date after
wind and rain that rolled through Statesboro cancelled Friday's session. The
Eagles will be back at practice on Tuesday at 4:15 p.m. with sessions Thursday
(4:15 p.m.) and Friday (4:45 p.m.) before the first scrimmage on Saturday at
Paulson Stadium. The scrimmage will begin at approximately 9:30 a.m.

THE GNATS ARE BACK: As the Georgia Southern Football team wrapped up
practice Monday afternoon on the banks of “Beautiful Eagle Creek,” the tiny
flighted creatures invaded the practice fields. Temperatures hit 75 degrees in
Statesboro as the Eagles got a preview of the warmth and students flocked to
Sweetheart Circle on campus.

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