Hmm I do not have the problem you are experiencing. The adjustment knob is really small and the lever to tighten the jaws is underneath so it is not a problem. Do you have the screw clamp or the lever cam type. I guess I could see a problem if you have the screw tension knob instead of the lever.
Putting them in back would not make adjusting the thing all that easy. I can tie down to 28s if I wanted to without a problem of things getting in the way.