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Clemson-Duke Football Game Notes

Clemson-Duke Football Game Notes

Sept. 27, 2000

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Clemson vs. Duke Series *Clemson holds a 28-15-1 lead in the series with Duke, a series that dates to a 20-6 Duke win in Durham in 1934. Duke won the first four games of the series, all played at Duke.

*Duke never played at Clemson until 1959, a 6-0 Tiger victory.

*While Clemson holds a commanding 15-4-1 lead in the series at Clemson, the two teams are tied 11-11 in games played at Duke.

*Clemson has won eight of the last 10 overall and 15 of the last 19.

*Duke last defeated Clemson in 1998 at Duke, 28-23.

*Duke has not won at Clemson since 1980, a 34-17 Blue Devil triumph that was led by Blue Devil quarterback Ben Bennett.

*Duke defensive coordinator Bob Trott was Clemson’s defensive coordinator in 1990, the year Clemson led the nation in total defense. The Tigers finished that season with a 10-2 record.

Big Day for Reames Family Clemson receiver and punt returner Joe Don Reames returned a punt 69 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter of Clemson’s 31-10 victory over Virginia. It was an important score, bringing the Tigers to a 10-10 tie at the time.

That was the first kick return for a touchdown in the Tommy Bowden era at Clemson(16 games). It was the first Clemson punt return for a score since the last regular season game of 1997 when Tony Horne raced 40 yards for a score at South Carolina. Clemson has not had a kickoff return for a touchdown since 1990.

Reames had 9 punt returns for 59 yards this season prior to that return, then exeeded his return yardage in that one return in Charlottesville. It was an entertaining run in that he changed directions four times. The return was featured on ESPN’s Plays of the Week on September 24. He resembled the cartoon character “The Roadrunner” on that return. It is a fitting comparison because Reames has a tatoo of the character on his left leg.

Reames was one of two members of his family to receive headlines in the sports page on Sunday morning. His brother, Britt Reames, pitched the St. Louis Cardinals to a 6-5 win over the Chicago Cubs in Wrigley Field on Saturday. The Cardinals final out and Joe Don’s punt return took place within a half hour of each other. Britt Reames is now 2-1 this year for the Cardinals and is a candidate to make the team’s playoff roster.

Clemson Seeks Fifth Win in September Clemson will be seeking its fifth win in the month of September when it travels to Duke this weekend. The Tigers have never had five wins in the month of September and have had just three months in which it has won five games in its 105- year history.

Clemson last had a 5-0 month in November of 1991. Clemson used the perfect November to finish the regular season 9-1-1 and capture the ACC Championship. That was the last time Clemson won the ACC title.

Overall, Clemson has had three 5-0 months. The others are October of 1977 and October of 1981. Clemson ended the 1977 season with an 8-3-1 record and advanced to the Gator Bowl, Clemson’s first bowl season in 18 years. Clemson won the National Championship in 1981.

Clemson last had a chance to go 5-0 in September in 1989. The Tigers were 4-0 to open the season, then traveled to Duke to take on a 1-3 Blue Devil team. But, Steve Spurrier’s team upset seventh ranked Clemson, 21-17, on a rainy day in Durham.

Adams on Display at College Football Hall of Fame Clemson linebacker Keith Adams is one of 10 active players featured in the “Race for the Pantheon 2000” exhibit at the College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, Indiana. The display, located in the main exhibit hall, includes Adam’s jersey and photos of the Clemson junior linebacker. It was unveiled September 8.

The “Race for the Pantheon Display” features what the College Football Hall of Fame considers to be the top 10 players in college football. Adams was the only linebacker listed and is one of four juniors involved. He is a first-team preseason All-American for 2000 after earning All-America honors last year as a sophomore when he led the nation in tackles for loss and total tackles.

