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Clemson vs. Temple Game Notes

Clemson vs. Temple Game Notes

Oct. 9, 2006

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Clemson vs. Temple Series *This is the third meeting between Clemson and Temple. Clemson has won both meetings by the same score, 37-7. The 1991 Tigers won at Death Valley by that 37-7 count, then the 2005 Tigers won at home by that score. This is the first meeting between the two schools outside of Clemson. *This will be Clemson’s fifth game against a team from the Mid American Conference. Clemson has a 4-0 record against teams currently in the MAC, a 2-0 ledger against Ball State and a 2-0 record against Temple. Head coach Tommy Bowden is 2-0 against MAC teams, a victory over Ball State and a win over Temple.

2005 Game vs. Temple Clemson racked up over 500 yards of total offense for the first time since 2003 in a 37-7 win over visiting Temple in 2005. It was the second meeting all-time between the Tigers and the Owls, with the first coming in 1991. Clemson also won that game by a 37-7 score.

The Tigers wasted little time getting on the scoreboard after forcing Temple to go three-and-out on its opening possession. Charlie Whitehurst hit three consecutive passes, with the third a 41-yard touchdown strike to Kyle Browning over the middle. The drive took five plays and lasted only 1:41.

An Owl punt was partially blocked by C.J. Gaddis, and the Tigers started their next drive at the Temple 36. Clemson moved the ball down to the one-yard line, but an illegal procedure penalty moved the Tigers back, and a 21-yard Jad Dean field goal made the score 10-0.

Temple picked up one first down before being forced to punt again, and Clemson began its next drive with a reverse to Chansi Stuckey that covered 18 yards. Three plays later, Reggie Merriweather ran around left end untouched for a 21-yard touchdown. It was Clemson’s second five-play touchdown drive of the day.

Temple hat its first scoring threat of the day in the second quarter, as Mike McGann completed 6-6 passes in leading the Owls move down to the Clemson 14. A third-down screen pass to Umar Ferguson looked as though it would go for a first down, but Gaddis knocked the ball loose and Dorell Scott recovered at the four. The two teams went into halftime with Clemson leading 17-0.

Neither offense could get anything going to begin the second half, and the Tigers began their second drive of the third quarter at their own 10. Whitehurst hit Stuckey for 17 yards on a third-down play, and two plays later connected with Aaron Kelly for a 41-yard hookup. Clemson could not pick up another first down, and Dean came on and made his second field goal of the day, this time from 27 yards out.

On the second play of the next Temple drive, Jamaal Fudge intercepted a McGann pass that was tipped by his own receiver. The Clemson safety returned the ball eight yards to the Owl 34.

On the next play, Whitehurst faked a handoff and found a wide-open Kelly behind the Temple secondary for a 34-yard touchdown pass. It was the first career touchdown for Kelly.

Temple had its most impressive drive of the day in the fourth, as the Owls marched 80 yards in 15 plays. McGann capped the touchdown drive with a four-yard pass to DoMerio Hamilton on third-and-goal.

Tyler Grisham returned the ensuing kickoff 24 yards out to the Clemson 45, and Tiger backup quarterback Will Proctor came into the game and connected on his first two passes. After a Merriweather run, Proctor’s first career touchdown pass went to La’Donte Harris for 16 yards. It was also the first career touchdown reception for Harris.

Kelly caught seven passes for 155 yards, with the yardage total resulting in a Clemson freshman record. Whitehurst connected on 19 of 27 passes for 307 yards, and Proctor added 52 yards through the air. The 359 passing yards were the third most in a single game in Tiger history, and the most ever in a game at Death Valley. Merriweather contributed 108 yards (on 17 carries) of the 514 yards of offense for Clemson.

Freshman Antonio Clay, making his first start, led the Tigers in tackles with nine, including two tackles for loss and a sack. Adams also added 2.5 sacks. In all, 10 different Tigers had tackles for loss in the game, and Clemson had 14 total stops behind the line. Temple had only 12 yards rushing for the game.

