Duke vs Clemson Game Notes
Clemson Successful on Homecoming
Saturday will be Homecoming at Clemson, a celebration that has included a
Clemson victory nearly 75 percent of the time since its first celebration in
1922. Clemson has an overall record of 59-19-3 for its previous 81 Homecoming
games, a .747 winning percentage. That includes a 29-3-2 record on Homecoming
games since the 1971 season.
The first homecoming game at Clemson was in 1922, a 21-0 loss to Centre.
Clemson was actually 0-4-1 through its first five homecoming games, so it is
surprising that the tradition continued. Clemson defeated Auburn in 1927 by a
3-0 score for its first homecoming victory.
There is no record of a homecoming game in 1930 or 1938, but the event has
been held in conjunction with a football game every year since 1939, even
through the war years.
Clemson has just three losses on Homecoming since 1971, a 1989 defeat to Georgia
Tech, 1997 to Virginia and 2001 to North Carolina. Tommy Bowden is 5-1 in his
previous six Homecoming games, including three wins in a row. Clemson defeated a
24th ranked Virginia team on Homecoming by a 30-27 score in overtime in 2003.
Clemson downed Utah State 35-6 last year. Four of Tommy Bowden's five Homecoming
wins have been against ACC foes.
This will be the first time Duke has been Clemson's
Homecoming opponent since 1992, a 21-6 Tiger victory. Overall, Clemson is 7-0-1
against the Blue Devils on Homecoming. Tommy Bowden was on the Duke sidelines
for two of those Clemson wins, a 54-21 victory in 1984 and a 35-3 Clemson win in
1986. The tie took place in 1976 when Duke kicker Vince Fusco booted a 57-yard
field goal on the last play of the game to tie the contest, 18-18. The kick
actually hit the crossbar and bounced over. It was the sixth field goal of the
game for Fusco, an ACC record that was tied earlier this year by Clemson's Jad
Dean when he booted six against Texas A&M.
Clemson vs. Duke Series
Clemson holds a 32-16-1 lead in the series with Duke, including a 17-4-1 lead in
games played in Death Valley. But, the Tigers have just a 13-12 lead in games at
Duke. That includes last year's 16-13 Duke victory that was won on the last play
of the game on a 53-yard field goal by Matt Brooks.
Duke has not won at Clemson since a 34-17 victory over a Danny Ford's second
Clemson team in 1980. A freshman quarterback named Ben Bennett led the Duke
offense and Dennis Tabron had three interceptions for 128 return yards to lead
the Blue Devil defense in that game. Clemson has won 12 in a row over the Blue
Devils in Death Valley, including the last meeting, a 40-7 Clemson victory in
2003. Clemson's average victory margin in those 12 consecutive wins over Duke at
home is 25.6 points per game. The only game that has been within double digits
was a 29-20 Clemson victory in 1997 that was the first overtime game in ACC
Clemson and Duke have split the last eight meetings at Duke, and three of the
four wins have been by seven points or less. Clemson's only resounding win at
Duke since 1981 was a 52-22 win in 2000. Seven of the last eight meetings
between Clemson and Duke in Durham have been decided by seven points or less.
Overall, Clemson has won 12 of the last 15 in the series dating to a 21-17 loss
at Duke in 1989, Danny Ford's last year as Clemson head coach. Steve Spurrier
was the coach of the Blue Devils for that game. Clemson entered that 1989 game
with a 4-0 record, a #7 AP ranking and had recently won at Florida State.
Some of Clemson's single game records have been set against the Blue Devils.
In 1995, Raymond Priester rushed for a record 263 yards to lead the Tiger
offense in a 34-17 Tiger victory. On the other side of the line of scrimmage
that day, Brian Dawkins had three interceptions in the first quarter to set a
school record for a quarter and a half, and tie the record for a single game.
In 2002, Charlie Whitehurst made his first career start against the Blue
Devils and completed 34 of 52 passes for 420 yards and four touchdowns. The 420
passing yards set a record that still remains today. The same goes for the 34
completions, and the four touchdown passes tied the Clemson single game record.
The top two instances of the quickest back-to-back touchdowns in Clemson
history took place against Duke. In 2003, Derrick Hamilton caught scoring passes
from Whitehurst just 14 seconds apart, a record for the quickest back to back
touchdowns in Clemson history. In 1999 Brian Wofford scored on an 18-yard TD
pass from Brandon Streeter, then Terry Jolly ran an interception back from 20
yards out, scores that took place just 21 seconds apart, the second fastest
back-to-back touchdown scores in Clemson history.
From a Duke standpoint, just three players in Clemson football history have
caught 13 passes in a single game against the Tigers and all three are Duke
players. Henley Carter had 13 catches against Clemson in 1968, Wes Chesson had
13 against the Tigers in 1970 and Mark Militello turned the trick in 1983. Tommy
Bowden was the Duke quarterbacks coach for that performance. Those all tie for
the second most catches in a game against Clemson. Kelly Campbell had a record
14 against the Tigers in 2000.
There have been many noteworthy performances in the Clemson vs. Duke series:
· 1957: In just the fourth meeting between the two teams, an 11th ranked Duke
team defeats a 14th ranked Clemson team 7-6 in Durham. It is the fourth straight
win to open the series for the Blue Devils.
· 1965: Clemson kicks a field goal to defeat Duke, 3-2, the only 3-2 score in
Clemson football history, and tying a school record for the fewest points in a
· 1971: Clemson upsets a 14th ranked Duke tam in Norfolk, VA by a 3-0 score.
Eddie Seigler booted a 39-yard field goal for the Tigers.
· 1976: Vince Fusco sets and ACC record with six field goals, including one from
57 yards on the last play of the game that hit the goal post and bounced over in
an 18-18 Homecoming tie at Death Valley.