The 10 players Featured in the exhibit are:

Name Pos. Yr. School
Keith Adams LB Jr. Clemson
Drew Brees QB Sr. Purdue
Alex Brown DT Jr. Florida
Jamar Fletcher DB Jr. Wisconsin
Casey Hampton DT Sr. Texas
Steve Hutchinson OG Sr. Michigan
Freddie Milons WR Jr. Alabama
LaDainian Tomlinson RB Sr. Texas Christian
Michael Vick QB So. Virginia Tech
Chris Weinke QB Sr. Florida State

Bowden Coached at Duke Clemson head Coach Tommy Bowden has been to Wallace Wade Stadium before….many times. Bowden was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Duke from 1984-86. That was his third different school, but his first job as a coordinator. During that time, Duke was 0-3 against Clemson, including a 21-9 Tiger victory at Duke in 1985. In Bowden’s first year as Clemson Head Coach, the Tigers defeated Duke in Death Valley 58-7.

Clemson Has Struggled at Duke And speaking of struggling in games at Duke, the Tigers are just 3-3 at Wallace Wade Stadium since 1985. That 1989 upset win by Duke over Clemson is the most famous example. The Tigers were 4-0, including a 34-23 win over a Florida State team that would end the season ranked second in the final Coach’s poll. The Tigers had five interceptions that day on defense, but Clemson fumbled the return on two of those occasions. That 1989 Clemson team that ended the year with a 10-2 record, featured future All-Pro players Levon Kirkland, Chester McGlocton, Terry Allen, Chris Gardocki and Ed McDaniel.

As stated, Clemson has just a 3-3 record at Duke since 1985. The cumulative score of those six games is Clemson 100 and Duke 93. Clemson lost the last time it traveled to Duke, 28- 23. Prior to that, Clemson scored exactly 13 points in three straight games at Duke, but won two of the three. Clemson has averaged just 16.7 points a game at Duke in the last six contests in Durham.

Last Year vs. Duke Clemson had one of its finest all-around performances in years in a 58-7 victory over Duke in Death Valley last season. The 58 points were the most ever by Clemson (5-4, 5-2) against Duke. The Tigers, who moved into second place in the ACC with the win, outgained the Blue Devils 558-202, had more than twice as many first downs (29-14), and scored eight touchdowns.

The 558 yards of total offense tied for the seventh most in a game in Clemson history. The Tiger defense was also outstanding, sacking Duke quarterbacks eight times, including a record-setting four by Keith Adams, and forcing four interceptions.

Clemson had another 200-yard rushing and 200-yard passing day, totaling 319 passing yards and 239 rushing yards. Brandon Streeter had the finest “Senior Day” game by a quarterback in Clemson history, completing 22 of 30 passes for 279 yards and two touchdowns. He played just three quarters and led the Tigers to scoring drives on their first five possessions.

His favorite target was Rod Gardner, who caught 10 passes for 122 yards. Seniors Brian Wofford and Mal Lawyer both caught touchdown passes in a fitting end to their last games in Death Valley. With nine combined catches in the game, they became the most prolific duo in Tiger history in terms of receptions. They combined for 217 career catches after Wofford’s 18-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter.

Travis Zachery had his most productive day as a Tiger with 141 yards rushing on only 17 carries for an 8.3 average. He also had four rushing touchdowns, becoming just the sixth Tiger to score four touchdowns in a game. Freshman Bernard Rambert added 49 rushing yards on 10 carries. Scottie Montgomery led the Blue Devils with five catches for 94 yards, a 44-yard punt return, and five kickoff returns for 99 yards (237 all-purpose yards).

Clemson took its opening possession 66 yards in five plays to take an early 7-0 lead. After Wofford out-muscled a Blue Devil defender on a 42-yard pass from Streeter, Zachery took an inside handoff 14 yards for six on the next play.

Robert Carswell intercepted a Spencer Romine pass on the ensuing drive to set up Clemson’s 12-play, 41-yard drive capped by Zachery’s eight-yard rush on another inside handoff play out of the shotgun. Clemson upped its lead to 21-0 on its next possession when Streeter connected with Lawyer on a fourth-and-10 from the 25. Wofford’s 28-yard reverse set up the score.

