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Clemson Vs. Virginia Notes

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Clemson Looks for 4-0 Start Clemson is looking for its first 4-0 start to a season since 1989. That year Clemson won its first four games, including a 34-23 conquest at Florida State, then lost at Duke, 21-17. Clemson had risen to number-seven in the nation before the loss to Duke that year. Clemson has been 4-0 just 11 times in history, just three times since 1959. Clemson was 4-0 three times in the 1980s, 1981, 1987 and 1989. Clemson already has a 3-0 record in the bank. This is just the 20th time in history that Clemson has been 3-0, just the fifth time since 1961.

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.

Dantzler Leads ACC in Rushing and Passing Clemson’s quarterback Woodrow Dantzler leads the ACC in both rushing and passing efficiency. No player in ACC history has ever done that over the course of the season. The last Clemson player to lead the Tigers in rushing and passing over the course of the season is Don King in 1953. Dantzler is ranked second in the nation in passing efficiency and is 38th in rushing entering this week’s play. The junior signal caller averages 91.7 yards rushing and has an efficiency rating of 185 for the first three games of the season.

Clemson’s starting quarterback has been amazingly productive so far this year. He has been Clemson’s quarterback for 114 of the 180 minutes in the first three games and Clemson has scored 127 points during that time, better than a point a minute. He has quarterbacked 28 possessions and Clemson has scored 16 touchdowns in those possessions. Clemson has also scored three field goals and punted just seven times in those 28 possessions. Eleven times he has taken Clemson to a touchdown on a drive that has taken less than two minutes in terms of possession time.

Dantzler broke two Clemson records in the season opening win over The Citadel. His .941 completion percentage (16-17) broke a 41-year old Clemson record. The previous best was a 90 percent turned in by Harvey White against South Carolina (9-10) in 1959. Dantzler also broke the Clemson record for passing efficiency given a minimum of 15 attempts. His efficiency rating of 247.2 for that game was also a Clemson record, breaking the mark of 240.4 by Jimmy Addison against Virginia in 1966.

Dantzler Already 13th in Total Offense Woodrow Dantzler has been very effective in terms of total offense in this Clemson attack. He has been at the controls of the Clemson offense for the majority of the snaps in 10 games (eight as a starter, two games off the bench when Brandon Streeter was hurt) in his Clemson career. In those 10 games he is 141 for 240 passing, a 58.8 percentage. He has 14 touch-down passes and just five interceptions in those 10 games. He has passed for 1939 yards and rushed for 814 yards in those 10 games. That is an average of 194 yards a game passing and 81.4 yards a game rushing, giving him an average of 275 yards a game in total offense.

Dantzler is now 13th on Clemson’s career total offense list with 3072 yards. He became the 13th member of Clemson’s 3000-yard total offense club with his 323 yards of total offense against Wake Forest. In that game he had 166 rushing and 157 passing, the second time he has had at least 150 of each in the same game. He is the only Clemson player to do that. He also did it against Maryland last season. There have been just 16 300-yard total offense games in Clemsn history. Dantzler has three of them, all within his last 10 games.

Last Outing Clemson 55, Wake Forest 7 Woodrow Dantzler picked up 323 yards of total offense in just 35 minutes of play, leading Clemson to a 55-7 win over Wake Forest on September 16. It was the third straight win to open the season for Clemson, the first time since 1991 that Clemson has started 3-0. Wake Forest, who held Clemson’s offense to just 12 points in 1999, fell to 0-3.

Clemson scored three touchdowns and two field goals in the first half. Bernard Rambert had a pair of 13-yard scoring runs in the first half. Dantzler then led Clemson to a pair of touchdown drives on the first two possessions of the second half to put thegame out of reach. He hit Travis Zachery with a 52- yard scoring pass with 11:04 left in the third to give Clemson a 41-0 lead. Later in the period, reserve quarterback Willie Simmons connected with fellow freshman Kevin Youngblood with a 30-yard scoring pass.

Clemson dominated in every area. The Tigers gained 623 yards of total offense, second highest figure in Clemson history. A total of 436 of those yards were on the ground, seventh best total in Clemson history. Dantzler’s 166 led the rushing attack, the second highest quarterback rushing total in Clemson history. Zachery had 73 yards rushing and 86 receiv-ing. Clemson had 30 first downs, most by a Clemson team since 1983 against Maryland. Reserve running back Keith Kelly added 93 yards rushing, all in the second half. It was the highest rushing total for a Clemson first-year freshman since 1994.

The defense allowed just 32 yards of total offense for the first three periods. Wake Forest had 95 of its 159 yards of total offense on two runs against the second-team defense in the fourth quarter. Clemson had 13 tackles for loss and five sacks. Keith Adams led the way with 16 tackles, while Chad Carson added 11. Robert Carswell went over the 300-tackle mark for his career and broke Terry Kinard’s Clemson record for career tackles by a defensive back.

Clemson Records Second Greatest Total Offense Day Clemson is coming off its second most productive total offense day in school history. The Tigers gained 623 yards of total offense in the 55-7 win over Wake Forest, 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 he 105-year history of Clemson football the Tigers are now 96-3-1 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 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.