· 1980: Duke upsets a 4-1 Clemson team in Death Valley 34-17 behind Dennis
Tabron's three interceptions and Clemson opponent record 128 return yards. That
was Duke's last win in Death Valley.
· 1981:Clemson gained over 300 yards rushing and 200 yards passing in a dominant
38-10 victory on the way to the National Championship.
· 1983:Both teams gained over 500 yards total offense, but the Tigers held on
with a 38-31 victory. Tommy Bowden was Duke's quarterback coach in this game.
· 1988: Clemson defeats a 22nd ranked and 5-0 Duke team by a 49-17 margin. It is
the last time both teams were ranked in the top 25 entering the game.
· 1989: Duke upset a 4-0 and seventh ranked Clemson team 21-17 in Durham.
Clemson had upset Florida State in Tallahassee earlier in the season. Duke went
on to win seven straight games and the ACC Championship.
· 1995: Raymond Priester set Clemson single game rushing record with263 yards in
34-17 victory. Brian Dawkins had three interceptions in one quarter for the
· 1997: Clemson wins first overtime game in ACC history with 29-20 victory over
Duke at Clemson. Rahim Abdullah returned interception 63 yards for a touchdown.
· 2001: Woody Dantzler became first 2000/1000 quarterback in NCAA history in
59-31 Clemson win.
· 2002: Charlie Whitehurst threw for school record 420 yards on 34 completions
and Aaron Hunt kicked the game winning field goal with eight seconds left in
34-31 Clemson win.
· 2003--Charlie Whitehurst threw for 33 yards on 27-40 passes and three
touchdowns in 40-7 Clemson victory. Two of the scores came just 14 seconds
apart, both to Derrick Hamilton.
Clemson Veterans versus Duke
Gaines Adams (DE) -- Had four tackles including two tackles for loss in 2003.
Had three tackles, including a sack at Duke in 2004.
Curtis Baham (WR) -- Caught two passes for 23 yards and his first career
touchdown in 2003. Did not catch a pass at Duke, but started the game in 2004.
Charles Bennett (OG) -- Had five tackles, including career high three tackles
for loss and a sack at Duke in 2004.
Tremaine Billie (WHIP) -- Had two tackles in 14 snaps in 2003. Had five tackles,
including a sack in 44 plays as a starter, in 2004.
Kyle Browning (TB) -- Ran three times for 21 yards in 2003.
Cole Chason (P) -- Punted two times for a 37.5 yard average with both punts
being downed inside the 20-yard line in 2003. Had 6 punts for 40.3 average and
had a 40.0 net, his second best of the 2004 season.
Jad Dean (PK)--Made 2-2 field goals (20 and 32 yards) and 1-1 on extra points in
David Dunham (LB) -- Made four tackles in only six snaps last season. Had 1
tackle in 14 plays at Duke in 2004.
Jamaal Fudge (ROV) - Had six total tackles, a tackle for loss, an interception,
and two pass break ups in 2003. Had two tackles in 67 plays at Duke in 2004.
Tye Hill (CB) -- Had three tackles in 2003. Made one special teams tackle in
2002. Had five tackles and a pass break up at Duke in 2004.
Reggie Merriweather (RB)--Had 18 rushes for 76 yards and a touchdown to lead
Clemson ball carries at Duke in 2004.
Chansi Stuckey (WR) -- Completed one pass for 13 yards and rushed three times
for 12 yards and a touchdown in 2003. Also caught two passes for 10 yards in
that game. Had two receptions for 23 yards and one rush for five yards at Duke
Trey Tate (DT) -- Had three tackles in only 15 snaps in 2003. Added three
tackles in 37 plays as a starter in 2004.
Anthony Waters (LB) -- Tied his career high in tackles with six in 2003 game as
a freshman. Had eight tackles in 52 snaps as a starter in 2004.
Nick Watkins (LB)--Had five tackles, including one for loss as a reserve at Duke
Charlie Whitehurst (QB) -- Is 2-1 as a starter against the Blue Devils
completing 73 of 118 passes in those three games for 868 yards and seven
touchdowns. Set the Clemson single game passing record by throwing for 420 yards
in 2002. Also had a record 34 completions and record tying four touchdown
passes. That was his first career start. Has 136.5 career efficiency rating
against the Blue Devils, his best against an ACC opponent.
Last Year vs. Duke
Duke 16, Clemson 13
Matt Brooks' 53-yard field goal sailed through the uprights as time expired to
give Duke a 16-13 come-from-behind victory over Clemson. The Blue Devils scored
10 points in the final 1:21 to beat the Tigers for the first time since 1998. In
the first quarter, Clemson moved 66 yards in eight plays, and the drive ended in
a Jad Dean 20-yard field goal. The key play on the drive was a Charlie
Whitehurst 40-yard pass to Airese Currie. Duke answered the Tiger score with a
field goal of its own, as Brooks connected from 27 yards out.
Clemson then fumbled the ensuing short kickoff and the Blue Devils recovered
the ball at the Tiger 19. Brooks hit his second field goal of the day, this time
from 21 yards away.
The Tigers came back with a field goal of their own when Dean drilled a
32-yarder 1:56 into the second quarter. Reggie Merriweather carried six times on
the drive for 46 yards. The final quarter began with Clemson on its only
touchdown drive of the day. It was a scoring march that covered 76 yards in 11
plays and ended with a Merriweather three-yard touchdown run.
The two defenses began to take over, as each team punted twice before Duke
took over at its own 46-yard line with 4:25 remaining. Mike Schneider completed
five of six passes and hit Ronnie Drummer for a four-yard touchdown pass with
1:21 left in the game. ACC Defensive Player of the Year Leroy Hill was injured
and did not play on the final two Blue Devil drives.
Clemson began its next drive at its 26-yard line. On the first play of the
drive, Whitehurst threw over the middle for Michael Collins, but Collins was on
the ground when Deonto McCormick came up with an interception at the 50. He
returned it eight yards to the Tiger 42.