Duke threatened on its next possession, driving as far as the Clemson 16, but Carswell picked off a Romine pass in the endzone. The Tigers then drove 71 yards in 10 plays capped by Tony Lazzara’s 26-yard field goal. Streeter was 4-5 for 75 yards on the drive. Clemson scored on its fifth straight possession when Zachery scored from nine yards, capping a seven-play, 53-yard drive to give Clemson a 31-0 lead with 4:30 left in the second quarter.

Duke scored on the ensuing drive when Letavious Wilks rushed six yards to paydirt, capping a 74-yard, eight-play drive. Richmond Flower’s 35-yard, “lying-on-his-back” catch on fourth down set up the score. Both teams were 3-4 on fourth down attempts.

Zachery scored his fourth touchdown when he broke several tackles and sprinted 44 yards for the score with 8:03 left in the third quarter. It was the longest rush of his career. On the next possession, Clemson drove 68 yards on nine plays capped by Wofford’s 18-yard catch.

Two plays later, Terry Jolly picked off a deflected pass and raced 20 yards to give Clemson a 51-7 lead. It was the first interception return for a touchdown by a Tiger lineman in 35 years. Woodrow Dantzler led Clemson on its final scoring drive (12 plays, 80 yards) in the fourth quarter. Dantzler connected with Jackie Robinson for a 25-yard score.

Adams, who seemingly lived in the Duke backfield all game, led the Tiger defense, as he posted 14 tackles, including six for loss and four sacks, both Clemson single-game records, to go along with a caused fumble. Thanks to Carswell and the rest of the secondary, Duke was held to 171 yards passing and no passing touchdowns despite entering the game averaging 304 yards per game over its last four games. Jolly added two tackles-for-loss and a sack to go along with his interception.

Crutchfield Posts Top Game as a Tiger Clemson cornerback Darrel Crutchfield had his best game as a Clemson Tiger in the victory over Virginia. The senior from Jacksonville, FL had a career best seven individual tackles and a career best four passes broken up in keying a secondary that held Virginia quarterback Dan Ellis to 17-39 passing for only 170 yards. Crutchfield’s pass broken up total was just one off the Clemson single game record of five by Perry Williams against Virginia Tech in 1985.

Crutchfield has made a great comeback after suffering a torn ACL against Florida State last year. He is a big reason Clemson ranks first in the nation in pass efficiency defense (72.50). So far this season, Crutchfield has 12 tackles and five passes broken up.

Clemson Looks for 5-0 Start Clemson is off to a 4-0 start, its best start since 1989 when Clemson was also 4-0. Clemson’s hopes of a 5-0 start ended that year on September 30, 1989 at Duke. This weekend’s game will be played on September 30. Clemson was ranked seventh in Associated Press entering that game in 1989 at Duke and the Blue Devils were just 1-3 entering the contest. Clemson is ranked seventh in AP this week and is facing an 0-4 Duke team.

Clemson was last 5-0 in 1987 when the Tigers actually started the year 6-0. Clemson has been 5-0 just eight times in history. Clemson got off to 6-0 starts in 1900, 1928, 1929 and 1930. Clemson got off to a 5-0 start in 1940, Frank Howard’s first year, and of course was 6-0 in 1987. Clemson had an undefeated 11-0 season in 1948 and was 12-0 in 1981, Clemson’s only National Championship season in history.

In recent years Clemson has not gotten off to a great start often, yet has been resilient, making improvement over the course of the season. Clemson has been to a bowl game 16 of the last 23 seasons, yet has been 2-0 just four times in that era. Clemson had a 12-0 season in 1981 of course, and was 6-0 to start 1987.

Adams Has Tackle for Loss in 16 Straight Games Butkus Award candidate Keith Adams is back in the lead on the Clemson team in total tackles with 50. The junior has one more tackle than classmate Chad Carson, who has 49. Both linebackers have 24 first hits. Adams leads the team in tackles for loss with three and is tied with Nick Eason for the team lead in sacks with three.

Adams has at least one tackle for loss in every game this year and 16 in a row over two years. If he records a tackle for loss at Duke he will tie the Clemson record for consecutive games with at least one tackle for loss, a mark held by former All-American Anthony Simmons. Simmons streak went over the 1996 and 1997 seasons.

