12/29: Quick Reaction: Clemson Clobbers ND in Cotton Bowl 30-3

Dallas, TX – The phrase “a game of two halves” is commonly said, but the Cotton Bowl was a game of two quarters. 

The first quarter was a defensive slugfest – neither team could take control despite the numerous opportunities. Clelin Ferrell’s early tackle, forced fumble, and fumble recovery of Ian Book near midfield was the first big play of the game. 

Clemson scored three points off the turnover (40-yd Huegel field goal), and Notre Dame responded by marching to the nine-yard line before settling for a 28-yard Justin Yoon field goal. 

Derion Kendrick returned Yoon’s subsequent kickoff to the fifteen-yard line, where he fumbled the ball. The original ruling was that Notre Dame recovered the ball, but the booth and the big screen in “Jerry’s World” overturned the call and stated that the fumble was out of bounds before Notre Dame recovered the football. 

The call was made by the thinnest of margins – no one knows if it was indisputably out of bounds or not. It was the first in a series of lucky events for the Tigers. Notre Dame suffered various injuries on defense, 

With star cornerback Julian Love absent, Lawrence threw a 52-yard sideline touchdown to fellow freshman Justyn Ross early in the second quarter. The extra point was blocked, and the score was an easily surmountable 9-3 lead for Clemson. When the Tigers next drive ended in a missed 49-yard field goal by Greg Huegel, questions still lingered. 

Clemson’s defense held on long enough to let the offense gain momentum, or Notre Dame buckled under the weight of injuries. Either way you spin it, Trevor Lawrence took control of the game, erased the questions, and never looked back. 

Notre Dame was exposed in the middle of the field by Lawrence’s second touchdown throw to Ross – a 42-yard throw to put Clemson up 16-3 with less than two minutes in the half.

Despite the star power of Lawrence and the passing attack, the ferocious Tiger defense kept Notre Dame in check throughout the first half. For one last time, they stymied the Irish’s scoring hopes and gave Clemson 48 seconds to score. 

When Renfrow’s 32-yard catch had a 15-yard roughing the passer penalty attached to it, the Tigers took their final time-out. They had nineteen yards and nine seconds to work with. 

Tee Higgins dropped a wide open touchdown pass earlier in the game, but he redeemed himself with an incredible catch of a spinning tipped ball in the back of the end zone. 

What was a 9-3 lead with 4:56 left in the first half was now a 23-3 lead entering halftime. Originally a slugfest, the Cotton Bowl was close to becoming a blowout. 

The third quarter was similar to the first – the main difference was the scoreboard. 

The first four drives of the half were fruitless, as Clemson couldn’t extend their lead and Ian Book couldn’t put the offense on his shoulders and come back from the deficit. 

As Notre Dame neared the red zone, Ian Book’s third-and-22 pass was snatched by Nolan Turner, with the sideline erupting for the lightly recruited safety. Three plays later, Etienne broke Wayne Gallman’s Clemson single-season rushing record with a 62-yard rushing touchdown to give Clemson a 30-3 lead with two minutes left in the third quarter.

In an odd and controversial occurance on the last play of the third quarter, Isaiah Simmons’ strip and scoop for a touchdown was ruled ineligible for review because it was labeled forward progress. While the outcome of the game was virtually decided, it was an interesting sequence of events that elicited cheers and boos throughout the stadium.

The fourth quarter was mostly uneventful as the Tigers finished the last fifteen minutes of football to ensure that they would play in the national championship for the third time in four years. 

12/29: Cotton Bowl Halftime Report

Score: Clemson 23 Notre Dame 3

Key Events:

Derion Kendrick’s kickoff return was initially ruled a fumble inside the ten, but it was overturned by a sliver (out of bounds) and thus Notre Dame lost a chance to make a 3-3 tie a 10-3 lead.

The game was a defensive slugfest until Julian Love left the game with an injury – Trevor Lawrence took advantage of his absence and threw a 52-yard touchdown to Justyn Ross, the first of three first-half touchdown throws. Clemson’s last touchdown with two seconds remaining may have been the dagger for the Irish.

Positives:

Trevor Lawrence has moved within the pocket well, evading defenders multiple times to fire off a pass. Justyn Ross has played exceptionally well as his current favorite target, with five catches, 137 yards, and two scores at the half.

Clemson’s defense held on while Clemson’s offense established a rhythm and built a lead – now the Tigers can play with their ears pinned back and even more aggressively.

Areas for Improvement:

Clemson’s pass protection is not doing Trevor Lawrence any favors. Despite his two scoring touchdowns, he has taken major hits that could impact his play in the second half.

The Tigers have made several poor plays on special teams: a barely overturned fumble on a kickoff return, a missed 49-yard field goal, a blocked extra point, and a punting average of 38 yards per punt make for a discouraging special teams performance.

What to Watch:

Clemson’s last touchdown with two seconds left in the half gave the Tigers a major boost into halftime. If Notre Dame wants to close the 20-point lead, they will need to have Julian Love and others healthy, and gain offensive momentum fast.

12/27: Cotton Bowl Preview

Unless Oklahoma wins the national championship, an undefeated team will win the national championship for the first time in the CFP’s five-year history. Furthermore, if Clemson or Alabama wins the champion will be the first 15-0 FBS National Champion. Two of the three undefeated teams will face off in the infamous stadium known as “Jerry’s World” as the Cotton Bowl hosts Clemson and Notre Dame. 

Each team has faced adversity throughout the year, but this will be each team’s toughest test. Notre Dame has the signature win against a highly ranked opponent that Clemson does not have – a 24-17 win against Michigan in the season opener. On the other hand, Clemson played an extra game when they defeated Pittsburgh in the ACC Championship game.

To get the elephant out of the way – it is unlikely that Dexter Lawrence, Braden Galloway, or Zach Giella will play in the Cotton Bowl. Coach Swinney expressed his support for the trio as they tested positive for trace amounts of a banned substance likely found in dietary supplements (unmarked). Losing junior draft prospect Dexter Lawrence will hurt Clemson significantly in the Cotton Bowl, while losing current role players Giella and Galloway will hurt in 2019 as they will likely face a one-year suspension. While the suspensions are unfortunate, Clemson has depth at the defensive tackle position to handle the loss of Lawrence.

Both teams changed quarterbacks midstream from more run-centric players to more pass-centric players and subsequently transformed their offenses into complete threats. Both of senior quarterbacks lead their teams to signature wins (Notre Dame vs Michigan, Clemson at Texas A&M). Notre Dame’s junior Ian Book replaced Brandon Wimbush while Clemson’s true freshman Trevor Lawrence replaced Kelly Bryant. 

Notre Dame runs the ball slightly more than Clemson, and they tend to rely on one running back. Dexter Williams is Notre Dame’s starting running back, and he has averaged almost eighteen attempts per game in his eight games. Clemson utilizes more running backs than Notre Dame, as Etienne only carries the ball 13.5 times per game. 

 In the passing game, both teams are formidable but the storyline is flipped. Clemson passes more than Notre Dame and uses more receivers (eight WRs with ten or more catches), whereas Notre Dame relies on their three main wide receivers more often. What Notre Dame has that Clemson lacks is a true threat from the tight end in the passing game – Alize Mack has 34 catches on the year, which is almost double the seventeen catches Clemson’s tight ends have combined in 2018.

While both defensive and offensive lines for both teams are quality, Clemson holds the advantage in the trenches. Clemson’s incredibly deep defensive line will cause problems for any offensive line, especially one that is good but not elite like Notre Dame’s. 

The Irish have an excellent passing defense, but in order to take advantage of it they will have to make Trevor Lawrence uncomfortable in the pocket (see the first half of the Boston College game). While the Irish have two excellent defensive ends in Julian Okwara and Khalid Kareem, it takes more than two linemen to generate a pass rush for sixty minutes. 

Notre Dame’s back seven is among the best in the nation, with Julian Love as an elite corner and Jerry Tillery as an elite linebacker. Their linebackers are capable of containing Clemson’s run game, and their secondary is a big reason why they boast an elite passing defense. This will be the Tigers’ toughest test on defense, as there is no weak link to exploit.