Three passes gained six yards to the Clemson 36-yard line to set up Brooks.
The Tigers used two of their three timeouts to try and ice Brooks, but it did
not work, as he was good on his third-straight attempt of the day, and Clemson
saw its chances at winning season in the conference fade away. The 53-yarder was
a career long for the senior kicker.
Merriweather led the Tiger rushing attack with 76 yards on 18 carries. Currie
caught a game-high six passes for 75 yards and went over the 2,000-yard mark for
The Clemson defense played well, as it allowed only 21 yards rushing and 234
total yards, while Duke had an average starting field position at its own 43.
The rushing defense tied for the best by a Tiger team over the last 25 years in
a loss. Clemson also had 14 tackles for loss and five sacks. Travis Pugh and
Hill each had 10 tackles to lead the Tigers.
Last Duke-Clemson Meeting at Death Valley
Clemson 40, Duke 7
At Clemson, SC
Clemson followed up one of the most emotional wins in school history, a 26-10
win over 3rd ranked Florida State the previous week, with a 40-7 victory over
Duke in Memorial Stadium. Duke was coached by Ted Roof, who had taken over for
Carl Franks in October. The Tigers outgained the Blue Devils 486-174 in total
yardage. Clemson's secondary allowed just 57 passing yards the entire game. Duke
averaged just 3.2 yards per play as well.
Clemson scored 14 points in the opening quarter and never looked back. Eric
Coleman got a quarterback sack to end an early Duke threat. From there, Charlie
Whitehurst and the Clemson offense took over. After spreading the ball around
the field, Whitehurst found Hamilton across the middle. He made just one move,
and was in the endzone for a 31-yard touchdown catch.
On the ensuing kickoff, fullback Steven Jackson stripped Blue Devil receiver
Senterrio Landrum of the ball. Buddy Williams pounced on the loose football and
gave Clemson possession at the Blue Devil 25-yard line. On the very next play,
Whitehurst again hooked up with Hamilton. The touchdowns were just 14 seconds
apart, the quickest back to back touchdown scores in Clemson history.
The Tigers got the ball back quickly, and struck again. This time, Whitehurst
again hooked up with favorite target Hamilton for a 40-yard gain. Hamilton
cradled the ball in a miraculous catch down the left sideline. That set up
Whitehurst on a four-yard touchdown strike to Curtis Baham in the back of the
endzone. For Baham, it was his first career touchdown and it gave Clemson a 24-0
lead at halftime.
Clemson received the ball to start the second half, and the offense continued
to shine. Whitehurst directed a 13-play, 77-yard drive that ended with Hunt's
second field goal. His 20-yarder put Clemson ahead 27-0. Following a Duke punt,
the Tigers put the game away. Justin Miller took the punt at his own 37, made
one slight move to the left and raced 63 yards for his first career punt return
for touchdown. It was his second returned touchdown in just two years as a
Tiger. He joined Bobby Gage as the only Tigers with a kickoff return and punt
return for a score.
Duke got on the board in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter after
Kelvin Grant fumbled in Tiger territory, giving the ball to the Blue Devils.
Chris Dargan ran up the middle for a 25-yard touchdown, cutting the score to
34-7. Clemson tacked on a final touchdown with Chansi Stuckey playing
quarterback. Stuckey had caught two passes at wide receiver earlier in the
contest. He directed a 60-yard scoring drive that ended in his four-yard draw
for a touchdown.
Whitehurst became the first Clemson quarterback to throw for 3,000 yards in a
season after his 331-yard performance in this game Hamilton set the
single-season record for touchdown receptions after he caught two against Duke.
That gave him nine for the year, eclipsing the previous mark shared by Perry
Tuttle (1981), Terrance Roulhac (1984), and Tony Horne (1997). Defensively,
several Tigers contributed to the cause. Donnell Washington had a team-high
eight tackles, including two for loss and a sack. Jamaal Fudge was all over the
field, as he had a tackle for loss, two pass breakups, and an interception.
Miller also had his second interception of the season, as well as a pass
Roof and Bowden Worked on Same Staff
Duke coach Ted Roof began his coaching career in 1987 as a graduate assistant at
Alabama under Bill Curry. One of the assistant coaches on that Alabama staff was
Tommy Bowden. They were on the same staff under Curry in 1987 and 1988. Bowden
remained another year before moving on to Kentucky for the 1990 season as
offensive coordinator. Roof has also served as an assistant coach at
Massachusetts, Western Carolina and his alma mater, Georgia Tech. During his
time with the Yellow Jackets he was a nominee for the Frank Broyles Award, which
is presented to the top assistant coach in the nation.
A four-year letter winner with the Yellow Jackets as a player, Roof was a
starter for the 1983-84-85 seasons. He was one of the leaders of Georgia Tech's
"Black Watch Defense" of 1985, helping Bill Curry's Tech team to a 9-2-1 season
that included a bowl victory over Michigan State. A first-team All-ACC player,
he still ranks in the top 10 in Georgia Tech history with 417 career tackles. A
member of the Georgia Tech Athletic Hall of Fame, Roof was the top tackler for
Georgia Tech in its 14-3 win at Clemson in 1985. Roof took over as Duke's head
coach in October of 2003 and he coached his fourth career game at Clemson in
November of that year. He then defeated the Tigers in Durham last year.
Bowden Coached at Duke
Clemson Head Coach Tommy Bowden was the quarterbacks coach at Duke from 1983-86.
He was named offensive coordinator in 1985. Among the players Bowden tutored was
Anthony Dilweg, a Duke quarterback who went on to play in the NFL.