Adams has been Clemson’s team leader in tackles in each of the last three games, including a high of 16 against Wake Forest in the third game of the season. His tackle total is below what it was last year, but he is averaging a tackle every 4.0 plays, better than the 4.7 plays per tackle last year when he led the nation with 186 total tackles.

Clemson Politically Correct Team Clemson might be the most politically correct team in the country. The Tigers are the only school in the nation with a Gore and Bush on its roster. Buddy Gore III is a walk-on placekicker who has never played in a game, while Jovon Bush is a second team defensive tackle who has six tackles in the first four games.

Gore is the son of former Clemson All-ACC running back Buddy Gore, who was Clemson’s first 1000-yard rusher back in 1967. He is still fourth in Clemson history in rushing and still holds the career record for all-purpose running yards per game.

No word on whom Gore and Bush will vote for in the upcoming election.

Clemson Records Second Greatest Total Offense Day Clemson had its second most productive total offense day in school history in the win over Wake Forest. The Tigers gained 623 yards of total offense in the 55-7 win, 436 on the ground and 187 in the air. The only total offense figure that is higher is the 756 yards Clemson accumulated against Wake Forest in 1981, Clemson’s National Championship season. Clemson now has just four games of 600 yards or more.

The 436 yards rushing ranked in a tie for seventh best single game total in school history. The record is 615 against Georgia Tech in 1903. The modern record (since 1937) is 536 against Wake Forest in 1981. The 436 yards against Wake Forest were the most by a Clemson team since 1992 when the Tigers had 440 in a win over UT Chattanooga.

Clemson Head Coach Tommy Bowden often states that when Clemson is gaining a lot of yards on the grounds the result is usually a victory. That has been the case for the Clemson program overall. In the 105-year history of Clemson football the Tigers are now 97-3-1 when gaining at least 300 yards rushing. The 436 yards against Wake Forest were a high for the Tigers in the Tommy Bowden era. Clemson added 327 more rushing yards in the win at Virginia and now ranks fifth in the nation in rushing offense with a 301.25 figure.

Clemson had 30 first downs in the win over Wake Forest, most first downs by a Clemson team since the Tigers had 30 against Maryland in a victory in 1983.

Clemson has 3 of top 8 Rushers in ACC Clemson’s offense has the reputation of an attack that likes to throw a lot of passes. Clemson did set many passing records last year. But, Clemson has really excelled in terms of rushing offense so far in 2000. Clemson has averaged 301 yards a game on the ground in the first four games, tops in the ACC by a large margin. In fact, Clemson averages twice as many rushing yards per game compared with any other team in the league.

A look to the ACC stats shows that Clemson has three of the top 8 rushers in the ACC. Woodrow Dantzler is first at 123.8 yards a game, while Travis Zachery is fourth at 74.2. Keith Kelly, a freshman who is really Clemson’s third team tailback, stands eighth.

Zachery a Key to Clemson Offense Travis Zachery will be a key to Clemson’s rate of success on offense this year. The junior running back is Clemson’s top returning rusher with 1455 career yards, including a team best 820 last year. He actually had 827 in 10 regular season games last year, then had -7 in the Peach Bowl when he suffered a dislocated elbow, allowing him to play just five snaps.

So far this year Zachery has rushed for 297 yards, an average of 74.2 yards per game. He also has 154 more yards receiving and 30 on punt returns, giving him 498 all-purpose yards this year, fifth best in the ACC.

Zachery was significant in Clemson’s 38-point perfor-mance against The Citadel in the opener. He gained 52 yards on the first Clemson play of the game, his longest rush of the year and longest run by a Clemson running back since 1996 when Raymond Priester went 65 yards against South Carolina.

Zachery had 86 yards rushing and 51 receiving, plus eight on punt returns for 145 total. He continued his productivity with 67 yards and three touchdowns against Missouri.