The pundits and bookies think that Clemson should win this game easily, and on paper it looks as if they should. Championship football is usually close though, and in that case special teams plays a vital role. The Tigers have been up and down on special teams this year, and they need an elite performance on special teams to win if the game is close.  

Oddshark’s projected score is Clemson 45.8 – Notre Dame 31, and Clemson is favored by 12.5 points. The over/under is 56.5, and sixty percent of the bets have been placed on the over. 

Prediction: Clemson 31 Notre Dame 17

Statement from the Autonomy 5 Conferences on today’s Senate Commerce Committee hearing about NIL Legislation

The following is a joint statement with the Atlantic Coast, SEC, Big Ten, Big 12 and Pac 12 conferences related to today’s Senate Commerce Committee hearing on Name, Image and Likeness legislation:

 

The Autonomy Five Conferences thank Chair Maria Cantwell and Ranking Member Roger Wicker for today’s hearing and their determination to set a fair and enforceable national standard on NIL. Only Congress can pass a national solution for student-athlete NIL rights. The patchwork of state laws that begins on July 1 will disadvantage student-athletes in some states and create an unworkable system for others. As leaders in college athletics, we support extending NIL rights in a way that supports the educational opportunities of all student-athletes, including collegians in Olympic sports who comprised 80% of Team USA at the Rio games. We continue to work with Congress to develop a solution for NIL and expand opportunities.

SEC To Allow Immediate Eligibility for Intraconference Transfers

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (June 3, 2021) – The Southeastern Conference announced it will allow immediate eligibility for intraconference transfers following a vote today by the SEC’s Presidents and Chancellors.

 

The change in policy, which takes effect immediately, will better align with NCAA legislation adopted in April 2021 that established a universal one-time transfer opportunity applicable to student-athletes across all sports.

 

As a result of the SEC’s new policy, student-athletes who transfer directly within the Conference will no longer be required to serve an automatic year in residence at their new school before being eligible for competition.

 

“This is an important measure to further support student-athletes throughout the Southeastern Conference,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. “While maintaining the expectation that coaches and others avoid improper recruiting, this change will ensure that student-athletes who enroll at an SEC member institution will enjoy the flexibility afforded to other student-athletes across the nation.”

 

In order to gain immediate eligibility, a student-athlete will need to declare his or her intent to transfer by February 1 for Fall sports, May 1 for Winter sports and July 1 for Spring sports.  NCAA rules include similar deadlines except the NCAA deadline for Fall sports is May 1.

 

“The SEC has established a deadline for declaring an intention to transfer in Fall sports as February 1 in order to create time windows that are more consistent across Fall, Winter and Spring sports,” Sankey said.

 

In other action, the SEC Presidents and Chancellors approved the following proposals:

 

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives – To encourage, facilitate and assist member institutions in attracting and hiring historically underrepresented minorities in the leadership of their athletics departments, particularly in the roles of athletics director, head coach, and senior woman administrator (SWA) and in positions that typically lead to employment in the positions of athletics director, head coach, and SWA. (Establishes SEC Bylaw 23)

 

Restriction Against Participating in Distribution of Conference Funds due to Postseason Ban in Basketball or Football – To clarify and simplify an existing bylaw to specify that an institution receiving a postseason ban in basketball or football from the NCAA or the Conference shall be limited to only 50% of the Conference’s revenue distribution derived from postseason revenue in the affected sport. Further, to establish that if the institution receives a second postseason ban in either basketball or football during the ensuing five-year period that the institution shall forfeit 100% of the Conference’s revenue distribution derived from postseason revenue in the affected sport during the period of the ban.  (Amends SEC Bylaw 31.26)

 

Extended Training Trips During Christmas Break – Sports other than Football, Basketball, and Women’s Rowing – To eliminate the Conference prohibition on extended training trips during an institution’s Christmas holiday break in sports other than football, basketball, and women’s rowing.  (Amends SEC Bylaw 17.1.9)

 

Nontraditional Courses from Another Institution – To specify that a current student-athlete may not use more than nine semester hours of nontraditional course work from another institution within an academic year to fulfill academic progress eligibility requirements.  (Amends SEC Bylaw 14.4.10)

 

Two-Year Eligibility – To eliminate all provisions of the two-year eligibility rule. (Eliminates SEC Bylaw 14.1.15)

 

Two-Year College Transfers – Nonqualifiers – To specify that a nonqualifier who initially enrolls at a two-year college prior to transferring to a member institution (i.e., 2-4 transfer) who does not meet Conference transfer requirements may be eligible for practice and athletically related financial aid, but may not be eligible for competition, during the individual’s initial academic year in residence. (Amends SEC Bylaw 14.5.4.2)

 

Four-Year College Transfers – Nonqualifiers – To specify that a nonqualifier who initially enrolls at another four-year institution prior to transferring to a member institution (i.e., 4-4 transfer) who does not meet Conference transfer requirements may be eligible for practice and athletically related financial aid, but may not be eligible for competition, during the individual’s initial academic year in residence. (Amends SEC Bylaw 14.5.5.6)

Clemson Finishes 2021 NFL Draft with Five Total Selections

Clemson wide receiver Cornell Powell(17) during during the first quarter of the NCAA football game between the Clemson Tigers and Pitt Panthers on November 28, 2020: at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, SC. (Photo by Carl Ackerman)

Powell’s selection on Day 3 rounds out Clemson’s 2021 draft class

 

CLEMSON, S.C. — A historic draft for Clemson that started with the first No. 1 pick in program history on Thursday concluded Saturday with the fifth-round selection of Cornell Powell by the Kansas City Chiefs with the No. 181 overall pick. Powell’s selection gave Clemson five total picks in the 2021 NFL Draft.

 

Powell became the latest in Clemson’s lineage of productive Tiger wideouts drafted into the NFL, becoming the 11th Clemson receiver selected in the last nine drafts. His selection coupled with the Packers’ third-round selection of Amari Rodgers gave Clemson multiple wide receivers in a single draft for the third time in the Dabo Swinney era, joining 2014 (Sammy Watkins and Martavis Bryant) and 2018 (Deon Cain and Ray-Ray McCloud).

 

Collectively, Clemson reached at least five selections for the third straight draft, one shy of the longest streak in school history (2014-17). Clemson is one of only eight schools with at least five picks in each of the last three drafts. The five picks also pushed Swinney’s career draft pick total to 69, the second-most by any college coach since the 2009 NFL Draft.

 

With the vast majority of Clemson’s 2020 defense returning this season, the 2021 NFL Draft was a historical anomaly for Clemson in terms of the distribution of offensive and defensive picks. With the selections of quarterback Trevor Lawrence, running back Travis Etienne, offensive lineman Jackson Carman, wide receiver Amari Rodgers and Powell, the 2021 NFL Draft marked the first time Clemson’s entire draft class came from the offensive side of the ball since tight end Bennie Cunningham, running back Don Testerman, wide receiver Craig Brantley and offensive tackle Gary Alexander comprised Clemson’s 1976 NFL Draft class.

 

As Clemson’s current NFL Draft picks head to the professional level, Clemson’s next wave of future NFL selections will open the 2021 season with one of the most-anticipated non-conference showdowns of the season when the Tigers face Georgia on Saturday, Sept. 4 in Charlotte. Clemson will return to Death Valley for its home opener a week later when it hosts South Carolina State at Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 11.

 

Draft notes and comments from Clemson coaches from Day 3 of the 2021 NFL Draft are included below.

 

CLEMSON NOTES

– Produced five selections, which marked the third straight draft in which at least five Clemson players have been selected, one shy of the longest streak in school history (four consecutive drafts from 2014-17).

– Stands with Alabama and Ohio State as one of the only three schools with five or more picks in at least seven of the eight most recent drafts.

– Is one of eight schools with at least five selections in each of the last three drafts, a list that also includes Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State and Penn State.

– Improved Dabo Swinney’s career draft pick total to 69 since the 2009 NFL Draft, trailing only Alabama’s Nick Saban in that span.