Tigers and Owls Met in 1991 Clemson and Temple have met just once previously. That game took place on September 21, 1991 and it resulted in a 37-7 Tiger victory. Clemson’s defense that year led the nation in rushing defense, was fourth in total defense and 10th in scoring defense, and it enhanced its numbers that day when it held Temple to 89 yards rushing in 46 attempts. The Owls under Jerry Berndt gained just 104 yards in total offense in 58 plays for the day, just 1.8 yards per play.

A look to Clemson’s roster that day tells the story. Clemson’s point prevention unit included future first-round draft choice Wayne Simmons, 12-year NFL defensive tackle Brentson Buckner, four-time Pro Bowl player Chester McGlockton, 10-year NFL outside linebacker Levon Kirkland, and nine-year NFL linebacker Ed McDaniel. Those players combined for nine tackles for loss on the day.

Clemson was led on offense by sophomore running back Ronald Williams, who had 14 rushes for 86 yards. Quarterback DeChane Cameron completed 7-12 passes for 85 yards and two touchdowns, while the late Terry Smith had four receptions for 60 yards.

Temple actually took a 7-0 lead in the first period when quarterback Trent Thompson hit tight end Bryant Garvin for a one-yard touchdown pass. Temple had 81 yards and five first downs in the first period, then had just 23 yards of total offense and just one first down over the last three periods.

Clemson tied the game at 7-7 on a trick play. Wide receiver Larry Ryans scored on a 25-yard run on an end-around with 10:28 left in the second period. Clemson scored 14 in the second period and 13 in the third to put the game away and capture its 10th straight home victory. Clemson improved its record 2-0 and moved to seventh in the AP poll after the victory.

Cody Coached at Both Schools There aren’t a lot of common denominators between Clemson and Temple, but Josh Cody is one coach who had a prominent role in the history of both institutions. Cody coached the football and basketball teams at both schools.

In his first year as head football coach at Clemson (1927), he led the Tigers to a 5-3-1 record, then guided Clemson to back-to-back 8-3 seasons in 1928 and 1929, before an 8-2 mark in 1930. It marked the first time in Clemson history and the only time until 1977-79 that Clemson had three consecutive seasons of at least eight wins.

Cody considered leaving for another position after the 1928 season, but Clemson students, faculty, staff and supporters raised money to buy him a new Buick, and they presented it to him on the steps of Tillman Hall in the spring of 1929. Cody remained with the program through the 1930 season and he finished with a 29-11-1 record. That included a 4-0 record against South Carolina, still the only Clemson coach with a perfect record against the Gamecocks, given a minimum of three games as head coach.

Cody also coached the Clemson men’s basketball teams during this era. His best season was 1929-30 when the Tigers were 16-9. His final year as the basketball coach was the 1930-31 season.

Upon leaving Clemson, Cody returned to Vanderbilt (his alma mater) as an assistant football coach and a head basketball coach. He was the head football coach and athletic director at Florida from 1936-1939.

In 1940, Cody was a line coach at Temple and was appointed Head Basketball Coach in 1942. He held that post until he became athletic director in 1952. During his tenure as basketball coach, Cody racked up 124 victories and guided the Owls to the NCAA Tournament in 1944, the first NCAA Tournament appearance in the history of Owl basketball. That team reached the Elite Eight of the tournament.

In 1955, he coached the football team at Temple after the original coach resigned on the eve of the season. He passed away in 1961 at the age of 69.

Adams Looks to Tie Sack Streak Record Clemson senior bandit end Gaines Adams has recorded at least one sack in four consecutive games. The streak started when he had 2.5 sacks at Florida State in the third game of the year, and it includes the Wake Forest game where he had a pair of sacks. Adams now has 6.5 sacks for the season to lead the ACC and rank ninth in the nation.

If Adams can record a sack against Temple in Bank of America Stadium on October 12 he will tie a Clemson record for consecutive games with at least one sack. The existing mark is five in a row set by three players.

Chester McGlockton had a five game streak over the end of the 1989 season and the beginning of the 1990 season. Keith Adams had a five-game streak with a sack in 1999 and LeRoy Hill had a five game streak in 2004. All three of those players went on to NFL careers. McGlockton was a four-time Pro Bowl player, while Adams is currently with the Miami Dolphins and Hill is starting with the Seattle Seahawks. He started in the Super Bowl last year.

