The top ranked Tigers welcomed C-USA member Charlotte to Death Valley on Saturday and were quick to show their guests some good old fashioned southern hospitality. Trevor Lawrence and Tee Higgins hooked up on a 58-yard TD strike on the teams second offensive play of the game, then never looked back in the 52-10 win. It was the kind of dominating performance you want to see from one of the nations top teams at home against a G5 team. Not a whole lot to take from this one, but there were a few things that stood out.
Much has been made of the sophomore QB’s play through the first three games. Too much in fact. No, he hasn’t been quite as sharp as he was down the stretch last season, but we were just three games in and it isn’t like the offense had been known to come out of the gate blazing each and every season. Lawrence looked pretty sharp in this one, even if it was just three series. He hit on 7 of his 9 passes for 94 yards, with 2 of those going for TDs, and looked very much like the freshman phenom from last season..... Paws Up
Ngata led the team with 3 catches. With each passing week the freshman continues to impress more and more. The coaches raved about him all spring and throughout camp and is showing he was worthy. Can you say #WRU..... Paws Up
Four games in and it is still a little odd seeing the 3-man fronts. Coming in, this defense was giving up 75 yards per game and 49er RB Benny LeMay had 81 yards, with most coming in the first half. Depending on the specific gameplan for each opponent, this group might give up a little more on the ground than what we have seen in recent seasons. The 49ers still had just 216 total yards and 11 1st downs. No concerns here..... Paws Up
Turns out this was the perfect opponent to schedule for Family Weekend. The Tigers took control early and were able to start subbing early and often. Most offensive starters were done for the night before we even got to halftime. The staff played a school record 111 players last night, and all 5 QBs got into the game. 9 RBs had carries. Dabo told reporters after the game,
The best part was watching how excited the starters seemed to be watching not only the backups, but the guys buried way down the depth chart getting their opportunity to play. That is a big part of that “culture” everyone likes to talk about at Clemson, and this program takes a backseat to no one in that department..... Paws Up
With Disney in attendance filming a movie about former Tiger Ray Ray McElrathbey, the home crowd did not disappoint. At halftime, the crowd was at its loudest when the Tigers 2006 game against FAU was being recreated for filming, including The Most Exciting 25 Seconds In Football..... Paws Up
And in other action from across the country.....
The Fighting Irish came to play, and may have earned some respect in the process. In front of a raucous crowd between the hedges, the Dawgs came back from a 10-7 halftime deficit to take a 24-10 lead in the 4th. The Irish fought back with a late score to make a game of it before losing 24-17. Yes, it was another loss in a big game for Notre Dame, but this one felt different. The Irish played physical and held up against one of the nations better teams, and did so on the road..... Paws Up
With each passing week things just seem to get worse up on Rocky Top. The Vols mustered only 3 points against the Gators, their fewest in the series since 1994, and have now lost 14 of 15 to Florida. This used to be one of the SEC’s most prominent rivalries. Tennessee used to be one of the better SEC programs..... Paws Down
Once again the Fightin’ Harbaughs proved themselves to be one of the most overrated teams in the nation. A preseason top 5 team and one many had pegged for the playoff, has now struggled to beat Army and gotten their doors blown off in Madison. To make matters worse they were coming off of a bye week, giving them extra time to prep. They turned it over 4 times, Shea Patterson barely hit on 50% of his passes, and they could not run the ball..... Paws Down
Two weeks ago the Tar Heel fans could be heard chanting “We want Clemson” after defeating Miami and moving to 2-0. Since then they have dropped games to Wake Forest and App State. Freshman QB Sam Howell tossed 3 picks in the loss yesterday and now the Tar Heel fanbase will get what they asked for as the number one team in the country pays a visit next week..... Paws Down
U of SC
Yes, the Gamecocks came into the season with the nations toughest schedule. Problem is, they haven’t even begun the tough part of it and are already 1-3. Kelly Bryant improved to 2-0 against UofSC and the Missouri defense held them to just 271 total yards. The Gamecocks are just 3-6 in their last 9 games, with those wins coming against Charleston Southern, Akron, and UT Chattanooga. When your last P5 win was almost 11 months ago and came against Ole Miss, you might want to worry about your own schedule instead of moaning about who your rival plays..... Paws Way Down
That is all we have this week. Give us some of your takes from the weekend in the comments and keep checking back with STS during the week for more analysis from Charlotte and as we look ahead to UNC.