– Became only the 51st program ever to produce a No. 1 overall pick since inception of the draft in 1936.

– Became the seventh current ACC program to produce a No. 1 overall pick, joining Florida State, Miami (Fla.), NC State, Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech. However, Clemson became the third program ever to produce a No. 1 pick while a member of the ACC, as Miami, Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech’s No. 1 picks predated their tenure in the ACC.

– Has now produced a first-round pick in eight of the last nine drafts, dating to the 2013 NFL Draft. The only draft in that span in which Clemson did not have at least one first-round pick was 2018. Clemson, Alabama and Florida are the only programs to have produced a first-round pick in at least eight of the last nine drafts.

– Has now produced a Top 10 pick in three consecutive drafts for the first time in program history. Entering the 2021 NFL Draft, only Clemson, Alabama, LSU and Ohio State had produced a Top 10 selection in each of the previous two drafts.

– Has now produced multiple first-round picks in three consecutive drafts for the first time in program history. Clemson and Alabama are the only schools to produce multiple first-round picks in the 2019, 2020 and 2021 NFL Drafts.

– After producing multiple first-round picks on defense in each of the previous two drafts, Clemson produced multiple first-round picks from the offense for the third time in school history, joining the 1979 and 2017, both of which featured quarterback/receiver duos.

– Tied for the 11th-most draft picks of any school and tied for the second-most among permanent ACC members in the 2021 NFL Draft despite having draft entrants on only one side of the ball.

– With Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne both being selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first round, the duo became the QB/RB duo from a single school ever drafted by the same team in the first round of an NFL Draft in the Common Draft era.

– Clemson and Alabama (QB Mac Jones and RB Najee Harris) became the fifth and sixth programs since 2000 to produce a quarterback/running back duo in the first round of a single draft, joining LSU (QB Joe Burrow and RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire in 2020), Georgia (QB Matthew Stafford and RB Knowshon Moreno in 2009), USC (QB Matt Leinart and RB Reggie Bush in 2006) and Auburn (QB Jason Campbell and RBs Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams in 2005).

– Lawrence and Etienne became only the sixth pair of college teammates to be drafted by a single team in the first round in the Common Draft era, joining Georgia T Isaiah Wynn and RB Sony Michel (New England in 2018), Auburn CB Carlos Rogers and QB Jason Campbell (Washington in 2005), Miami DE Bill Hawkins and RB Cleveland Gary (Los Angeles Rams in 1989), Arkansas LB Billy Ray Smith and RB Gary Anderson (San Diego in 1983) and Michigan State RB Clint Jones and WR Gene Washington (Minnesota in 1967).

– Produced at least three Top 50 picks for the third consecutive draft, the longest such streak in school history. Prior to this 2019-21 stretch, Clemson’s last such draft was 1987 (ironically also a year in which a Clemson RB — Terrence Flagler — was selected at No. 25 overall).

– Produced four Top 100 picks for the third year in a row and for the fourth time in the Dabo Swinney era (2016, 2019, 2020 and 2021).

– Has produced four selections in the first three rounds in each of the last three drafts. Clemson has had at least three players selected through the first three rounds in five of the last six drafts.

– Has now had at least one player selected in the first round, the second round and the third round of each of the last two NFL Drafts. They represent the only two drafts in school history in which Clemson has had a player selected in each of the first three rounds.

– Had five offensive players drafted in a single draft for the first time since 1983, when six members of Clemson’s offense (RB Cliff Austin, RB Chuck McSwain, FB Jeff McCall, G Bob Mayberry, G Brian Butcher and WR Frank Magwood) were selected. Five offensive selections are a Clemson record for a seven-round draft, as Clemson’s six offensive selections in 1983 came in a 12-round format.

– Produced a draft class that featured only offensive players for the first time since the 1976 NFL Draft when all four selections Clemson came from the offense (TE Bennie Cunningham, RB Don Testerman, WR Craig Brantley and OT Gary Alexander).

– Had multiple wide receivers drafted for the third time in the Swinney era (2014 and 2018). Clemson has now produced 11 draft picks at wide receiver since the 2013 NFL Draft, the most in the country.

– Has now produced at least one receiver in eight of the last nine NFL Drafts, dating to DeAndre Hopkins’ selection in 2013.

– Had teammates selected by the same NFL team for the sixth time in the last seven drafts. The only draft since 2015 in which Clemson hasn’t had teammates selected by the same franchise was the 2018 NFL Draft.

– Produced the 19th NFL Draft to feature at least one team drafting a pair of Clemson teammates, including the 1946, 1951, 1955, 1959, 1960, 1968, 1970, 1972, 1979, 1983, 1991, 1998, 2003, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2020 and 2021 drafts. The Jaguars became the 18th NFL franchise to select a pair of Clemson teammates in a single draft, joining the Bears (1991), Bills (1960 AFL Draft), Broncos (2003), Browns (1968), Cardinals (1991), Chiefs (1979), Cowboys (1970), Dolphins (1998), Eagles (1955 and 1959), Falcons (2015), Giants (1960, 1983 and 1984, including Supplemental Draft of USFL Players), Packers (1946), Raiders (2019 and 2020), Rams (1998), Steelers (1951 and 1972), Texans (2017) and Vikings (2016).

– Extended its streak of consecutive drafts with at least one selection to 19 since 2003, representing the second-longest streak in school history behind a 24-year streak across the 1951-74 NFL Drafts.

 

POWELL NOTES

– Became the 69th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 14th fifth-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.

– Became the 12th wide receiver in Swinney’s head coaching tenure to be drafted into the NFL.

– Became the 16th Clemson wide receiver under Swinney’s guidance to be drafted including Swinney’s stint as wide receivers coach from 2003-08.

– Represented Clemson’s 11th draft pick at wide receiver since 2013, the most of any school.

– Gave Clemson multiple wide receivers in a single draft for the third time in the Swinney era, joining 2014 (Sammy Watkins and Martavis Bryant) and 2018 (Deon Cain and Ray-Ray McCloud).

– Became the first No. 181 overall pick in Clemson history.

– Selected in the same round (fifth) and same division (AFC West) as former Clemson teammate Hunter Renfrow, who was a fifth-round pick of the Raiders in 2019.

– Became the sixth Clemson player drafted by the Chiefs all-time, joining RB Jay Washington (1974), QB Steve Fuller (1979), WR Stan Rome (1979), T Barry Richardson (2008) and LB Dorian O’Daniel (2018).

 

COACHES’ COMMENTS

Head Coach Dabo Swinney on Cornell Powell:

“The Chiefs are getting a young man of commitment and perseverance, a young man that has finally put it all together and is just hungry to go continue what he finished his career with last year. There is a drive and hunger to him that I think is special. It is fun to see a guy that finally puts it all together, whether it be overcoming injuries, opportunity or the technical aspect of the game. He did that. It has been fun to watch him. He is physical. He has got a great body. He is a big, strong kid that can play multiple positions. Same thing as Amari Rodgers — he really handles himself well and really understands the nuances of playing receiver as far of the technical aspect of his stance, his starts, the releases, and break points and influence in his route running and so forth. They are getting a guy that has a confidence to go with the talent. I am excited about him because his upside is higher than the round where he was drafted. So I am excited for the Chiefs because I think he is the guy that is going to be able to help early. Same thing as Amari — he has a lot special teams’ value. He can return, he can cover kicks, he can play gunner. He is going to bring a lot to the table. And I think he has got an NFL-ready body right now. But his best football is still in front of him. The light has come on bright for him. There is a hunger, and again, there is a spirit of confidence to him that I think will separate him on this next step.”

 

Wide Receivers Coach Tyler Grisham on Cornell Powell:

“Cornell is a great prospect that I really think it just scratching the surface of his potential. He really came on his senior year here at Clemson and stepped up when we needed him most. The thing about Cornell is he’s a versatile player because he has good height, but his length makes him play longer and bigger than he really is, so he can go up and make the contested plays. He also can run good routes because he is a 6-foot-1 or so guy who can get in and out of his breaks really well and create separation. Because of his length, he can use his physicality and strength to create separation and to also hold up in the run game, block well and also contribute on special teams.”