In the win over Wake Forest, Zachery picked up 73 yards rushing and 86 receiving. He was closing in on a 100- yard day in both areas, something no Clemson player has ever done in the same game. He did not play the last 25 minutes of the game.

Zachery scored 16 touchdowns a year ago, second highest figure in Clemson history and he ranked ninth in the nation in scoring. Only the 17 touchdowns scored by Lester Brown in 1978 is more. Zachery has shown an ability to catch the ball out of the backfield and has 40 catches for his career, just 5 away from the Clemson career record for a running back.

Zachery now has 27 touchdowns for his career, five away from tying the Clemson career record held by Lester Brown, who had 32 between 1976-79. At Zachery’s rate he will eclipse that record by midseason this year.

Clemson Career Touchdown Leaders
Rk Player Years Rec
1. Lester Brown 1976-79 32
2. Fred Cone 1948-50 31
3. Ray Matthews 1947-50 28
Terry Allen 1987-89 28
Kenny Flowers 1983-86 28
6. Cliff Austin 1978-82 27
Travis Zachery 1998-00 27
8. Emory Smith 1993-96 25

Clemson Ranking Highest Since 1991 Clemson has been ranked in the top 20 in both major polls for each of the first six rankings this year. Clemson’s 4-0 start has elevated the Tigers to seventh in AP and eighth in ESPN/USA Today Coach’s Poll. Clemson was 17th in AP and 19th in the USA Today/ESPN Coach’s polls in the preseason.

This #7 ranking is the highest Clemson has been ranked since October 1, 1991 when Clemson was sixth. That year, Clemson got off to a 3-0 start and ranked sixth in the nation. But, Georgia ended Clemson’s season opening streak in resounding fashion (27-12), sending Clemson to a #18 ranking on October 8th. That October 1, 1991 #6 ranking is also the last time Clemson was in the top 10. The last time Clemson was ranked in the top five was September 12, 1988, when Clemson was ranked third in the nation.The Tigers were knocked out of that top five ranking by Tommy Bowden’s father. Bobby Bowden’s Florida State team defeated Clemson 24-21 in the famous “Puntrooskie Game” and the Tigers have not been back in the top five since.

Clemson’s highest ranking ever is number-one. That has taken place twice, November 30, 1981 and January 3, 1982 (the final poll for the 1981 season).

Clemson Has 186 Points in Four Games Clemson is fourth in the nation in scoring with 186 points after just four games, a 46.5 average. Clemson opened the season with a 38-0 win over The Citadel, then defeated Missouri in the second game 62-9. Tommy Bowden’s team followed that with a 55-7 win over Wake Forest, then defeated Virginia in Charlottesville, 31-10. The 186 points is a school record for the first four games of the season and tied for the most in Clemson history in any four-game period.

Clemson had consecutive wins in November of 1950 over Duquesne (53-20), Boston College (35-14), Furman (57-2) and Auburn (41-0) on the way to completing an undefeated season under Frank Howard. That is the only time in school history in which Clemson has scored at least 35 points in four straight games.

Clemson’s 62 points scored against Missouri in week two rank as the most by a Tiger team in any game since the National Championship 1981 season when the Tigers defeated Wake Forest 82-24, still the highest point total by one team in any game involving two ACC teams. Clemson’s 53-point victory margin against Missouri was the best by a Tiger team since the season opener of 1990 when Clemson defeated Long Beach State, 59-0.

The Tigers scored at least 50 points in consecutive games in wins over Missouri and Wake Forest, a first in school history. Clemson had at least 38 points in three straight games (first three games of the season), the first time that has hap-pened since 1983 when Clemson defeated Georgia Tech (41- 14), Virginia (42-21) and Duke (38-31) in consecutive games. Clemson also did it in 1982 and 1950.

Scoring Points Nothing New for Bowden Teams Scoring a lot of points is not a new experience for Tommy Bowden coached teams. Between his 22 games at Tulane and his 16 games as Clemson head coach, he has had 17 games in which his team has scored at least 40 points in a game. Even the 62 points the Tigers scored against Missouri were not the most by a Bowden coached team. His Tulane team of 1998 defeated Southwest Louisiana, 72-20. The last game he coached at Tulane, the Green Wave scored 62 in a 62- 30 win over Louisiana Tech.