During those four years, Clemson was 4-0 against the Blue Devils, but the two
games in Durham were close. In 1983, Bowden's first year at Duke, a 9-1-1
Clemson team that finished the year ranked in the top 15 of the AP poll,
defeated the Blue Devils 38-31. Duke had the ball on the Clemson nine for a
fourth-down play on its last drive, but Clemson lineman James Robinson batted
down Ben Bennett's final pass. Bennett was 34-53 for 367 yards and four
touchdowns that day under Bowden's direction.
Close Games Continue
Clemson's run of close games continued at Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets won
by a 10-9 score. Clemson had the ball in Georgia Tech territory with under three
minutes left, but could not convert a fourth-and eight play. Over the last 14
games, Clemson has a 9-5 record. All five of the losses have been by six points
or less. Clemson has lost four games this year by a total of 14 points. That
list includes two overtime games, so the point difference in regulation in those
four losses this year is just five points.
This is the longest stretch without a loss by more than six points since the
1986-87 era when Clemson went 15 consecutive games without a loss by at least
seven points. That streak started with a 28-20 win at Wake Forest on November 1,
1986 and ended when South Carolina defeated the Tigers 20-7 in Columbia on
November 21, 1987.
Over the last 14 games the only blemishes on Clemson's record have been a
16-13 loss at Duke, a 36-30 triple overtime loss to Miami (FL), a 16-13 overtime
loss to Boston College, a 31-27 loss to Wake Forest, and the 10-9 loss to
Georgia Tech. Four of those five losses the winning opponent points were scored
within the last 33 seconds of the game. Clemson's first five games of the 2005
season were decided with offensive or defensive plays within the last minute of
play. That includes four of the five that were decided within the last two
seconds, four on the last play of the game.
Clemson and Navy were the only schools in the nation to have each of their
first five games decided by seven points or less. As far as Clemson history is
concerned, this was the first time since 1906 that Clemson played five
consecutive games in the same season that were decided by seven points or less.
That year Clemson had three scoreless ties (Virginia Tech, NC State and
Davidson), had a 6-0 win over Georgia and a 6-4 win over Auburn, to start the
season. The streak was broken at NC State when Clemson came away with a 31-10
Clemson has scored an even 200 points this year compared to 158 for the
opposition, yet the overall record is 4-4. Clemson has scored 20 touchdowns, has
made 20 extra points and kicked 20 field goals for perfect symmetry in the
scoring area so far this season. While Clemson has a +42 in the scoring column
there are many other areas that very close with the opposition and certainly are
further indicators to a many close games over the course of the season.
|Time of Possession||30:11||29:49|
Tigers Have Just Nine Turnovers and 40 Penalties
Clemson lost four turnovers and committed eight penalties in the 10-9 loss to
Georgia Tech on October 29. Those mistakes contributed to the loss, but
certainly were the exception for this 2005 Clemson team. The Tigers lost three
fumbles in the first half after going 499 consecutive offensive plays without a
fumble. Clemson was the last team in the nation to lose a fumble after going the
first seven games without losing. Reggie Merriweather broke string with a lost
fumble on a play that was first called down, but later changed to a lost fumble
by instant replay. It was Merriweather's first lost fumble as a Tiger on his
238th career carry.
While Clemson made mistakes against Tech, the Tigers are still ranked high
nationally in terms of not committing turnovers or penalties. Clemson has lost
nine turnovers for the season on three lost fumbles and six interceptions, tied
for the eighth fewest in the nation. With three lost fumbles, Clemson is tied
for seventh in the nation in fewest fumbles lost. Rutgers is now the national
leader with one lost fumble for the season. The Tigers are also 11th in the
nation in fewest penalties committed with 40 in eight games.
Whitehurst Needs 163 Yards for Third 2000-yard Season
Charlie Whitehurst needs just 163 yards passing to reach the 2000-yard passing
mark for the third time in his career. When he does he will own three of the top
five 2000-yard passing seasons in Clemson history. Whitehurst owns the Clemson
record with 3561 yards during Clemson's 13-game schedule in 2003. He had 2067
last year, which is the fourth most passing yards in a season. Woody Dantzler
and Nealon Greene are the only other Clemson quarterbacks with a 2000-yard
passing season. Whitehurst ranks sixth in ACC history in passing yards, but will
move into the top five with his next completion. Spence Fisher, ironically a
Duke quarterback (1992-95) is just two yards ahead of Whitehurst.
ACC Career Passing Yardage Leaders
|1.||Philip Rivers||NC State||2000-03||13,484|
|2.||Chris Weinke||Florida State||1997-00||9,839|
|4.||Jamie Barnette||NC State||1996-99||9,461|
|7.||Joe Hamilton||Georgia Tech||1996-99||8,882|
|8.||Darian Durant||North Carolina||2001-04||8,755|
|9.||Shawn Jones||Georgia Tech||1989-92||8,441|
|10.||Chris Rix||Florida State||2001-04||8,390|
Clemson Single Season Passing Yards Bests
Merriweather Has Back to Back 100-Yard Games
Reggie Merriweather rushed for a career high 128 yards in 23 carries against
Georgia Tech, his second consecutive 100-yard rushing performance and fourth of
his career. Merriweather had 108 yards in the win over Temple and is now the
first Tiger running back to have consecutive 100-yard rushing days since Travis
Zachery had 147 against NC State and 151 against Maryland in consecutive games
in 2000. Woody Dantzler had consecutive 100-yard games against South Carolina
and Duke to close the 2001 regular season.
A 100-yard day against Duke would make Merriweather the first Clemson player
to have three consecutive 100-yard days since Dantzler had four in a row in
2000. The last running back to have three consecutive 100-yard rushing days is
Raymond Priester, Clemson's career rushing leader, who had four in a row to
close the 1996 season.
Entering this week, Merriweather is Clemson's top rusher with 555 yards in
eight games, an average of 69.4 yards per game. That is fourth best in the
conference behind Chris Barclay of Wake Forest (124.8), Tyrone Moss of Miami
(96.4) and P. J. Daniels of Georgia Tech (84.9). Merriweather out-rushed Daniels
in their head to head battle last weekend, 128-100.