Carman, Rodgers Selected on Day 2 of 2021 NFL Draft

October 17, 2020 Atlanta - Clemson's wide receiver Amari Rodgers (3) runs with the ball during the first half of an NCAA college football game at Georgia Tech's Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta on Saturday, October 17, 2020. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

CLEMSON, S.C. — Offensive lineman Jackson Carman (No. 46 overall to the Cincinnati Bengals) and wide receiver Amari Rodgers (No. 85 to the Green Bay Packers) were both selected on Day 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft on Friday evening. Including the selections of quarterback Trevor Lawrence and running back Travis Etienne in the first round on Thursday, Clemson now has four selections through the first three rounds of this year’s draft.

 

For the second straight draft, it was the Cincinnati Bengals that were the first on Day 2 to select a Clemson Tiger. A year ago, the Bengals opened the second round by selecting wide receiver Tee Higgins at No. 33 overall. This year, the Bengals selected Carman, a Cincinnati native, at No. 46 overall, making him the highest-selected Clemson offensive lineman since the Detroit Lions selected guard Dave Thompson with the No. 30 overall selection in the 1971 NFL Draft.

 

Rodgers continued the tradition of “Wide Receiver U” with his selection by the Packers in the third round. Rodgers became Clemson’s 10th draft pick at wide receiver since 2013 and extended Clemson’s school-record number of consecutive drafts with a wide receiver selected to six, currently the nation’s longest active streak.

 

This year’s draft marks the third straight year that Clemson has produced four selections over the first three rounds. Clemson has had at least three players selected through the first three rounds in five of the last six drafts.

 

The 2021 NFL Draft will resume at noon ET on Saturday with Rounds 4-7. Notes and comments from Clemson coaches following each selection are available on ClemsonTigers.com Draft Central.

 

Draft notes and comments from Clemson coaches through Day 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft are included below.

 

CLEMSON NOTES

– Produced at least three Top 50 picks for the third consecutive draft, the longest such streak in school history. Prior to this 2019-21 stretch, Clemson’s last such draft was 1987 (ironically also a year in which a Clemson RB — Terrence Flagler — was selected at No. 25 overall).

– Produced four Top 100 picks for the third year in a row and for the fourth time in the Dabo Swinney era (2016, 2019, 2020 and 2021).

– Has produced four selections in the first three rounds in each of the last three drafts. Clemson has had at least three players selected through the first three rounds in five of the last six drafts.

– Became only the 51st program ever to produce a No. 1 overall pick since inception of the draft in 1936.

– Became the seventh current ACC program to produce a No. 1 overall pick, joining Florida State, Miami (Fla.), NC State, Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech. However, Clemson became the third program ever to produce a No. 1 pick while a member of the ACC, as Miami, Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech’s No. 1 picks predated their tenure in the ACC.

– Has now produced a first-round pick in eight of the last nine drafts, dating to the 2013 NFL Draft. The only draft in that span in which Clemson did not have at least one first-round pick was 2018. Clemson, Alabama and Florida are the only programs to have produced a first-round pick in at least eight of the last nine drafts.

– Has now produced a Top 10 pick in three consecutive drafts for the first time in program history. Entering the 2021 NFL Draft, only Clemson, Alabama, LSU and Ohio State had produced a Top 10 selection in each of the previous two drafts.

– Has now produced multiple first-round picks in three consecutive drafts for the first time in program history. Clemson and Alabama are the only schools to produce multiple first-round picks in the 2019, 2020 and 2021 NFL Drafts.

– After producing multiple first-round picks on defense in each of the previous two drafts, Clemson produced multiple first-round picks from the offense for the third time in school history, joining the 1979 and 2017, both of which featured quarterback/receiver duos.

– Clemson and Alabama (QB Mac Jones and RB Najee Harris) became the fifth and sixth programs since 2000 to produce a quarterback/running back duo in the first round of a single draft, joining LSU (QB Joe Burrow and RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire in 2020), Georgia (QB Matthew Stafford and RB Knowshon Moreno in 2009), USC (QB Matt Leinart and RB Reggie Bush in 2006) and Auburn (QB Jason Campbell and RBs Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams in 2005).

– With Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne both being selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first round, the duo became the QB/RB duo from a single school ever drafted by the same team in the first round of an NFL Draft in the Common Draft era.

– Lawrence and Etienne became only the sixth pair of college teammates to be drafted by a single team in the first round in the Common Draft era, joining Georgia T Isaiah Wynn and RB Sony Michel (New England in 2018), Auburn CB Carlos Rogers and QB Jason Campbell (Washington in 2005), Miami DE Bill Hawkins and RB Cleveland Gary (Los Angeles Rams in 1989), Arkansas LB Billy Ray Smith and RB Gary Anderson (San Diego in 1983) and Michigan State RB Clint Jones and WR Gene Washington (Minnesota in 1967).

– Extended its streak of consecutive drafts with at least one selection to 19 since 2003, representing the second-longest streak in school history behind a 24-year streak across the 1951-74 NFL Drafts.

– Has now had at least one player selected in the first round, the second round and the third round of each of the last two NFL Drafts. They represent the only two drafts in school history in which Clemson has had a player selected in each of the first three rounds.

 

CARMAN NOTES

– Became the 67th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 10th second-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.

– Became Clemson’s highest-selected offensive lineman since the Detroit Lions selected G Dave Thompson with the No. 30 overall pick in the 1971 NFL Draft.

– Gave Clemson back-to-back drafts with at least one offensive lineman selected for the first time since 2007-08.

– Became the first No. 46 overall pick in school history.

– Marked the second straight season that the Bengals have used a second-round pick on a player from Clemson, joining their selection of wide receiver Tee Higgins with the No. 33 overall pick a year ago. The 2021 NFL Draft is actually the second straight draft that the Bengals have selected an LSU Tiger in the first round (Joe Burrow in 2020, Ja’Marr Chase in 2021) and a Clemson Tiger in the second round (Higgins in 2020, Carman in 2021).

– Marked the second straight year that Clemson has had an offensive player taken in the second round. Prior to Higgins’ selection in the second round last year, every Clemson second-round pick had come from the defensive side of the ball since the Seattle Seahawks selected WR Doug Thomas in 1991. Clemson’s previous 17 second-round picks prior to Higgins and Carman had been defensive players, including the previous eight who all played under Head Coach Dabo Swinney.

– Became the Bengals’ fifth all-time selection from Clemson, joining TE Jim Riggs (1987), DT Donald Broomfield (1999), DT Brandon Thompson (2012) and Higgins (2020).

– Was selected by his hometown Bengals, marking the second straight draft in which a Clemson player has been selected by his home state team (Atlanta CB A.J. Terrell in 2020). Carman will now play home games in Cincinnati fewer than 25 miles from his high school in Fairfield, Ohio.

 

RODGERS NOTES

– Became the 68th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the seventh third-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.

– Became the 11th wide receiver in Swinney’s head coaching tenure to be drafted into the NFL.

– Became the 15th Clemson wide receiver under Swinney’s guidance to be drafted including Swinney’s stint as wide receivers coach from 2003-08.

– Represented Clemson’s 10th draft pick at wide receiver since 2013. Clemson’s nine previous selections at wide receiver across the 2013-20 NFL Drafts were tied for the most in the country in that span.

– Extended Clemson’s school-record number of consecutive drafts with a wide receiver selected to six, currently the nation’s longest active streak.

– Gave Clemson at least one receiver selected in eight of the last nine NFL Drafts, dating to DeAndre Hopkins’ selection in 2013.

– Became the first No. 85 overall pick in school history.

– Became the 11th Clemson player selected by the Packers all-time and the first since DT Donnell Washington in the third round of the 2004 NFL Draft. Four of the Packers’ 11 all-time selections from Clemson have come in the third round, including Fred Cone (1951), Gary Barnes (1962), Washington (2004) and Rodgers (2021).

