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Clemson/USC Sunday Thoughts

If you are mad as hell, here are the people who need to hear your voice.  Until we get some "legacy" members off the Board, have a change of attitude from Clemson's administration, then fix our obvious football issues, we'll continue to get the same crap result we've gotten the last portion of this season.  Don't get me wrong, this football staff looked completely inept, but they did not hire themselves.  First things first, get after the BOT, get a new AD in line in anticipation of Sleepy Don's contract expiration, then assess the football program.

I am almost to the point of not caring anymore, particularly because those involved don't seem to care and there is really nothing short of a miracle that can happen in the next week to save this crew.  It would probably be in my health interests to avoid the Clemson game next week, but like you folks, I am a glutton for punishment.  Fortunately, I get to see LSU dismantle Georgia.  Unfortunately, that game kicks off four hours before ours so I'll be watching this "Shock the World Tour" exclusively.  Yes, it is that bad.

On to the football game...First things first, the Old Ball Coach exploited Clemson's weaknesses and handed our university its ass for the third consecutive year.  You give credit where credit is due, and SOS/Ellis Johnson certainly gets it here as the Gamecocks overcame injuries, suspensions, and dismissals to win 10 on the year and whip us last night.  Congratulations to Carolina

Now I'll give you my thoughts on our Clemson Tigers.  What an effort out of our team and, most importantly, our coaching staff.  Same shit we saw last week, the week before that, then the game before that.  South Carolina was without Kyle Nunn, Marcus Lattimore, and a host of others.  With their average/below average offensive line, a quarterback who struggles with the forward pass, and a running back who has discussed leaving the program with eligibility left because he will be so far down the depth chart next year he may not even see the field, SCar was able to completely dominate Clemson's defense.  Our gap control sucked.  Tackling fundamentals sucked.  Overall aptness is pitiful.  We are 12 games into the freaking season and simply look lost the majority of the time.  Begrudgingly, I have accepted that either the defense is too complicated or our coaches just aren't getting through to the players.  This is unacceptable.

Yet Dabo will make excuses for this worthless crap.  Swinney will allow the players to dictate practice philosophy.  Practice philosophy is the reason we play more like a Girl Scout troop than a legit football team.  We are soft.  We don't play proper fundamental football.  This is an attitude issue.  What makes this so infuriating is that (A) Swinney played at Bama in the early ‘90's and (B) Dabo has a legend living down the road who will tell him how to fix this team's problems.  To point A:  I am sure Gene Stallings is most likely shaking his head watching this crap.  This is not Bebes football and I just do not understand how you can play for a coach like Stallings and not follow in his footsteps to create a tough, hardnosed football team.  Point B:  Coach Ford has been to Clemson's practices and given his opinion.  He refuses to go back because Swinney wouldn't listen to him.  I am certain that Coach Ford saw the patty cake practice and knew what the end result would be-a SOFT FOOTBALL TEAM.

This team doesn't seem to care that this season is spiraling down the crapper.  That is an attitude issue and starts from the top down.  We are all irate that the head ball coach will yell and cuss players who are doing what he and the coaches have asked yet won't say a word to a his favorites who don't give half the effort of the others.  If you are a recruit from Alabama, that's enough for the Dabs.  I would much rather see a player who actually gives a crap but has less talent out there than watching this yahoo piss away all his talent and ability.  What's so troubling is the player has the ability to be a contributor at the next level but doesn't seem to care and hasn't had the proper attitude adjustment from above because he is from the state of Alabama and Swinney won't let him quit then go back home and talk trash about the Clemson head man.

I am not sure why Andre Ellington only had 13 carries last night.  Carolina gave Clemson the run and, especially through quarter three when the game was still in hand, we refused to feed Ellington.  When your back runs as hard as AE did last night and averages over 5 ypc, you run him.  When your quarterback looks lost and is largely ineffective, run him more.  This was the only chance the offense had and we completely blew it.

Passing, Tajh Boyd was 11/29 for a grand total of 83 yards and was harassed by Carolina's front four last night.  Maybe Tajh should rethink his tweets and facebook posts, particularly when he's talking trash about a group that gets to line up against this offensive line.  All the blame doesn't fall on Boyd, though.  Sammy dropped what looked to be a long TD early and Nuk had a lot of issues last night.  If you ask me, this group looks to have regressed this season, likely because we haven't had a legit WR coach since Stockstill left nearly ten years ago.  The combination of coaching and a piss poor S&C philosophy means that these guys will likely be just as good when they leave Clemson as when they arrived.

If you couldn't tell, STS is repetitive each week because we-and by we I mean Clemson University and folks inside the football program-refuse to address core issues that have been present all along.  There is a lack of administrative support that handcuffs the AD.  We put ourselves in poor position with stupid coaching contracts that limited the last coaching search.  Inside this program, Clemson has refused to put in measures necessary to win football games.  Strength and Conditioning does not develop football players.  Our coaching staff does not develop a tough football team.  The result is what you've seen on the football field the last month.