USA TODAY Sports
That was the worst Clemson basketball game that I've ever seen. Clemson has probably had more embarrassing games than the one tonight, but you'd have to go back at least ten years to find any. I don't think I've ever seen a Tiger basketball team play as poorly as the one that played tonight.
Embarrassing, pathetic, horrendous...all do a good job of describing the game tonight.
I did think we stood a chance for a little while there. When the score was tied at 0-0, and again at 2-2, I thought we were in pretty good shape. You know its been a really, really, really, really, really bad night when all you can hang your hat on is the 2-2 tie in the opening minutes.
We committed three turnovers in the opening four minutes. Devin threw the ball out-of-bounds, and Milton laid claim to the other two unforced errors. One was a horrendous pass. The other turnover occurred when he stepped on the baseline with the ball. And it's not like he was really forced into the baseline. He had an isolated one-on-one in the corner. A good player can turn that into an easy layup/dunk by just getting by their one defender. If you're not such a good player, you don't get by the defender and you pass it back out to a teammate. In the worst case scenario, you trap yourself in the corner but get bailed out by a timeout. But Milton did what he does best by going past the worst-case scenario into the Milton-scenario, which is actually worse than the worst-case scenario. In Milton-scenarios, things that you didn't even know were possible can happen. Like when he stepped on the baseline.
With a score of 8-2 at the first T.V. timeout, Brownell was so disgusted with the play of the starters that he decided to sit them on the bench for awhile. ESPN3 decided to crap out on me for a few minutes after that, but when the connection came through again, I found us coming out of a Brownell-called timeout at the 12:40 mark down 14-2. So I guess the subbing strategy didn't work.
KJ got a dunk soon thereafter to give us a whopping total of four points. We then proceeded to sit on these four points for the next five minutes, until I started wondering if we were really going to approach NIU territory. Thankfully we didn't, but we did manage to tie the season record for futility by only scoring 10 in the 1st half (also only scored 10 against Duke).
We actually were only down 23-10 with about five minutes left in the half. The only reason we were sill remotely in it at that point is because Virginia missed its first 9 three-point attempts. But their last three long ball attempts in the opening half hit the bottom of the net, and with a halftime score of 38 to 10, the game was already over.
But even with the game over, you would like to see your team go out and show some pride in the 2nd half and cut into the deficit. Instead, we let a Virginia team that stopped trying somewhere around the freaking 11-minute mark actually increase their lead on us. Allowing one of their scrubs rain down threes certainly didn't help.
The Coastal Carolina loss was embarrassing, but that game was seen by few and was really an off-the-radar game. The Duke game was bad, but Duke was ranked no. 1 at the time, so it's understandable.
But tonight was a whole new level of embarrassment. Just a few weeks ago, we beat this very same team by 15. But tonight, on national T.V., we lost to an unranked team by 37. It doesn't get any worse than that.