– Became the Packers’ highest-drafted wide receiver since selecting four-time Pro Bowler Davante Adams with the No. 53 overall pick in 2014.

 

COACHES’ COMMENTS

Head Coach Dabo Swinney on Jackson Carman:

“The Bengals are getting a first-round talent. Like Tee Higgins last year, Tee Higgins went in the second round, but he was a top-15 talent and I think you saw that in how he played. Tee Higgins was a ready-to-go guy right out of the gate with his best football still in front of him and he left early right after his junior year, and I would say the same exact thing about Jackson. We have had him here for two-and-a-half years and Jackson is a ‘day one’ guy. He is going to play day one; he is not a guy who is going to redshirt. He is ready to play and that is because you can’t find what he has. It is hard to find offensive linemen, first of all, but especially offensive linemen that are incredibly athletic, big, strong, and can play literally four positions — and more importantly has the knowledge to play four positions. He just gets it. He understands football. So wherever he went, his team was going to get a first-round talent. I think if he had been back, he would have been a top-15 pick. I think he is one of those guys that has a chance to play a long time, and if his body holds up, I think he’ll decide when football ends for him — he has got that type of upside to him. So I’m super excited about his future and excited for the team that gets him because I know how hard it is to find ready offensive linemen and that’s what you get with Jackson Carman. You get a guy that is ready to make you better the day he steps on the field.”

 

Offensive Line Coach Robbie Caldwell on Jackson Carman:

“They are getting a class young man. He’s very smart, very intelligent. He’s talented in football, of course, but he can do anything — sing, cook, play musical instruments — which tells you a little bit about his intelligence. He’s very athletic, a big guy who can run and bend. He can play guard or tackle, and I think they’re going a have great locker room presence on top of a great player.”

 

Head Coach Dabo Swinney on Amari Rodgers:

“The Packers are getting a true professional. He is the ultimate pro. This kid has handled himself like a pro since I met him, and I mean in every aspect of his life. He is incredibly committed to excellence in every area: academics, his relationships, how he deals with media, how he responds to adversity, you name it. He is the same guy every day. He has an incredible mind to him. He has an incredible mental toughness and grit, and then he is just highly skilled. He brings a ton of experience. He has played a ton of football. He has incredible special teams value. He can do a lot of things there. He played his first two years on the outside, he played his last two years in the slot. He is crafty. He is a technician at his position, and he is a guy that’s going to be ready day one since he can play multiple positions and is incredibly smart. Again, he is built like a running back, but he has the length of a 6-foot-3 wideout and plays long. He is a tough yards-after-the-catch guy and I think is one of those guys that, like I said, is a true pro and will be a leader from the moment he gets there.”

 

Wide Receivers Coach Tyler Grisham on Amari Rodgers:

“Amari Rodgers is the total package. He is what you want in a player and in a person. He’s a high-effort guy who is going to lead by example. As a player, he is going to do everything you ask and more. Very versatile — can play the slot, can play outside and you can hand the ball off to him because he has such great center of gravity, contact balance and strength. He also can also take it the distance. He has great speed, great hands. He is the ultimate competitor. I could go on and on about him, but he’s the total package.”

 

Tigers Make History in Round 1 of 2021 NFL Draft

Lawrence becomes Clemson’s first No. 1 pick; Lawrence and Etienne become first single-school QB/RB duo selected by one team in the first round in the Common Draft era

CLEMSON, S.C. — Clemson added another chapter to its NFL Draft history on Thursday evening, as the Jacksonville Jaguars selected quarterback Trevor Lawrence No. 1 overall and running back Travis Etienne No. 25 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft. Lawrence became the first No. 1 overall pick in Clemson Football history, and the selections made Lawrence and Etienne the first quarterback/running back duo selected from the same school by the same team in the first round the Common Draft era (since 1967).

The selections of Lawrence and Etienne gave Clemson multiple first-round picks for a program-record third consecutive year. Clemson and Alabama are the only programs to have produced multiple first-rounders in each of the last three drafts.

With Lawrence’s selection, Clemson became only the 51st program ever to produce a No. 1 pick since the inception of the NFL Draft in 1936 and only the third ever to do so while members of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Lawrence now moves to the professional level after a decorated college career in which he became the winningest quarterback in Clemson history (34-2 as a starter) while also earning his degree in only three years.

“The Jaguars are getting a winner, capital W-I-N-N-E-R, WINNER,” Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney said. “They’re getting a great human being, great leader and a highly skilled football player.”

Lawrence’s selection at No. 1 surpassed Banks McFadden (No. 4 in 1939), Gaines Adams (No. 4 in 2007), Sammy Watkins (No 4 in 2014) and Clelin Ferrell (No. 4 in 2019) to make him the highest NFL Draft selection from Clemson all-time. He became the third No. 1 overall pick across all sports in Clemson Athletics history, joining baseball’s Kris Benson (1996) and men’s soccer’s Robbie Robinson (2020). 

Lawrence helped guide Clemson to the program’s third national title in 2018, starting the final 11 games of major college football’s first 15-0 campaign since 1897. This past season, he finished second in Heisman Trophy voting and won the Bobby Bowden Trophy and ACC Player of the Year amid a plethora of conference and national awards.

Etienne completed one of the most prolific careers in Clemson, ACC and college football history from 2017-20, becoming a consensus All-American in 2020 after winning back-to-back ACC Player of the Year honors in 2018 and 2019. He departed for the NFL as the FBS record-holder for most career games scoring a touchdown (46 of his 55 career games) as well as the ACC career record-holder for rushing yards (4,952), total touchdowns (78), rushing touchdowns (70) and points scored (468).

“He is a first-, second- and third-down guy, and he can change the game any play, any quarter,” Swinney said. “Any time he touches the ball, he is one of those guys that you’ve got to hold your breath.”

Etienne became Clemson’s third first-round running back in the Common Draft era, joining Terrence Flagler (No. 25 in 1987) and current Clemson running backs coach C.J. Spiller (No. 9 in 2010). He joined Spiller, Virginia Tech’s David Wilson (No. 32 in 2012), Virginia’s Thomas Jones (No. 7 in 2000) and Florida State’s Warrick Dunn (No. 12 in 1997) as the fifth ACC running back selected in the first round in the last 25 years.

The 2021 NFL Draft will resume at 7 p.m. ET on Friday with Rounds 2-3. Notes and comments from Clemson coaches following each selection are available on ClemsonTigers.com Draft Central.

Draft notes and comments from Clemson coaches from Day 1 of the 2021 NFL Draft are included below.

CLEMSON NOTES

– Became only the 51st program ever to produce a No. 1 overall pick since inception of the draft in 1936.

– Became the seventh current ACC program to produce a No. 1 overall pick, joining Florida State, Miami (Fla.), NC State, Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech. However, Clemson became the third program ever to produce a No. 1 pick while a member of the ACC, as Miami, Syracuse, Virginia and Virginia Tech’s No. 1 picks predated their tenure in the ACC.

– Has now produced a first-round pick in eight of the last nine drafts, dating to the 2013 NFL Draft. The only draft in that span in which Clemson did not have at least one first-round pick was 2018. Clemson, Alabama and Florida are the only programs to have produced a first-round pick in at least eight of the last nine drafts.

– Has now produced a Top 10 pick in three consecutive drafts for the first time in program history. Entering the 2021 NFL Draft, only Clemson, Alabama, LSU and Ohio State had produced a Top 10 selection in each of the previous two drafts.

– Has now produced multiple first-round picks in three consecutive drafts for the first time in program history. Clemson and Alabama are the only schools to produce multiple first-round picks in the 2019, 2020 and 2021 NFL Drafts.

– After producing multiple first-round picks on defense in each of the previous two drafts, Clemson produced multiple first-round picks from the offense for the third time in school history, joining the 1979 and 2017, both of which featured quarterback/receiver duos.

– Clemson and Alabama (QB Mac Jones and RB Najee Harris) became the fifth and sixth programs since 2000 to produce a quarterback/running back duo in the first round of a single draft, joining LSU (QB Joe Burrow and RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire in 2020), Georgia (QB Matthew Stafford and RB Knowshon Moreno in 2009), USC (QB Matt Leinart and RB Reggie Bush in 2006) and Auburn (QB Jason Campbell and RBs Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams in 2005). 