Adams is now tied for fifth in Clemson history with his 22 career sacks. He is tied with Brentson Buckner (1990-93) and Bryant McNeal (1999-02). If Adams can record a sack against Temple he will move ahead of Buckner while playing in the stadium where Buckner played over his last five years in the NFL. Buckner was a starting defensive tackle for the Carolina Panthers from 2001-05.

It is interesting to note that all the players above Adams on the sack list played or are still playing in the NFL.

Clemson #12 Ranking Best since 2000 Clemson is ranked 12th in both polls this week, the highest ranked ACC team in both polls. Georgia Tech is ranked 13th by AP and 15th by USA Today, the second highest ranked ACC team. Those two teams will meet at Death Valley on October 21. Virginia Tech is 22nd by AP and 17th in the coaches poll, while Boston College is 25th in the coaches poll.

This is the second consecutive week Clemson has been the highest ranked ACC team in each poll. Prior to that you have to go back to the October 22, 2000 poll to find the last time Clemson was the top ranked team from the league. Clemson actually was the highest ranked team among ACC schools for three consecutive weeks in October of 2000.

Clemson’s #12 ranking this week is its highest of this season and the highest ranking for the program in the AP poll since the October 29, 2000 poll when Clemson was 10th by AP. Clemson is also ranked 12th in the Harris Interactive poll this week.

The win on September 16 over ninth-ranked Florida State was the second highest ranked team Clemson has defeated on the road in its history. The only win that is ranked higher is the 10-8 victory over eighth-ranked North Carolina in 1981.

Clemson has been ranked in the top 25 of both polls in six of the seven polls so far this year and for 10 of the last 11 over two years. Clemson was 21st in the final polls last year.

Tigers in NFL Stadiums When the Tigers face Temple on October 12, Clemson will make its first appearance in an NFL stadium since 2003 when the Tigers defeated sixth-ranked Tennessee in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl at the Georgia Dome, the home of the Atlanta Falcons. That win actually broke a five-game losing streak for the Tigers in NFL stadiums.

This will mark the first time Clemson has played a regular season game at an NFL stadium since 1981 when Clemson defeated Tulane in the Superdome in New Orleans. Clemson first played in an NFL stadium in 1966 when the Tigers played Southern Cal in the Los Angeles Coliseum, then the home of the Los Angeles Rams. Clemson has an overall record of 5-7 in NFL stadiums.

Tigers Overcome 14-Point Fourth Quarter Deficit Clemson overcame a 14-point fourth-quarter deficit to defeat Wake Forest 27-17 on October 7 in Winston-Salem. It marked just the third time in Clemson history that the Tigers overcame a 14-point deficit in the fourth quarter to gain victory. The other two occurrences took place on the road as well, at Duke in 2002 and at Virginia in 1980. Two of the three 14-point, fourth quarter comebacks have come under Tommy Bowden.

Clemson scored 24 points in the fourth quarter at Wake Forest, its highest scoring fourth quarter since the 2002 Duke game when it also had 24 points.

Aaron Kelly.

Clemson then took the lead with 7:22 remaining on a 72-yard touchdown run by freshman C.J. Spiller, the longest run by a Clemson running back in 13 years. Jad Dean added a 23-yard field goal with 1:12 left to account for the final 10-point margin.

The 14-point comeback tied for the fourth biggest comeback in Clemson history based on total points trailed at any time in a game. The record is a 28-point comeback at Virginia in 1992. Clemson trailed in the first half of that game 28-0, then won 29-28.

Clemson now has nine comebacks from at least a 14-point deficit at any time in a game and four of the nine have been coached by Tommy Bowden.

Tigers Need One Win to be Bowl Eligible Clemson needs just one victory to reach the six-win mark and become bowl eligible. A victory on October 12 against Temple would make the Tigers bowl eligible, the second earliest on the calendar Clemson has reached the six-victory mark. The Clemson record for reaching bowl eligibility on the earliest date was set in 2000 when Clemson had its sixth victory by October 7. Clemson has reached six wins by October 28 nine times in its history.

