I think Clemson running backs may still be running free somewhere in Winston-Salem. They sure spent a lot of time running free at BB&T Field on Saturday. After producing only one 1st down in its first three possessions, the Tiger offense found its groove, and never looked back in a 63-3 rout of Wake Forest. It was easily the the most complete game Clemson has played this season. The 60 point margin of victory is a school record for ACC wins.
The Tigers stable of backs had TD runs of 59, 70, 64, 65, and 52 yards. The Tigers finished with 471 yards rushing, the most in a game for the team since an 82-24 win over Wake in 1981. It was an impressive showing. Three different backs went over 100 yards on just 10 carries each, and Adam Choice finally broke a long one after having coming so close to doing so a couple of times in recent games. It made for in interesting looking box score.
Hard to ask for more balanced production than that..... Paws Up
This was dominating performance from the defensive unit. No, this might not be a very good Wake team, but their offense had been moving the ball on teams. They came in averaging well over 400 yards a game yet managed only 249 total yards against the Tiger defense. The big guys up front set the tone and set it early. The front four wreaked havoc throughout the game, disrupting almost everything the Deacs attempted to do, often getting to the running back while he was still being handed the ball from the QB..... Paws Up
This group picked up right where it left off last week with its run blocking. On some of those long TD runs, the backs were untouched. There were huge running lanes for those guys to run through. However, the pass blocking on that right side, particularly at RG, is still an issue that has to get fixed. After the day this team had running the ball though..... Paws Up
After a miserable game last week vs Syracuse, Amari Rogers was back to looking comfortable fielding punts, and I never tire of seeing BT Potter boom kickoffs out of the back of the end zone. He even kicked two PATs in this one..... Paws Up
This guy can do it all. He has made a habit out of catching passes few others could, but in this one he showed us he can punt and still play QB. How awesome was that and how much will we miss this guy when he is gone? Relish every moment..... Paws Up
With Trevor Lawrence taking the reigns at QB full time, the hope was to see the TEs more involved in the passing game. So far, that just has not happened. Braden Galloway and Garrett Williams combined for 2 catches for 2 yards yesterday. For this offense to reach its full potential, the TEs have to be more involved in the downfield passing game. For a lot of the first half the Wake DBs were giving the WRs ten yard cushions in this game. Not surprisingly, the Tigers took what they were giving them and emphasized the WR screen game throughout much of that first half. Two catches for 2 yards though? They have to be better than that..... Paws Down
And in other games
After going up 27-7 early in the third on the rival Hurricanes, the Noles allowed Miami to reel off 21 unanswered points to pull off the 28-27 win. Did anyone really expect FSU to be sitting at 3-3 six games into the Willie Taggart era..... Paws Down
What an odd game. Mizzou seemed to be in command up 23-14 at the half, despite having only 2 TDs to show for five trips inside the red zone, but then the rains came and the wheels fell off. I am still not sure how Missouri lost this game. Terrible play calling. An ill-advised onside kick attempt early that actually wasn’t an onside attempt according to Barry Odom. Yeah, not sure I buy that one coach. It was about as embarrassing as the conditions at Billy B due to the rain..... Paws Down
That’s all I have for this week. Be sure to check back with STS for more from the win over Wake Forest, and leave your own Paws Up, Paws Down takes in the comments.