– With Trevor Lawrence and Travis Etienne both being selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first round, the duo became the QB/RB duo from a single school ever drafted by the same team in the first round of an NFL Draft in the Common Draft era. 

– Lawrence and Etienne became only the sixth pair of college teammates to be drafted by a single team in the first round in the Common Draft era, joining Georgia T Isaiah Wynn and RB Sony Michel (New England in 2018), Auburn CB Carlos Rogers and QB Jason Campbell (Washington in 2005), Miami DE Bill Hawkins and RB Cleveland Gary (Los Angeles Rams in 1989), Arkansas LB Billy Ray Smith and RB Gary Anderson (San Diego in 1983) and Michigan State RB Clint Jones and WR Gene Washington (Minnesota in 1967).

– Extended its streak of consecutive drafts with at least one selection to 19 since 2003, representing the second-longest streak in school history behind a 24-year streak across the 1951-74 NFL Drafts.

LAWRENCE NOTES

– Became the 65th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 14th first-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.

– Represents Clemson’s 35th first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time, dating back to Banks McFadden’s selection by the NFL’s Brooklyn Dodgers with the fourth overall pick in the 1940 NFL Draft.

– Surpassed Banks McFadden (No. 4 in 1939), Gaines Adams (No. 4 in 2007), Sammy Watkins (No 4 in 2014) and Clelin Ferrell (No. 4 in 2019) as highest NFL Draft selection from Clemson all-time.

– Became the third No. 1 overall pick in Clemson Athletics history, joining baseball’s Kris Benson (1996) and men’s soccer’s Robbie Robinson (2020). 

– Became the sixth top-five pick in Clemson Football history and the 14th top-five pick in Clemson Athletics history. Including top-five selections Philip Mayaka and Kimarni Smith in the MLS SuperDraft earlier this year, 2021 now marks the fourth year in school history in which Clemson has had multiple top-five picks across all sports, joining 1996 (baseball’s Kris Benson and Billy Koch), 2007 (football’s Gaines Adams and baseball’s Daniel Moskos) and 2019 (football’s Clelin Ferrell and women’s soccer’s Sam Staab). This year marks Clemson Athletics’ first year with three top-five picks across all sports.

– Joined Florida State’s Jameis Winston (2015), NC State’s Mario Williams (2006), Virginia Tech’s Michael Vick (1999) and Bruce Smith (1985), Miami’s Russell Maryland (1991) and Vinny Testaverde (1987), Syracuse’s Ernie Davis (1962) and Virginia’s Bill Dudley (1942) as the only No. 1 overall picks from current ACC programs. Of those previous selections, only Winston and Williams competed as members of the ACC.

– Became the second Clemson player drafted by the Jaguars since the franchise’s debut in 1995. He joins defensive end Andre Branch, whom the Jaguars selected in the second round (No. 38 overall) in 2012. 

– Became Clemson’s 13th Top 10 pick all-time and, including the No. 4 overall pick of Clelin Ferrell in 2019 and the No. 8 overall pick of Isaiah Simmons in 2020, gave Clemson three consecutive drafts with a Top 10 selection for the first time in Clemson history. Prior to the current run, Clemson had previously twice had Top 10 picks in back-to-back drafts, including 1982-83 with Jeff Bryant and Terry Kinard and 2014-15 with Sammy Watkins and Vic Beasley.

– Joined Steve Fuller (1979), Charlie Whitehurst (2006), Tajh Boyd (2013) and Deshaun Watson (2017) as the fifth Clemson quarterback drafted in the Common Draft era. Lawrence (34 wins), Watson (32), Boyd (32) and Whitehurst (25) account for four of the five winningest starting quarterbacks in Clemson history. Lawrence joined Watson and Fuller as Clemson’s third first-round quarterback in the Common Draft era.

– Became the first Clemson player to be the first player selected on either side of the ball in a draft since 2007, when Gaines Adams was the first defensive player selected when he was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at No. 4 overall. 

– Snapped a three-draft streak in which a defensive player was the first Clemson player selected (LB Dorian O’Daniel in 2018, DE Clelin Ferrell in 2019, LB Isaiah Simmons in 2020). Prior to Lawrence, the last offensive player to be the first Clemson player selected in a draft was wide receiver Mike Williams (No. 7 overall in 2017).

 – Gave the NFL have back-to-back No. 1 overall picks with a national championship to their credit for the first time since the 1991 NFL Draft (Miami DT Russell Maryland) and 1992 NFL Draft (Washington DE Steve Emtman). Lawrence won a national championship during the 2018 season, and last year’s No. 1 overall pick, Joe Burrow, won a national championship during the 2019 season.

ETIENNE NOTES

– Became the 66th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 15th first-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.

– Became Clemson’s third first-round running back in the Common Draft era (since 1967), joining Terrence Flagler (No. 25 in 1987) and current Clemson running backs coach C.J. Spiller (No. 9 in 2010).

– Tied Flagler as the second-highest-drafted running back from Clemson in the Common Draft era. 

– Joined Flagler (1987) and CB Antwan Edwards (1999) as the third No. 25 overall pick in Clemson history.

– Joined Spiller, Virginia Tech’s David Wilson (No. 32 in 2012), Virginia’s Thomas Jones (No. 7 in 2000) and Florida State’s Warrick Dunn (No. 12 in 1997) as the fifth ACC running back selected in the first round in the last 25 years.

– Gave Clemson multiple first-round picks by a single team in one draft for the first time in school history.

– Became the third Clemson player ever drafted by the Jaguars, joining DE Andre Branch (2012) and Lawrence (2021).

COACHES’ COMMENTS

Head Coach Dabo Swinney on Trevor Lawrence:

“The Jaguars are getting a winner, capital W-I-N-N-E-R, WINNER. They’re getting a great human being, great leader and a highly skilled football player. He is a mentally and physically tough football player. He’s fast, he’s big, he’s strong, and he is an incredibly equipped and skilled quarterback. He just really has great command of the position, an understanding of football, aptitude for football, understanding of defense. Really, there is not anything you could ever want in a quarterback that he doesn’t possess. But the No. 1 thing that they’re getting is a great man of faith, great character and the ultimate winner. If you go all the way back to middle school, he has not lost many games. And I think he is going to be a guy that impacts the community, will impact the coaching staff, will impact free agency, and really do it in an incredibly humble way. Great spirit, a guy that has got his feet on the ground and really ‘gets it’ in every aspect of what his responsibility and what his role will be, not only in the organization but within the community and the NFL.”

Passing Game Coordinator/Quarterbacks Coach Brandon Streeter on Trevor Lawrence:

“I can’t say enough good things about Trevor Lawrence and what he’s about not only on the field but especially off the field. Obviously, his talent that we all see is ridiculous, but in all areas he has performed so well. I’m just excited about his opportunity to move on to the next level. I think his locker room presence, him being an unbelievable teammate and just his character in general are off the charts. His perspective on life is exactly what you want. I’m so proud of him and excited for this opportunity in his life.”

Head Coach Dabo Swinney on Travis Etienne:

“Travis is one of the most explosive, dynamic players that I have ever seen. He is a bigger C.J. Spiller, which is the best way I can describe him based on the guys that I have had experience with. C.J. was probably 199-200 lbs. Travis is just bigger, but he has that same explosiveness. He is dynamic, as far as what he can do in the passing game. He can also return. He has an incredibly humble spirit to him. He is one of the best teammates you can ever have, and he is blue collar. He is just a tough, blue-collar football player. He is an every-down player. He is a first-, second- and third-down guy, and he can change the game any play, any quarter. Any time he touches the ball, he is one of those guys that you’ve got to hold your breath, and I can’t wait to see him at the next level and watch him continue to develop as a complete player.”