Kelly Steps up Production With the injuries to Chansi Stuckey and Aaron Kelly is now the top receiver among active Tigers. Kelly has 17 receptions for 223 yards and two touchdowns, including a 20-yard score at Wake Forest that tied the game at 17-17 in the fourth quarter. Kelly had five receptions for 91 yards in that contest, tying his season high in receptions and establishing his season high in reception yardage.

Kelly’s career high in both categories took place last year against Temple, the team the Tigers will face this Thursday evening in Charlotte at Bank of America Stadium. Last year at Clemson, Kelly had seven receptions for 155 yards and a touchdown against the Owls. That reception yardage total was a record for a Clemson freshman in a single game and it was the third highest yardage game by an ACC receiver during the 2005 season.

Many Happy Returns Twice this year Clemson has had two returns for touchdowns in the same game. In the season opener against Florida Atlantic, Sergio Gilliam took a fumble back 31 yards for a score.

In the fifth game of the year against North Carolina, Ford had a 94-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and Gaines Adams returned a fumble 66 yards for a score in the victory over Wake Forest.

With the five returns for touchdowns, this 2006 Clemson team is already tied for second best in school history in this category for a season. Only the 1990 team that led the nation in total defense had more with seven returns for touchdowns. The 1997 Clemson team also had five returns for touchdowns that year.

Injury Bug Continues to Deplete Roster Tommy Bowden has had many injuries to deal with this season and the list grew after the victory over Wake Forest. Wide receiver Rendrick Taylor, Clemson’s third leading receiver with 12 receptions for 152 yards, suffered a broken arm against the Demon Deacons and is out for the season. Taylor had started four of the first six games for the Tigers.

In practice leading up to the Wake Forest game, All-ACC receiver Chansi Stuckey suffered a broken foot and missed that game. He will miss at least the next two games as well, meaning Clemson will be without two of its top three receivers for at least the Temple and Georgia Tech games.

Earlier this year, starting linebackers Anthony Waters (torn ACL) and Tramaine Billie (broken ankle) suffered injuries. Waters is out for the year after playing just 38 snaps in his red-shirt senior year. Billie has missed the first six games and will not play against Temple. His status for the remainder of the year is uncertain at this time.

Starting safety Reggie Merriweather has missed the last two games with a sprained ankle, but could return against Temple.

Freshman defensive tackle Etta Etta-Tawo played the first five games this year, but had tests to determine the cause of a heart ailment on October 6 and missed the Wake Forest game.

Clemson Second in the Nation in Total Offense Differential An example of Clemson’s success on both sides of the ball at the same time is shown in the difference between the Tigers total offense stats and total defense stats so far this year. Clemson is the only team in the nation to rank in the top 10 in total offense and total defense and has out-gained its opposition by an average of 206.1 yards per game, second best in the nation. Only Louisville with a +257.8 total offense margin is better so far this season.

The only teams ranked in the top 20 in the nation in total offense and total defense are Clemson, Louisville, Tulsa, Missouri, Boise State and Florida.

Clemson ranks fifth in the nation in total defense so far this year, allowing 236.2 yards per game. That is the exact same figure as Clemson’s rushing offense average for the season, a rare statistical oddity for sure. Clemson is 10th in the nation in total offense with a 442.3 figure. Clemson is on pace to establish a school record for total offense margin over the course of a season. The existing record is 165.2 yards per game by the 1978 Clemson team. The best previous total offense margin under Tommy Bowden for the course of a season is +90 yards per game by the 2000 Tiger team.

This Clemson team is attempting to become just the sixth team in school history to rank in the top 25 in the nation in total offense and total defense in the same year. It was last done in 1991 when Ken Hatfield’s ACC Championship team ranked 25th in total offense and fourth in total defense. The 1978, 1963, 1960 and 1957 Clemson teams also accomplished the feat. No Clemson team has ever ranked in the top 10 in both categories in the same year. The 1978 team is the only squad to rank in the top 15 in both.

