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Breaking down the top plays from Clemson’s spring game

The Orange Team beat the White Team 19-14

NCAA Football: Clemson Spring Game Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

In a defensive battle, the Orange team, led by Kelly Bryant and Tucker Israel, beat the White Team, quarterbacked by Zerrick Cooper and Hunter Johnson, 19-14.

Neither offense looked great for extended stretches of the game but both defenses made big plays resulting in multiple stretches of punts back and forth.

With that in mind, here are some of the best plays of the game.

Bryant struggled at points throwing the ball, sometimes overthrowing a few passes, but looked explosive when he left the pocket to run the ball, either by design or to evade a pass rush.

He showed good awareness on a draw during the first scoring drive by sliding rather than taking a hit but did hurt his hand early in the game. He didn’t appear as much in the second half of the game.

On this scoring play, the Orange offense faked a jet sweep - something they ran with success during that drive to get down into the red zone. This got the defense flowing left for just a second, giving the two pulling lineman time to get over and make their blocks.

Bryant followed behind them and found paydirt, putting his Orange Team up early.

Despite the early score, Bryant struggled to find consistency, finishing with just four completions on 13 attempts.

Another standout from the Orange offense was fan-favorite and potential all-American Hunter Renfrow. Now if you watched the game you may have heard the announcers gushing over him.

My favorite story they told was about someone asking him to hold their baby when they saw him around campus. Despite knowing exactly how to haul in a football - as you can see above - Renfrow had to ask his girlfriend for some help with the kid.

He faced tight defense for most of the game but catches like this one show why he is projected to be one of the best receivers in the country next season. Whoever the starting quarterback is next season, expect them to look Renfrow’s way a lot.

After watching this game I know one thing for sure about this year’s Clemson Tigers: they are fast. Look at how explosive former sprinter Tavien Feaster is on this kick return.

He cuts it inside before bouncing it back to the sideline and exploding out past the 30-yard line.

Still don’t believe me about the team speed?

C.J. Fuller had a number of explosive plays like the one above for the Orange team. He did a great job of running upfield and immediately picking up yards instead of dancing around trying to make guys miss.

Not to be outdone, Ray-Ray McCloud had a kick return he brought out past the fifty and a few plays where he looked unstoppable.

Like I said, this team is scary fast.

This was maybe the highlight of the game. Hunter Johnson takes his drop and immediately looks left to Diondre Overton in one-on-one coverage. He floats the ball up and it drops beautifully into Overton’s hands for the Orange team’s first touchdown of the afternoon.

Johnson definitely had his share of struggles during the game. He had two plays killed by fumbled snaps and had rushers in his face throughout the day. He also had a looked like a freshman with this throw into double coverage that got picked off.

But that pass to Overton shows why Johnson was such a highly rated recruit. I think it was the best throw by any of the quarterbacks we saw this afternoon. Johnson went 5/13 for 48 yards in the game.

Tucker Israel had the best day throwing the ball, going 13/19 with 94 yards through the air. He was also the only quarterback not to throw an interception in the game. The biggest downside for Israel during the game was that he was the only quarterback without a carry during the game.

He managed the offense well and maintained multiple drives. On his touchdown, he used the play action to suck in the defense and hit Trevion Thompson in stride as he crossed the goal line.

Zerrick Cooper struggled today. He was the only quarterback not to score in the game and almost threw a second interception to Denzel Johnson. He went 11-18 with 81 yards through the air and added 26 yards on the ground but struggled to maintain any long drives for most of the game.

It is important to note that he and Hunter Johnson swapped drives for the entire game, making it hard for either of them to really get into a rhythm.