Merriweather now has 1281 career rushing yards, tops among active Tigers. He has
four touchdowns this season and 15 for his career.
Merriweather Sets Clemson Record
Clemson running back Reggie Merriweather scored the game winning touchdown for
the Tigers in the 28-24 win at Maryland on September 10. His 38-yard jaunt
around right end on a third-and-seven play with 2:58 left marked the second
straight year and third time in his career that he had scored a game winning
touchdown with three minutes or less left in game. In fact, it was the third
time he had done it in a seven-game period.
Merriweather scored from two yards out with 23 seconds left to give Clemson a
10-7 win over Maryland in 2004, then scored from a yard out in overtime against
Miami just a couple of weeks later. Clemson kept the Hurricanes out of the
endzone and Clemson had the victory.
When Merriweather scored his game winner at Maryland he became the first
player in Clemson history to score three fourth-quarter game winning touchdowns
in a career. Prior to the Maryland game, Merriweather was joined in the Tiger
record books in that category by Fred Cone, Doug Cline, George Usry, Lowndes
Shingler and Jerry Butler. Merriweather is now one game-winning play behind
David Treadwell. Treadwell booted a fourth-quarter game winning field goal for
Clemson four times in his career, including consecutive years within the last 10
seconds against Georgia (1986-87).
Two of NCAA Career Leaders in Interceptions on Display
Two of the career leaders in interceptions among active Division I players will
be on display when Clemson meets Duke this Saturday. The Blue Devils John Talley
has 11 career interceptions to rank sixth nationally, while Clemson's Jamaal
Fudge has nine career pass thefts to rank in a tie for 13th among active
Talley has five interceptions in nine games this year and ranks tied for
ninth in the nation in that category. His 11 career picks have been returned for
245 yards, also among the national leaders in that category. An All-ACC
selection last year, he already ranks second in Duke history in interception
return yards, trailing only Fred Folger (1946-48) by 38 yards.
Talley is a native of nearby Duncan, SC and Byrnes High School where he
helped Byrnes to the State 4A championship game as a senior in 2002. In addition
to his contributions on interceptions this year, Talley has 42 tackles to rank
in a tie for fifth and has seven passes broken up, giving him 12 passes defensed,
also first on the team. He is already in the top 10 in Duke history in that
Fudge has two interceptions this year and nine for his career. He is
attempting to lead Clemson in interceptions for a third consecutive season,
something no Tiger has ever done. Currently, Tye Hill is ahead of him with three
interceptions. Fudge has a fumble recovery this year and two caused fumbles,
including one last week at Georgia Tech. He has four caused fumbles in his
career. He has two career fumble recoveries to go with the nine interceptions,
giving him 11 career takeaways.
The native of Jacksonville, FL is following in the footsteps of Jacksonville
native Brian Dawkins, now an All-Pro with the Philadelphia Eagles, when it comes
to tackling. Fudge is known for his fierce tackling from the secondary and the
43 tackles for the season to rank fourth on the Clemson team. He now has252 for
his career, more than any other active Tiger. Fudge has now started 32
consecutive games, second among active Tigers behind Charlie Whitehurst's 37
consecutive starts, and has played in 45 in a row. Fudge has never missed a
Stuckey Leads ACC in Receptions
Chansi Stuckey had a solid game at Georgia Tech and got some help from his
defensive teammates, enabling him to move past Calvin Johnson into the ACC lead
in terms of receptions per game. Stuckey had eight catches for 89 yards at Tech
(including 49 yards after the catch), and now has 42 catches in eight games for
the season, a 5.25 average. Johnson was held to four receptions for 46 yards by
the Clemson defense and now has 36 receptions in seven games for 5.14 catches
per game, just below Stuckey's average.
Stuckey's 5.25 receptions per game would be fifth best in Clemson history if
the season ended today. The record is 6.75 catches per game by Rod Gardner in
1999, a year in which he had a school record 80 receptions. Airese Currie had 61
catches in 11 games last year for a 5.55 average when he led the ACC. In
addition to his pass catching, Stuckey is ranked in the top five in the ACC as a
punt returner with a 9.1 average on 16 returns. His season in that area included
a 47-yard punt return for a touchdown in the season opener against Texas A&M.
Stuckey Attempting to Join Exclusive Club
Clemson Chansi Stuckey is on the verge of joining an exclusive club in Clemson
football history. The junior receiver has accounted for a touchdown three
different ways in his a career. He threw two touchdown passes as a freshman
quarterback at Wake Forest in 2003. He ran for a touchdown as a reserve
quarterback at South Carolina in 2003. He scored a touchdown on a punt return
against Texas A&M in 2005.
Now he just needs to score a touchdown on a reception to become the third
player in Clemson history to account for a touchdown by four different means.
The other two Tigers to account for touchdowns four different ways are Bobby
Gage and Ray Mathews. Both did it four different ways in the same season. Gage
scored on a run, pass, reception and kickoff return in 1947, while Mathews
scored on a run, pass, reception and punt return in 1948.
Stuckey has 34 receptions to lead the Tigers in that category this year and
rank in a tie for second in the ACC with 4.9 catches per game. But, he is yet to
get that elusive touchdown reception. He has 69 career receptions to rank first
among active Tigers in that category.
The junior receiver was very productive in the win over NC State. In the win
at NC State, he had eight receptions for 103 yards, the second 100-yard
receiving game of his career. His total included a 39-yard reception, the
longest catch of his career. He also had 22 yards rushing on two attempts,
including a 21-yard run, the longest run of his career. In the win over Temple
he had another 100-yard all-purpose running game. He had 58 receiving yards, 23
rushing yards and 21 punt return yards in that game.
