Kelly Bryant named Clemson's starting QB

play
Clemson's run game poised for big 2018 season (0:55)

The return of Clemson RB Travis Etienne and QB Kelly Bryant makes the Tigers a versatile threat in the run game for the 2018 season. (0:55)

Clemson quarterback Kelly Bryant will start Saturday against Furman, holding off a push from true freshman Trevor Lawrence.

At least for now.

Coach Dabo Swinney has maintained throughout the spring and offseason that Bryant remained ahead of Lawrence, an early enrollee and top-rated quarterback in the ESPN 300 class of 2018. Though it was no surprise to see Bryant atop the depth chart for the season opener, it is expected that both Bryant and Lawrence will play against Furman.

Bryant started every game last season for the Tigers, leading them to the College Football Playoff. But once Clemson signed Lawrence in February, the speculation began about whether the freshman could unseat the veteran this season.

Lawrence wowed many with his spring game performance, especially with his arm, and continued to make strides during fall camp. Though Bryant proved to be more steady throughout the offseason, Lawrence will be given opportunities to earn more playing time, especially if he can make big plays in games.

Last week, Swinney said Bryant's confidence is "night and day from where he was this time last year."

"His confidence is tremendously higher, the game is just slower for him," Swinney said. "As a result, he's playing faster. He's processing things faster. He's being very consistent with his decision-making. He's throwing the ball extremely well down the field. He's been very accurate on our intermediate throws. Just really all of it."