Overall, Bowden coached teams have scored in the 70s on one occasion, scored in the 60s three times, scored in the 50s on five occasions and scored in the 40s eight times. For his 38 games as a Division I head coach his teams have scored 1381 points, an average of 36.3 points per game.

Clemson on/close to Record Pace in Many Areas It is still very early, but Clemson has been operating at a record rate in many areas, especially on offense. Clemson has averaged 46.5 points a game through four games, far ahead of the 38.0 per game put up by Clemson’s 1901 team under John Heisman. The 510.8 yards a game are nearly 100 yards a game ahead of the standing record of 427.8 yards a game. The same goes for passing efficiency. Below are some areas where Clemson is operating at near or above the record rate:

Category 2000 Record
Points/Game 46.5 38.0 (1901)
Touchdowns/Game 6.3 4.8 (1948)
Total Offense/Game 510.8 427.8 (1978)
First downs/Game 24.5 22.75 (1978)
Passing Efficiency 151.3 148.2 (1950)
Scoring Defense 6.5 4.5 (1939)
Yards/Play Offense 6.6 6.16 (1950)

James Making Impact on Defensive Front Clemson fifth-year senior Freddie James is making a name for himself in his final year as a Tiger. The native of St. Stephens, SC made his first college start against Wake Forest and had a lot to do with Clemson holding the Demon Deacons to just seven points and 159 yards of total offense.

James played a career high 31 plays and made two tackles, and caused a fumble. In the win over Missouri the previous week, James had a career high five tackles, all first hits. For the season, James has 12 tackles, 10 of which have been first hits. He ranked 11th on the team in tackles. For his career, he has played in 25 games and has 42 career tackles.

“Freddie James has been one of the heroes of our defense this year,” said Clemson Defensive Coordinator Reggie Herring. The Tigers are leading the nation in total defense and scoring defense so far this year. The only chemical engineer-ing major on the Clemson team, James is a strong team leader who is vice president of Clemson’s LIFELINE organization, a leadership group composed of Clemson football players. The group is active in terms of team leadership and community service activities.

James is part of an athletic family. His cousin is Lance Legree, starting defensive lineman at Notre Dame. Both are fifth-year seniors, both wear #90, and they were born just eight days apart. Legree was born three days before Christmas in 1977, while James was born five days after Christmas in 1977.

Carson Has Shown Improvement Clemson’s leading tackler through three games was not All-American linebacker Keith Adams. Adams, who was featured in ESPN the Magazine the last issue in September, is having another standout season.

But, classmate Chad Carson, a second-team Academic All-American last year, has 49 tackles in four games, just one behind Adams. Adams has played four more snaps. Carson had a career high 18 tackles in the win over Missouri in the second game of the year and had 11 against Wake Forest. He added 10 more against Virginia.

Carson and Adams are quite a duo. Both are juniors from Georgia. In fact, they used to tackle each other in high school games. Carson was a running back most of his career at Woodward Academy in Georgia. Adams was the top linebacker at rival Westlake High School in College Park, GA. Carson has his own weekly column on in conjunction with the Bowl Championship Series site.

Clemson Outstanding in the Redzone One of the reasons for Clemson’s success this year has been scoring in the redzone. Clemson has been in the opponent’s redzone 20 times already this season and has scored 13 touchdowns and four field goals. One missed field goal, and the end of the game when Clemson had a large lead, are the only times Clemson has failed to convert when starting a series inside the opponent’s 20.

Clemson Leads Nation in Three Categories Clemson leads the nation, or is tied for the lead nationally three different areas, total offense, scoring defense and pass efficiency defense. Clemson is also ranked in the top five in the nation in five other categories.

Clemson’s excellence on both sides of the ball is shown in the NCAA stats. Clemson leads the nation in total offense and is tied for first with Texas Tech in scoring defense and pass efficiency defense. Clemson is fifth in rushing offense and ninth in rushing defense. Clemson is fourth in scoring offense and tied for first in scoring defense.