 

Running Backs Coach C.J. Spiller on Travis Etienne:

“They’re getting a tremendous player and a guy that’s going to come in and work hard and he’s also going to be great in the community. He’s a guy that’s going to love playing football, love his teammates, put his team first and do whatever it takes to win. They’re getting a tremendous young man that’s going to be very successful. He’s somebody that comes from a winning program, so he understands what it takes to win at a high level. He’s going to come in and compete each and every day, so he’s going to be a great addition to their team.”

Former College Football Coaches to Compete in the 14th Annual Peach Bowl Challenge

Current and former coaches to compete for $320,000 in scholarship and charity.

  

Greensboro, Ga. (April 27, 2021) – A field of 19 current and former college football coaches is set to compete in the 14th annual Peach Bowl Challenge charity golf tournament May 3-4 at Reynolds Lake Oconee outside Atlanta. The coaches will be competing for a share of the $320,000 scholarship and charity purse.

 

This year’s field includes an impressive roster of college football greats that features four former Dodd Trophy winners, and a collective group of coaches who have won three national championships, 30 FBS conference championships and boast 2,039 career wins.

 

The nation’s premier collegiate coach golf event will feature coaches competing in teams over two days of competition. Proceeds from the event benefit charitable foundations selected by the coaches. Since its creation in 2007, the event has contributed a total of $8.4 million in scholarship and charity, helping make the Peach Bowl college football’s most charitable bowl organization.

 

“Many of these current and retired coaches have participated in our Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and Chick-fil-A Kickoff Games. This is our chance to give back to them for what they have done to help us grow and succeed – helping us meet our mission to be the country’s most charitable bowl organization,” Peach Bowl, Inc. CEO and President Gary Stokan said. “We can’t wait to see who comes out on top, but the real winners will be the charities these great coaches are playing for.”

 

The two-day tournament will be played in Ryder Cup format with Stableford scoring and will include 18-hole Chapman Scotch on Monday, followed by an 18-hole Two Man Scramble on Tuesday. This year’s event will also feature a Skills Challenge that includes bunker shot and chipping competitions.

The current field of competitors for this year’s Peach Bowl Challenge is projected to include:

 

Current Coaches

 

COACH SCHOOL CHARITY
Shane Beamer South Carolina Herma’s Readers
Manny Diaz Miami Overtown Youth Center
Dave Doeren NC State 321 Coffee
Randy Edsall UConn Edsall Family Foundation Philanthropy Fund
Gus Malzahn UCF Angel Armies
Jeff Monken Army Mission 22
Dan Mullen Florida Mullen Family “36” Foundation
Kirby Smart Georgia The Kirby Smart Family Foundation
Dabo Swinney Clemson Dabo’s All In Team Foundation

 

 

Former Coaches (Legends)

 

COACHES FORMER FBS SCHOOL(S) CHARITY /FOUNDATION
Frank Beamer Virginia Tech Herma’s Readers
Mike Cavan SMU Cornerstone Church Athens
Chan Gailey Georgia Tech Fellowship of Christian Athletes
Jim Grobe Ohio, Wake Forest, Baylor Fisher DeBerry Foundation
Bobby Johnson Vanderbilt Sea Island Habitat for Humanity
Paul Johnson Navy, Georgia Tech Paul and Susan Johnson Family Foundation
Rick Neuheisel Colorado, Washington, UCLA Wedgewood Charity
Houston Nutt Boise State, Arkansas, Ole Miss Chickasaw Foundation
Tom O’Brien Boston College, NC State Marine Toys for Tots
Steve Spurrier Duke, Florida, South Carolina HBC Foundation

 

 

@CFAPeachBowl

 

 

About Peach Bowl, Inc.

Peach Bowl, Inc. operates the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, one of the New Year’s Six Bowls selected to host the College Football Playoff. The Bowl has earned a reputation as one of the most competitive bowls in the country, with 53 percent of its games being decided by a touchdown or less. Peach Bowl, Inc. has disbursed $292.5 million in total team payouts over its 53-year history and have drawn an all-time ESPN viewership of 280.4 million for both the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and Chick-fil-A Kickoff Games. Peach Bowl, Inc. also leads all other bowl game organizations in charitable and scholarship contributions, having donated or committed $57.6 million to organizations in need since 2002. Peach Bowl, Inc. created and manages the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game, the Peach Bowl Challenge charity golf tournament, manages The Dodd Trophy national coach of the year award and led the relocation and financial foundation of the College Football Hall of Fame to Atlanta. For more information, visit Chick-fil-APeachBowl.com or follow us on Twitter at @CFAPeachBowl and find us on Facebook at Facebook.com/CFAPeachBowl.

White Team Scores 14 Unanswered Points to Earn 14-13 Comeback Win

CLEMSON, S.C. — Clemson conducted its annual Orange vs. White Spring Game on Saturday, with the White team scoring 14 unanswered second-half points to overcome a 13-0 halftime deficit for a 14-13 victory. Wide Receivers Coach Tyler Grisham earned the victory as acting head coach of the White team, defeating the Orange squad led by Defensive Ends Coach Lemanski Hall.

 

The contest provided the public its first look at Clemson’s 2021 squad, which completed its 15-session spring practice schedule as the Tigers prepare to seek a seventh consecutive ACC Championship this year. Seven more signees from Clemson’s 2021 recruiting class will arrive to join the team this summer in advance of fall camp in August.

 

The Orange squad opened the scoring on the game’s opening drive, as quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei engineered an eight-play, 73-yard drive that culminated in a 14-yard touchdown pass to midyear enrollee Beaux Collins, Uiagalelei’s former high school teammate at St. John Bosco in California.

 

The Orange team added to its lead in the final minute of the first half when placekicker B.T. Potter converted on a 54-yard field goal. The kick exceeded his official career long of 52 yards and gave the Orange squad a 10-0 lead at the break.

 

Potter added another field goal early in the third quarter to push the score to 13-0. The White team responded with its first points of the day early in the fourth quarter when quarterback Taisun Phommachanh connected with wide receiver Ajou Ajou on a 16-yard scoring pass.

 

The White team took its first lead with 1:58 remaining in the game, as running back Phil Mafah’s four-yard touchdown run capped an 11-play, 70-yard game-winning drive. The White team defense forced a turnover on downs on the ensuing drive to seal the victory.

 

Collectively, the two defenses combined to produce three takeaways on the day. Cornerback Sheridan Jones, who had a pick-six in his Spring Game debut two years ago, recorded the game’s first takeaway, recovering a fumbled lateral. Safety R.J. Mickens (Orange) and linebacker Sergio Allen (White) each added an interception for their respective teams.

 

The units also combined for 11 sacks, including six by the White team and five by the Orange team. Safety Tyler Venables led the White squad with 3.5 sacks, while defensive tackle Ruke Orhorhoro paced the Orange squad with two sacks.

 

Clemson will open the 2021 season with one of the most-anticipated non-conference showdowns of the season when it faces Georgia on Saturday, Sept. 4 in Charlotte. Clemson will return to Death Valley for its home opener a week later when it hosts South Carolina State at Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 11.

 

Season ticket requests for the upcoming season are now open, as fans are encouraged to come back home to Clemson for the 2021 campaign. Fans can request tickets at ClemsonTigers.com/FootballTickets and learn more about the upcoming 2021 season at ClemsonTigers.com/BackHome2021.

 

Prior to the contest, Clemson honored its team award-winners from the 2020 season. A full list of those award-winners is included below. Departed seniors from Clemson’s 2020 squad in attendance also received their 2020 ACC Championship rings at that time.

 

Danny Lee Ford Scholarship Awards: Max May, David Cote, Elijah Turner

Brandon Streeter Award (2020 award for 2019 season): Amari Rodgers

Bank of America — Hamilton Offensive MVP Award: Travis Etienne, Trevor Lawrence, Cornell Powell, Amari Rodgers

Morrow-Wiley Defensive MVP Award: Nolan Turner, James Skalski, Baylon Spector

Joe Francis Football Leadership Award: Trevor Lawrence, James Skalski, Nolan Turner

Renwick-Flanders Most Improved Football Players Award: Lannden Zanders, Jake Venables, Justin Mascoll, Baylon Spector, Andrew Booth Jr., Jordan McFadden, Chez Mellusi, Cornell Powell, Will Putnam, Jack Maddox

Coffman Cup, presented by the Nieri Family Student-Athlete Enrichment Center: Offense

 

ACC Network to Exclusively Carry Nine ACC Spring Football Games

Clemson players run down the hill before their game against Syracuse, Oct 24, 2020; Clemson, South Carolina, USA; at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

ACC Network (ACCN), the 24/7 national platform dedicated to ACC sports, is the exclusive home to ACC football’s slate of spring games beginning Saturday, March 27.

