Offense: Deon Cain, WR, So: Cain was able to give the Tigers two much needed first-half touchdowns as Clemson jumped out to a big lead before halftime. Cain also led the Tigers in receiving yards (98) on four catches. Huge day for the Tiger receiving core, and Cain was a huge part of it.
Defense: Ben Boulware, LB, Sr: Boulware left it all on the field and then some. He put up a huge emotional performance that helped the Tigers get the win. Stat-wise, he had 18 tackles (8 solo), a fumble recovery, 3 tackles for loss, a sack, and broke up a pass. It was obvious that he took this game personally and played out of his mind. He was definitely one of the more exciting players to watch, and a huge reason that Clemson came away with the win Saturday night.
Special Teams: Artavis Scott, WR/KR, Jr: When things were looking bleak for the Tigers, Artavis came in and delivered one of the biggest plays of the game. When Louisville jumped out to an 8 point lead with just under 8 minutes to go, it was looking rough for a Tiger offense that had struggled in the second half. However, Artavis Scott provided the necessary spark with a long KO return that set up a touchdown pass to Mike Williams, which brought Clemson within 2 points. That return helped bring Death Valley back to life and changed the momentum to fuel Clemson’s comeback. It was awesome seeing Clemson getting big plays on kick returns again, which is something that has seemed to be scarce since the days of CJ Spiller and Jacoby Ford. Hopefully, we’ll see a lot more of Artavis Scott running back kicks this season.
Moment of the Game: The Stop. That’s what I’m calling it. On 4th down, Lamar Jackson tosses a swing pass out to James Quick, who had a great game, and Marcus Edmonds was in the right position to force him out of bounds. Sure, I’ve heard all the talk about how he could have cut the other way or could have fought for the extra yards. I’ve heard the complaints about the chain crew and where the yard marker was placed. It’s irrelevant. Clemson’s defense stopped Lamar Jackson & Co. on 4th down when it mattered, and Clemson came away victorious. I’m proud of this team, and I’m proud of this defense for finishing the job.
Atmosphere: A special shout out to the Clemson fans. I’ve been going to games almost all of my life, and this was the loudest I’ve heard Death Valley. Louisville opening up the game with two false start penalties was due to the crowd noise. Louisville getting a false start penalty on the crucial 4th down in the 4th quarter was due to the crowd noise. The atmospheres for 2006 Georgia Tech, 2013 UGA, and 2015 Notre Dame were incredible, but this week was another level. Death Valley was packed out, and no one was beating us in that stadium. Gameday was the most crowded I’'be ever seen it at Clemson; Bowman was flooded in orange and purple, and it was great. This was a memorable weekend, and the fans need to pat themselves on the back for contributing to that.