Clemson in the National Statistics Rankings
Total Offense 510.8 1st
Scoring Defense 6.5 1st
Pass Efficiency Defense 72.50 1st
Total Defense 190.3 2nd
Scoring Offense 46.5 4th
Fewest Passes Had Intercepted 1 4th
Rushing Offense 301.3 5th
Rushing Defense 85.5 9th
Turnovers Gained 11 10th
Pass Efficiency Offense 151.2 10th
Fumbles Recovered 6 11th
Turnover Margin +1.5 12th

Clemson 31-0-1 With 200 Yards Passing and Rushing Clemson gained 236 yards rushing and 222 passing in the win over The Citadel in the season opener. The Tigers had 206 rushing and 275 more passing in the win over Missouri. That kind of balance, in particular gaining at least 200 yards rushing and 200 yards passing in the same game, means a Clemson victory. In history, Clemson has a 31-0-1 record when it has at least 200 yards of each.

Clemson had three such games last year, wins over North Carolina, Maryland and Duke. That means Clemson has had five games of at least 200 yards of each in the 16 games Tommy Bowden has coached at Clemson. The program had just 28 such games in the first 103 years of Clemson football prior to Bowden’s arrival.

Carswell Breaks Kinard’s Record Senior safety Robert Carswell eclipsed a record held by one of Clemson’s all-time greats in the Wake Forest game. With his eight tackles, Carswell moved ahead of Terry Kinard to set the school record for tackles in a career by a defensive back. Carswell now has 309 career tackles, ahead of the 294 set by Kinard from 1978-82. Kinard was a two-time consensus All-American at Clemson, including a unanimous selection in 1982 when he was National Defensive Player of the Year. Kinard was named Clemson’s greatest player of the 20th Century by Sports Illustrated earlier this summer.

That said, Carswell certainly should take pride in this record. He had 129 tackles last year to set the Clemson record for stops by a Tiger defensive back. But, Carswell can do more than just tackle, he had six interceptions last year to tie for the ACC statistical championship in that category. He was named a preseason first-team All-American by Playboy, Clemson’s first Playboy All-American since Anthony Simmons.

Carswell now is ranked 10th in Clemson history in total tackles regardless of position with his 309 total. He needs just eight to jump all the way to seventh in Clemson history.

Top Career Tackle Totals by Clemson Defensive Backs
Rk Player Years Tot
1. Robert Carswell 1997-00 309
2. Terry Kinard 1978-82 294
3. Robert O’Neal 1989-92 252
4. Brian Dawkins 1992-95 251
5. Gene Beasley 1985-88 241

Clemson Leads ACC in Many Areas Clemson leads the ACC in 10 different statistical categories. Such dominance is usually something you see from Florida State in the ACC stats, but the Tigers are off to quite a start when it comes to offensive and defensive statistics. Clemson leads the ACC in scoring offense (46.5 PPG) and scoring defense (6.5 PPG). The Tigers also rank first in rushing offense, pass defense, total defense, pass efficiency defense, first down defense, first down offense, 3rd down conversion offense and defense.

Points Off Turnovers Impressive While turnover margin is important, points off turnover might be even more important. Clemson was about as productive as you can get in terms of converting turnovers into points in its 62-9 win over Missouri.

Clemson forced six turnovers in the game, most forced by a Tiger team since 1995 when Clemson forced seven in a win over NC State in Raleigh. Clemson scored 34 points off those six Missouri turnovers. When you figure the maximum you can score (assuming you try to kick the extra points and not go for two) is 42 points, that is good production. Missouri scored just three points off Clemson’s one turnover.

This year, Clemson has a 69-10 advantage when it comes to points off turnovers. In the 16 games Tommy Bowden has coached at Clemson the margin is 169-54. Clemson forced six turnovers against Missouri, three fumbles and three interceptions.