Defense Coming on Strong
Clemson's defense has held the opposition to 10 points or fewer in three
consecutive games. That is the first time Clemson's defense has done that since
the first four games of the 2000 season. Clemson held NC State to 10 points on a
Thursday night ESPN National TV victory on October 13, then held Temple to seven
in a 37-7 Clemson win. Last Saturday the Clemson defense held Georgia Tech and
All-America wide receiver Calvin Johnson to just 126 yards passing and 10
Over the last three games, Clemson has allowed the opposition just 906 yards
of total offense, 27 points and just three touchdowns, including just one
For the season, Clemson is now up to 30th in the nation in scoring defense and
33rd in total defense. And, that includes overtime periods. Clemson has given up
22 overtime points so Clemson has allowed just 17 points per game in regulation
play. A scoring defense of 17.0 would rank 15th in the nation.
Clemson Defense Allowed Last Three Games
|TD passes Allowed||1||0.3|
Tigers Hold Pack to 10 Points
Clemson had a strong defensive performance in the win over NC State. Overall,
the 21-point victory margin was the best for Clemson in the series with the Pack
since 1996 when Clemson won by 23 points in a 40-17 victory at Death Valley. The
21-point victory margin was the largest for the Tigers in any ACC game since a
40-7 win over Duke at Clemson in 2003. It was the largest margin of victory in
an ACC road game since a 39-3 win at Georgia Tech in 2003.
The Tigers were outstanding on offense and defense. The 489 yards of total
offense were the most by a Clemson team in any game since the Tigers recorded
542 yards of offense at South Carolina in 2003. Clemson held the Pack to 267
yards of offense and just 92 yards rushing in scoring 10 points. It was the
fewest points scored by NC State against Clemson since a 30-10 Tiger victory at
Clemson in 1989. It was the fewest points scored by NC State against the Tigers
in Raleigh since 1988.
The 267 yards of total defense ranked as the best by the Clemson defense this
year, as was the 4.2 yards per play allowed and the 88.1 passing efficiency
defense, and the one touchdown allowed.
Clemson Defense Solid vs. Miami
The NCAA overtime rule can play havoc with the evaluation of various statistics.
That is the case with Clemson's defensive performance against Miami (FL) in the
most recent game, a 36-30 Miami triple overtime win. Miami scored 16 of its 36
points in the three overtime periods, which will hurt Clemson's scoring defense
stats all year. The same goes for total offense and yards per game, as Miami
gained 73 yards in the overtime.
Through the 60 minutes of regulation, the Hurricanes gained just 264 yards of
total offense, 49 yards less than they gained against Florida State's famed
defensive unit. The Hurricanes threw for just 109 yards on 23 pass attempts
during regulation as Vic Koenning's defensive unit allowed less than five yards
per pass attempt. Clemson allowed just 5-14 third-down conversions in regulation
and allowed just 15 first downs. Miami gained just 4.0 yards per play during
Anthony Waters led Clemson in tackles for the second consecutive game in the
Miami loss with 11. C.J. Gaddis had his second consecutive double figure tackle
game with 10, while Sergio Gilliam had a career high nine stops, including one
behind the line of scrimmage.
In common opponents between Clemson and Florida State this year, Clemson has
had a better total defensive statistic in regulation play than the Seminoles
against Miami (FL), Boston College and Wake Forest.
Hill on Thorpe Award List
Clemson cornerback Tye Hill was a mid-season addition to the Jim Thorpe Award
list. The Tiger senior was not on the preseason list because he was not a
returning all-conference player, but he has reached the award's radar screen
with his strong performance so far this season. Hill is fifth on the Clemson
team in tackles with 43, including 32 first hits. He has three interceptions to
lead the Clemson team and rank 36th in the nation and he leads the Clemson team
in takaways with four (three interceptions and one fumble recovery).
In his September listing of top senior NFL Draft prospects, Mel Kiper ranked
Hill 14th overall, third among defensive backs. Hill made a seven-place jump in
Kiper's rankings since the season began. Kiper ranks Southern Cal quarterback
Matt Leinart first in his rankings of draft eligible players, followed by Ohio
State linebacker A.J. Hawk. The only defensive backs ranked ahead of Hill are
Virginia Tech cornerback Jimmy Williams and Tennessee defensive back Jason
Hill had a career high 11 tackles at Wake Forest, including three tackles for
loss. That was a Clemson single game record for tackles for loss by a defensive
back. He followed that up with an impressive game at NC State in front of a
press box that had 15 NFL scouts. He had five tackles and a 24-yard interception
return in that contest.
Hill was part of a Clemson secondary that held Georgia Tech star receiver
Calvin Johnson to four receptions for 46 yards, his low reception yardage total
of the season. Most importantly, Johnson did not score a touchdown and the
Yellow Jacket offense scored just 10 points for the entire game.
Mel Kiper's Top Senior Prospects
|1.||Matt Leinart||QB||Southern Cal|
|2.||A.J. Hawk||LB||Ohio State|
|6.||Jimmy Williams||CB||Virginia Tech|
|8.||Mathias Kiwanuka||DE||Boston College|
|10.||Hank Baskett||WR||New Mexico|
|12.||A.J. Nicholson||OLB||Florida State|
Hill Preseason Honors for 2005
*Writers All-America Watch List
*Honorable mention All-American by collegefootballnews.com
*First-team All-ACC by Street & Smith
*First-team All-ACC by Rivals.com
*First-team All-ACC by collegefootballnews.com
*First-team Preseason All-ACC by ACC Sportswriters Association
*Second-team All-ACC by Athlon
*Second-team All-ACC by Lindy's
*Second-team All-ACC by Phil Steele
*#5 NFL prospect at cornerback by collegefootballnews.com
*#6 Best Cornerback in nation by collegefootballnews.com
*#7 Cornerback in the nation by Lindy's
* #16 Cornerback in the nation by Phil Steele
*#17 Best Player in the ACC by collegefootballnews.com
*Clemson's "Star of the team" by collegefootballnews.com
Dean Leads Nation in Two Categories
Needs Three Field Goals to Tie Record
Clemson kicker Jad Dean leads the nation in two categories. The junior from
Greenwood paces the nation in field goals per game with 20 in eight games, an
average of 2.5 field goals per contest. He has made 20 of his 24 attempts this
year. Dean also leads the nation in kick scoring with 80 points in kick scoring
points with 80 in eight games for 10.0 per game. He is ninth in the nation in
For his career, Dean is now 32-39 on field goals for a .821 figure, third
best among active kickers. He has made 20 consecutive extra points and 43
percent of his kickoffs have not been returned.