 

ACCN’s spring football coverage begins with Duke’s Spring Showcase on March 27 at 10 a.m., live from Wallace Wade Stadium in Durham, N.C. Reigning ACC Champion Clemson’s spring game follows the next weekend on April 3 at 1 p.m., while NC State and Florida State host their spring games at 1 and 5 p.m., respectively, on Saturday, April 10.

 

Saturday, April 17 features a doubleheader starting with Miami’s spring game at 11 a.m., followed by Pitt’s Blue-Gold Spring Game at 1 p.m. Georgia Tech is back under the lights at Bobby Dowd Stadium in Midtown Atlanta for its game on Friday, April 23 at 6 p.m., while Boston College and North Carolina anchor an action packed five weeks of spring football on Saturday, April 24.

 

Announce teams and additional spring game details will be announced in the coming weeks. All spring football games will also be available on the ESPN App to authenticated pay TV subscribers.

 

NFL Pro Days on ACCN

As previously announced, ACCN will have expansive NFL Pro Day coverage across the network and its digital platform ACC Network Extra (ACCNX). Next up on ACCN is Miami Pro Day on Monday, March 29 at 1 p.m. The two-hour event will be hosted by Jordan Cornette from ESPN’s Bristol, Conn. studio and joined by his teammates from The Huddle Eric Mac Lain, EJ Manuel and Mark Richt. ESPN NFL Draft analyst and Senior Bowl Executive Director Jim Nagy, NFL front office insider Mike Tannenbaum and ACCN football analyst Mark Herzlich will provide insight throughout the Pro Day coverage.

 

Notable participants include: kicker Jose Borregales, tight end Brevin Jordan, defensive end Greg Rousseau and defensive linemen Jaelen Phillips,  Quincy Roche and Chigozie Nnoruka.

 

ACC Spring Football Games on ACCN

 

Date Time (ET) Event Network
Sat, Mar 27 10 a.m. Duke Spring Showcase ACCN
Sat, Apr 3 1 p.m. Clemson ACCN
Sat, Apr 10 1 p.m. NC State Spring Game ACCN
  5 p.m. Florida State: Garnet & Gold Spring Game ACCN
Sat, Apr 17 11 a.m. Miami Spring Game ACCN
  1 p.m. Pitt: Blue-Gold Spring Game ACCN
Fri, Apr 23 6 p.m. Georgia Tech ACCN
Sat, Apr 24 TBA Boston College: Jay McGillis Memorial Spring Game ACCN
  3 p.m. North Carolina ACCN

 

 

About ACC Network

Owned and operated by ESPN in partnership with the Atlantic Coast ConferenceACC Network (ACCN) and its digital platform ACCNX is a 24/7 national network dedicated to ACC sports that launched on August 22, 2019. ACCN features regular-season and tournament games from across the conference’s 27 sponsored sports plus a complement of news and information shows and original programming. ESPN has been televising ACC content since 1979 and has exclusive rights to every conference-controlled game across all sports and championships.

 

Carriage agreements are in place with the following video providers: AT&T TV, AT&T TV NOW, Cox, DIRECTV, DISH Network, fuboTV, Google Fiber, Hulu Live TV, Optimum, Sling TV, Spectrum TV, Suddenlink, TVision, Verizon Fios, YouTube TV, members of the NCTC, NRTC and Vivicast, among others. All ACCN games will also be available on the ESPN app to authenticated subscribers. Fans interested in learning more about ACCN can visit www.GetACCN.com.

 

Clemson Football Spring Game Set for 1 p.m. on April 3

CLEMSON, S.C. – Clemson Athletics is set to host the 2021 Football Spring Game inside Memorial Stadium on Sat., April 3 at 1 p.m. Given present CDC guidance, which still recommends masks and social distancing, capacity for the game is set at 19,000, the same as it was in the fall of 2020.

 

IPTAY members will have the opportunity to request free general admission mobile tickets to the game from March 17-22. The Ticket Office will notify those IPTAY members who receive tickets by March 24. Student tickets will be available as well with details to come at a later date. Like the fall, the band and spirit squads will populate the Hill.

 

Any available tickets after the request period will be made available to the general public on ClemsonTigers.com beginning on March 25 at a cost of $10.

 

PARKING

  • Lots open three hours prior to kickoff (10 a.m.).

  • Clemson University and Clemson Athletics encourage downtown commerce. Please feel free to leave your car at your football parking spot and enjoy the afternoon in downtown Clemson.

  • Tailgating is discouraged. No tents, large groups, or trailers will be allowed.

  • ADA Parking is available with a state-issued permit at lots C-7 (North Stadium Lot) and C-9 (Centennial Blvd. Lot).

 

STADIUM ENTRY

  • All mobile tickets for 2021. Fans should download tickets to their mobile devices prior to arriving on campus.

  • There is no stadium re-entry (pass-outs).

  • Face coverings required at entrance gates and inside Memorial Stadium.

  • Clear bag policy is still in effect. Keep phone and keys in pockets for metal detectors.

  • Stadium event staff will wear face coverings and gloves (where necessary).

  • All surfaces and equipment will be wiped down and disinfected throughout the day.

  • Proper line spacing and queuing will be utilized.

 

IN THE STADIUM

  • Unless eating or drinking, patrons must always keep face coverings on.

  • Seating locations are spaced out in the seating bowl to allow six feet of social distance around each seating pod. When moving up and down aisles or amongst the seats, please be respectful of others.

  • Fans should be considerate of others and should be aware of their surroundings and the safety of others.

  • Available stadium seating locations marked using chairbacks. Please only sit in the seats that have been authorized to be occupied.

 

POSTGAME

  • To keep all student-athletes, coaches, and staff safe and healthy, “Gathering at the Paw” will not take place.

  • Contra-flow traffic patterns will not be in effect pregame or postgame, which means two-way traffic will be in effect on all roads. Please follow the instructions from law enforcement and be safe and patient.

All-American Bowl announces 3 new additions to Selection Committee – Snoop Dogg, Brent Williams, and Rick Mantz

The All-American Bowl today announced three new additions to the Selection Committee – Snoop Dogg, Brent Williams, and Rick Mantz.

 

The All-American Bowl Selection Committee works to select and recruit the top senior football players in the nation to participate in the All-American Bowl, the nation’s top high school all-star game. The Selection Committee is comprised of 247Sports, adidas, All-American Bowl and NBC Sports staff, along with Snoop Dogg, Williams and Mantz.

 

Following are the new additions to the All-American Bowl Selection Committee:

Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr., known professionally as Snoop Dogg, is a national media personality and has successfully operated the Snoop Youth Football League (SYFL) in Southern California since 2005. The SYFL has produced several All-Americans over the years, including De’Anthony Thomas, Jack Jones and Jaylin Smith.   Snoop will bring his passion for football and upbeat personality to the committee.

Brent Williams is the President of NextGen Camps, which he founded in 2014.  NextGen Camps discover and provide exposure for the country’s best high school underclassmen and middle school football players. Over the past seven years, more than 7,000 Division I scholarships have been offered to NextGen Alumni.  Williams, a University of Toledo alum, spent 11 years in the NFL as a defensive lineman with the New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks and New York Jets.

Rick Mantz is an inductee of the New Jersey Coaches Association Hall of Fame after comprising a career record of 121-60 during his different tenures as a head coach. Previously, he Mantz has served as the Director of High School Football for Rutgers University. Mantz brings over 30 years of coaching and scouting experience to the All-American Bowl.