Clemson in Charlotte Clemson will make its first trip to Charlotte since 1954 when the Tigers meet Temple on October 12 at Bank of America Stadium. Clemson last played a game in the Queen City in 1954 when the Tigers defeated Wake Forest, 32-20. Ken Moore had an 81-yard punt return for a touchdown to key the victory for the Tigers. Charlie Bussey, currently the director of Clemson’s lettermen’s association, was 2-3 passing for 51 yards. Clemson scored 25 points in the second half to gain the victory after trailing 13-7 at the half.

Clemson has won its last three games in Charlotte and has a 10-1-1 record in the city since 1929. Clemson and NC State met in Charlotte for six consecutive years between 1939-44. The 25-6 victory in 1939 was on the way to a 9-1 season and the first top 20 season in Clemson history.

Davis-Spiller Strong Combination Clemson running backs James Davis and C.J. Spiller have been a strong running back combination for the Tigers this year, especially in recent weeks. Over the last two weeks they have combined to average 234 yards per game on the ground. As a result, Clemson is averaging 236.2 yards per game rushing, sixth best in the nation.

For the year, Davis has averaged 101.2 yards per game, 17th best in the nation. Spiller is at 55.7 yards per game, but has had back-to-back 100-yard rushing games. He had 127 against Louisiana Tech and 104 in just nine carries in the win over Wake Forest.

For the year, Davis and Spiller have combined to average 156.8 yards per game (941 yards in six games). They already have a combined 15 touchdowns and have averaged 5.96 yards per rush.

If the season ended today, their 156.8 yards per game would be the fourth best two-person combination in Clemson history, the third best for a running back combination. The record is 172.4 rushing yards per game by Raymond Priester and Emory Smith in 1995. Woody Dantzler and Travis Zachery averaged 171.3 yards per game in 2000, but Dantzler was a quarterback and Zachery a running back.

Twenty years ago Clemson had a top running back duo in Terrence Flagler and Kenny Flowers. Flagler was a first round draft choice and first-team All-American in 1986. Flowers was injured part of that year and still had nearly 600 yards. That duo combined for 154.4 yards per game and a 5.88 average per carry. Davis and Spiller are currently at 5.96 yards per carry and ahead of that pace.

The record for combined touchdowns by a running back duo is 21 set by Cliff Austin and Chuck McSwain in 1982. Davis and Spiller needs just six more to tie that mark.

Tigers in the Top 10 in Eight Categories Clemson ranks in the top 10 in the nation in eight different statistical categories, four on offense, three on defense and one special teams. Clemson has never finished a season ranked in the top 10 in eight different categories.

Clemson is ranked in the top 10 in total offense and total defense, an example of the team’s dominance on plays from the line of scrimmage. The Tigers lead the ACC and rank 10th in the nation in total offense with 442.3 yards per game. Clemson is fifth in the nation in total defense with a 236.2 figure.

Clemson’s highest national ranking is actually scoring offense, where Clemson is third with an average of 40.67 points per game. in pass efficiency defense, where Clemson stands fourth in the nation with a 95.52 rating. The Tigers are sixth in rushing and sixth in fewest sacks allowed, ninth in kickoff returns.

Clemson leads the ACC in rushing offense, total offense, scoring offense, rushing defense, pass efficiency defense, total defense, turnover margin and fewest sacks allowed.

Individually, Clemson has four players ranked in the top 25 in six total categories. Jad Dean is 22nd in the nation in field goals per game with 1.33 and is23rd in scoring at 8.33 points per game.

Clemson’s Top 25 National Team Rankings •3rd, scoring offense (40.67 PPG) •4th in pass efficiency defense (95.52 rating points) •4th in fewest sacks allowed per game (0.67 per game) •5th in total defense (236.2 yards per game allowed) •6th in rushing offense (236.2 rushing yards per game) •7th in rushing defense (62.83 yards per game allowed) •9th in kickoff returns (26.5 yards per return) •10th in total offense(442.3 yards per game) *14th in tackles for loss per game (7.5) •16th in sacks per game by defense (3.17) *16th in scoring defense (14.0 points per game allowed) *19th in turnover margin (+0.83 per game) •25th in net punting (37.71)