Dean's 20 field goals already rank fifth best in Clemson history for a single
season and he still has at least three games to play. He is just three made
field goals off the school record of 23 held by Obed Ariri in 1980. Ariri led
the nation in field goals that year, the first Clemson football player to lead
the nation in any statistical category.
Dean's top performance of the year took place in Clemson's 25-24 win over
Texas A&M in the season opener. The junior was a perfect 6-6 on field goals,
including a 42-yarder with two seconds left to give the Tigers the one-point
win. Dean was successful on attempts from 21, 21, 25, 18, 44 and 42 yards in
breaking the single game record of five field goals set by Nelson Welch three
times. Welch had five against NC State in 1991, Maryland in 1992 and North
Carolina in 1994.
For his performance, Dean was named the National Player of the Week by USA
Today. In addition to setting the Clemson record for field goals in a game, Dean
also established a Clemson record for kick scoring points in a game with 19.
National Leaders in Field Goals 2005
|1.||Jad Dean, Clemson||8||20-24||2.50|
|2.||Brandon Coutu, Georgia||8||17-22||2.13|
|3.||Connor Hughes, Virginia||7||14-17||2.00|
|Darren McCaleb, S. Mississippi||7||14-16||2.00|
|Alexis Serna, Oregon State||8||16-18||2.00|
|6.||Sam Swank, Wake Forest||9||17-21||1.89|
|Garrett Rivas, Michigan||9||17-22||1.89|
National Leaders in Field Goals 2005
|1.||Jad Dean, Clemson||8||20-24||80||10.0|
|2.||Clint Stitser, Fresno State||6||10-12||59||9.83|
|3.||Brandon Pace, Virginia Tech||8||14-17||78||9.75|
|4.||Alex Trlica, Texas Tech||8||10-12||77||9.63|
|5.||Darren McCaleb, S. Mississippi||7||14-16||67||9.57|
|6.||Alexis Serna, Oregon State||8||16-18||76||9.50|
|Brandon Coutu, Georgia||8||17-22||76||9.50|
Clemson Single Season Field Goals Bests
Freshmen Making Contributions
When it came time to decide on nominations for ACC Rookie of the Week after the
Temple game, it was a difficult decision. Of the 68 Tiger players who appeared
against Temple, 19 were freshmen (red-shirt or first-year). On defense, seven
Clemson players were credited with five or more tackles and four of the seven
were freshmen. Many made significant contributions to the victory and could have
been ACC Rookie-of-the-Week nominees.
· Antonio Clay led the Tigers in tackles with nine in his team
high 62 plays of action. Clay had two tackles for loss for nine yards, including
a seven-yard sack and one quarterback pressure. He was the first Clemson
first-year freshman to lead the Tigers in tackles since Leroy Hill did it in
2001 against Duke.
· Dorell Scott played 31 snaps and had a career high six
tackles, including his first career sack. He also had two fumble recoveries, the
first Clemson player in nine years to recover two fumbles in the same game. It
also tied the Clemson single game record for fumble recoveries, as he was the
15th player in Clemson history to do it.
· Aaron Kelly had seven receptions for 155 yards and a
touchdown to lead the Clemson offense. His 155 receiving yards established a
Clemson freshman record and it was the sixth most receiving yards by any player
in a game in Clemson history.
Kelly now ranks second on the Clemson team in receptions with 33 and is second
in yardage with 408. Freshman James Davis is second in rushing yards with 434
and is fourth in receptions with 13. Freshman safety Michael Hamlin is seventh
on the team in tackles with 38 and third in interception return yards with 31.
Tigers Had 300-yard Passer, 150-yard receiver, 100-yard Rusher vs.
Clemson had a 300-yard passer, a 150-yard receiver and a 100-yard rusher in the
win over Temple, a first in Clemson history. Charlie Whitehurst threw for 307
yards, Aaron Kelly caught seven passes for 155 yards and Reggie Merriweather ran
for 108 yards on 17 attempts to lead the 514-yard total offense effort. It was
Clemson's first 500-yard game since the 2003 season when the Tigers had 542
yards in a 63-17 win at South Carolina.
The closest Clemson had come to that three-way accomplishment took place in
1981 in a victory over Maryland. That day, Perry Tuttle had 161 receiving yards,
Cliff Austin had 101 rushing yards and Homer Jordan threw for 270 yards. Jordan
threw for 214 yards in the first half of that game when Clemson took a 21-0
lead. But, Danny Ford played conservatively in the second half on offense and
the Tigers won the team 21-0 to clinch the ACC Championship and continue an
undefeated season that concluded in a National Championship.
Tigers Gain 7.7 Yards/Play
The yards per play statistic had not been a good indicator of success in Clemson
football games for the first five games of the season. In each of Clemson's
first five games the team with the higher yards per play statistic lost the
game. But, Clemson averaged 7.7 yards per play in defeating Temple. The 7.7
yards per play figure in the win over Temple ranked third best since Tommy
Bowden has been the head coach at Clemson (80 games). The only yards per play
figures better than the Temple game were the 8. 0 against Duke in 2001 and the
8.1 at South Carolina in 2003.