Tiger Mascot Getting a Workout After each Clemson score the Tiger mascot does pushups equal to Clemson’s new point total. That has been a tough job for Clemson mascot Jon Potter so far this year. The senior from Anderson, SC tied one Clemson mascot pushup record and set another in Clemson’s season opening win over The Citadel. First, he tied the record for pushups in a first quarter (42), then set the home night game record with 135.

Potter more than doubled that total in the Missouri victory, a 62-9 Clemson triumph. He did 310 pushups on the afternoon, a game that was played in 82 degree heat. That was the most pushups by a Clemson mascot since 1981 when Ricky Capps did 465 in Clemson’s 82-24 win over Wake Forest.

Potter, who had to get an IV in the Clemson locker room after the Missouri game, now has 785 pushups in four games this year. He has made a good start toward the single season record of 1124 by Zack Mills in 1978. The tradition of the mascot doing pushups dates to the 1978 season.

Potter follows the Clemson team very closely. He actually lives with Clemson starting defensive lineman Jason Holloman and starting punter Jamie Somaini.

Young Leads O-Line Center Kyle Young has been Clemson’s highest graded offensive lineman in each of the last three games. The junior first-team Academic All-American had an 80 percent grade and four knockdown blocks from the Clemson coaches for his 55 plays against Missouri. For his performance he was named ACC Offensive Lineman of the Week.

He played his finest game as a Clemson Tiger in the win at Virginia in the fourth game of the season. He registered a career high 16 knockdown blocks, most by a Clemson lineman in seven years. He graded 93 percent for his 65 plays and had a 100 percent grade in terms of effort from the Tiger offensive line coaches.

Young was Clemson’s highest graded lineman in eight of the 12 games last year. The native of Clemson is the grandson of Ed McClendon, who was a member of Clemson’s 1939 Southern Conference Championship team. His brother, Will Young, was an All-ACC player for the Tigers in 1995. The offensive line, which also features graduate students Theo Mougros and John McDermott, had a strong game against Virginia helping Clemson to 481 yards of total offense.

Gardner Countdown to Clemson Records Rod Gardner will be chasing a couple of Clemson records this season. With his record 80 catches for a record 1084 yards last year, Gardner has vaulted from virtual obscurity to a record challenger.

Gardner enters the Duke game with 125 receptions for 1673 yards. He ranks fifth in career receptions and 6th in reception yardage. If Gardner has 55 catches for 1233 yards this season, he will break both records, marks held by former All-ACC receiver Terry Smith. Smith had 162 catches for 2681 yards in his career.

Coming into last year Gardner had just 28 catches for 364 yards. An 80-catch season will obviously put him over the top, but the yardage record will be a challenge. Entering this season, the native of Jacksonville, FL trails only Smith, Perry Tuttle, Jerry Butler, Brian Wofford and Tony Horne in receptions.

Horne reached the final 10 of the Biletnikoff Award in his senior year (1997) when he had 70 catches. Gardner broke his record for a season last year. Horne, now the top kickoff return player in the NFL with the St. Louis Rams, is the only Clemson receiver in school history to reach the final 10 of the Biletnikoff Award voting. (The award did not exist when Butler and Tuttle played).

Clemson Career Reception Leaders
Rk Player Years Rec
1. Terry Smith 1990-93 162
2. Perry Tuttle 1978-81 150
3. Jerry Butler 1975-78 139
4. Brian Wofford 1996-99 138
5. Rod Gardner 1997-00 125
6. Tony Horne 1994-97 120
7. Phil Rogers 1965-67 106
8. Mal Lawyer 1996-99 99
9. John McMakin 1969-71 93
10. Terrance Roulhac 1983-86 92
Clemson Career Reception Yardage Leaders
Rk Player Years Rec
1. Terry Smith 1990-93 2681
2. Perry Tuttle 1978-81 2534
3. Jerry Butler 1975-78 2223
4. Brian Wofford 1996-99 1857
5. Tony Horne 1994-97 1750
6. Rod Gardner 1997-00 1673
7. Gary Cooper 1985-89 1592
8. Glenn Smith 1949-51 1576
9. Terrance Roulhac 1983-86 1487