Shipley Perfect Fit in Riley’s Offense

Will Shipley Jason Priester All Clemson

Garrett Riley’s offense has the reputation of being an air-raid offense. However, that is not always the case.

When Clemson’s new offensive coordinator spoke with the media earlier this spring, he reiterated his offense adjusts to his personnel and not the personnel to his scheme. For proof, just take a look at Riley’s TCU offense in 2022.

The Horned Frogs averaged 193.7 rushing yards per game last season, which ranked third in the Big 12. They ranked fourth in the league in passing offense, 261.7 yards per game through the air.

The end result was a balanced attacked that led the Big 12 in scoring at 38.8 points per game.

“I do not see it as an air-raid offense,” Clemson running back Will Shipley said. “We are out there running outside zone, inside zone, counter, everything that we need, like last season. It is just a different dynamic.”

It is dynamic enough that Shipley is excited for what it means for the Tigers’ offense in 2023 and what it might mean for him and the running game as a whole.

“I always try to do my due diligence before I have a reaction. From my understanding, he has pretty much had a 1,000-yard rusher,” Shipley said. “Not only that but using me in a different way and the willingness to do that thus far, I am not worried about how many rushing yards I have. It is just about how many opportunities I get and how much can I help this offense.”

Under Riley, TCU’s Kendre Miller ran for 1,399 yards and 17 touchdowns. However, Shipley is a little more dynamic than Miller, as his ability to catch the football out of the backfield adds an element to Riley’s offense that he did not have at TCU.  

“It is kinda of what I came here to do. Just being able to expand the offense,” Riley said. “I think, there are not that many players like me. So, to be able to see that and already have Coach Riley set me out and try different things. As we learn a new offense, it has been pretty cool.”

In 2022, Shipley rushed for 1,182 yards and scored 15 touchdowns. The junior also caught 38 passes for 242 yards.

“I think I can add a whole new dimension to this offense, and I am excited to play,” he said.

“We have already seen it thus far this spring,” Shipley continued. “I am excited to see how it expands from here, as we learn the offense.”

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