Clemson is now averaging 5.6 yards per play this season, much improved over
the 4.4 figure in 2004. The current 5.6 yards per play average is third best in
Clemson history. The school record for a season is 6.2 per play in 1950.
Browning Always Productive
Over his career it seems that every time Kyle Browning gets a chance, he makes
the most of it. That trend continued in the victory over Temple when the
red-shirt senior caught a 41-yard scoring pass in the first quarter from
quarterback Charlie Whitehurst. It was the first touchdown of the game in
Clemson's 37-7 victory. Browning, the smallest player among the regular Tiger
players at 5-7, had 8-23 rushing and 3-49 receiving, giving him 72 yards in 11
touches. He continued the fine play with 6-33 rushing at Georgia Tech.
Browning has made a habit of making big plays throughout his career. In 2003
he scored on a "Panther Play" in the Peach Bowl victory over sixth-ranked
Tennessee. It was an eight-yard run that gave Clemson a lead it would never
relinquish. Then 2004 began with Browning scoring the winning touchdown in
overtime against Wake Forest on an 11-yard pass from Charlie Whitehurst. He also
had a 54-yard run for a touchdown against Georgia Tech in the second game of the
season. For his career, Browning now has four touchdowns, two rushing and two
Tigers Throw for 359 Yards
Clemson threw for 359 yards as a team in the win over Temple, the third highest
single game performance in Clemson history and the most by the Tigers in the
history of Clemson Memorial Stadium. Charlie Whitehurst had his Clemson record
eighth career 300-yard passing game, as he accumulated 307 yards on 19-27
passing. Backup quarterback Will Proctor had his most extensive action as a
passer as he completed 3-6 passes for 52 yards and his first career touchdown.
The only passing yardage totals higher in Clemson history are the 420 yards
at Duke in 2002 (Charlie Whitehurst's first career start) and a 364-yard passing
performance at Duke in 1963. The previous record for Clemson Memorial Stadium by
a Clemson team was 350 yards against Wake Forest in 1998. Clemson has now thrown
for at least 330 yards in a game 10 times, and Tommy Bowden has been the Tigers
head coach for seven of those 10 games.
Clemson's Highest Passing Yardage Games
|350||(21-39)||H-Wake Forest (19-29)||9-26-1998|
|343||(35-57)||A-Wake Forest (17-45)||11-1-2003|
|342||(23-48)||A-North Carolina (13-17)||11-6-1965|
|334||(18-28)||A-Florida State (31-48)||10-3-2002|
|333||(23-27)||a-NC State (45-37)||10-13-2001|
Kelly Sets Freshman Record
Wide receiver Aaron Kelly set a Clemson single game freshman record against
Temple when he had seven receptions for 155 yards and a touchdown. The yardage
total broke the Clemson freshman record of 139 yards (on six catches) by Roscoe
Crosby against Duke in 2001 and was the sixth most by any player in Clemson
history. Kelly's seven receptions were two off the single game record for a
freshman. Derrick Hamilton had receptions for 90 yards against Virginia in 2001
and Terry Smith had nine for 84 against Maryland in 1990.
Kelly, a native of Georgia, has 33 receptions for 408 yards so far this
season. He still has a ways to go to catch Hamilton's freshman records in both
areas. In 2001, Hamilton had 53 receptions for 684 yards. Kelly has had at least
two receptions in every game this year and at least four in six of the eight
contests. He and Chansi Stuckey are the only Tigers to have at least one
reception in every game this year.
He had his first career kickoff return at Georgia Tech, an 81-yard run that
set up a Clemson score. It was the third longest non-scoring kickoff return in
Clemson history and first play for over 80 yards this season.
Clemson's top Reception yardage
|182||7||Rod Gardner||Sr.||at North Carolina||2000|
|175||7||Derrick Hamilton||Jr.||at Maryland||2003|
|163||5||Jerry Butler||Jr.||at Georgia Tech||1977|
|161||7||Perry Tuttle||Sr.||Wake Forest||1981|
|156||8||Terry Smith||Sr.||at Florida State||1993|
|152||7||Tony Horne||Sr.||at Wake Forest||1997|
|152||9||Airese Currie||Sr.||Wake Forest||2004|
Book Ends Post Top Game
Senior defensive end Charles Bennett and junior bandit linebacker Gaines Adams
had their most productive game of the season against Temple. The Clemson
"Bookends" combined for five tackles for loss and three sacks in the victory, a
big reason the Owls had just 12 yards rushing in the game. For the first time
this year, the Bookends met at the quarterback to combine on a sack.
Bennett had his best game of the young 2005 season and the second best tackle
game of his career when he had eight tackles against Miami (FL) on September 17.
The native of Camden, SC had five first hits and three assists for his eight
tackles. Two of the eight were behind the line of scrimmage, including an
eight-yard sack on Miami's last possession of regulation, a stop that gave
Clemson the ball back with a chance to tie the game. He also had three
quarterback pressures in the Miami game.
Bennett's career high for tackles in a game is 10, recorded at Florida State
last year, a game in which he also had two tackles for loss. The sack against
Miami (FL) was the seventh of his career and the first this season. He has now
started every game over the last two years with the exception of the Texas A&M
game in 2004. For the year, Bennett has 32 tackles on 21 first hits and 11
assists. He has 5.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks to go with eight quarterback
Gaines Adams was moved to the "Bandit" end position last spring, as defensive
coordinator Vic Koenning sought to take advantage of the 6-5, 260-pounder's
athletic ability. Adams showed that athletic ability in the win over Maryland
recording a career high eight tackles, including four tackles for loss and 2.5
sacks. He was named ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week for that performance.
Adams continued his fine play in the win over Temple with another 2.5 sacks.
He is currently in the top five in the ACC in sacks with his five for 30 yards.
He also leads the team in quarterback pressures with 18. He has 38 tackles
overall to rank first among Clemson's front four players. Adams, who played
eight-man football at Cambridge Academy in Greenwood,