Tigers Throttle Chippewas, 70-14


by - Correspondent -
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CLEMSON - After two weeks of brewing and stewing following the Virginia Tech loss, Clemson's players, coaches and fans all needed a laugher. Enter Central Michigan.

The Tigers rolled up over 650 yards of total offense Saturday en route to a 70-14 victory over the Chippewas. The game was played before an announced sellout Homecoming crowd at Death Valley. Clemson is now 62-19-3 all time on Homecoming, 32-3-2 since 1971.

The 70 points represented the most scored by Clemson in the Tommy Bowden era, surpassing the 63 tallied against South Carolina in 2003.

The non-conference victory improves the Tigers to 5-2 and, for the moment anyway, gives everyone associated with the program something positive on which to focus.

"I thought we made a pretty good statement that they were serious about the rest of the season," said head coach Tommy Bowden.

The afternoon proved to be an offensive showcase for coordinator Rob Spence. While at Toledo his teams were 4-0 against CMU and averaged nearly 40 points per game in the process.

Saturday, Spence's offense outdid itself. Paced by a rejuvenated rushing attack the Tigers were virtually unstoppable. The rush offense was led by Thunder and Lightning - aka James Davis and C.J. Spiller - who in recent weeks, hampered by inconsistent offensive line play, had been more like Overcast and Drizzle.

But they were running free Saturday. Davis (88, two TDs) and Spiller (96, TD ) combined for 184 rushing yards. And even Sadat Chambers got into the act, ripping off a 63-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter en route to 112 yards on the day.

"We've kind of been half and half on this running game. Sometimes your just not going to hit on all cylinders every game," Bowden said. "We rushed for over 300 yards. If you get your hat on the right guy and keep them covered...our backs are pretty explosive. I thought our offensive line did a good job of covering them up."

With the line easily handling the CMU front seven, Clemson's offense moved almost at will.

The solid ground attack was of great benefit to quarterback Cullen Harper. The junior finished the day 20-of-22 for 273 yards and five touchdowns. His favorite target for the second straight week was Aaron Kelly, who caught seven balls for 121 yards and two touchdowns - including a career-long 63-yarder in the first half.

Jacoby Ford also had a pair of scoring catches, while Davis caught one to bring his day's total to three.

Meanwhile, Clemson's No. 1-ranked pass defense easily passed its biggest test of the season.

Chippewas' quarterback Dan LeFevour threw for 204 yards and two touchdowns. But he was also intercepted twice, and most of his damage came after Clemson had run off 42 unanswered points to overcome an early 7-0 deficit.

The success in keeping LeFevour in check came despite some unexpected wrinkles the Chippewas threw at the Tigers.

"They took away the coverages we wanted to use most against them...We put in five variations of coverages in the first half alone, things we really hadn't practiced," said defensive coordinator Vic Koening. "But our system lends itself to being able to do that."

Clemson is back in action next Saturday, traveling to Maryland (3:30 p.m.).



Team Statistics (Final)

CMU CU

FIRST DOWNS................... 15 35
Rushing..................... 3 18
Passing..................... 12 16
Penalty..................... 0 1
NET YARDS RUSHING............. 76 341
Rushing Attempts............ 24 61
Average Per Rush............ 3.2 5.6
Rushing Touchdowns.......... 0 4
Yards Gained Rushing........ 85 352
Yards Lost Rushing.......... 9 11
NET YARDS PASSING............. 216 315
Completions-Attempts-Int.... 21-37-2 23-27-1
Average Per Attempt......... 5.8 11.7
Average Per Completion...... 10.3 13.7
Passing Touchdowns.......... 2 6
TOTAL OFFENSE YARDS........... 292 656
Total offense plays......... 61 88
Average Gain Per Play....... 4.8 7.5
Fumbles: Number-Lost.......... 2-2 2-0
Penalties: Number-Yards....... 4-41 3-15
PUNTS-YARDS................... 6-249 1-42
Average Yards Per Punt...... 41.5 42.0
Net Yards Per Punt.......... 37.0 46.0
Inside 20................... 1 1
50+ Yards................... 1 0
Touchbacks.................. 1 0
Fair catch.................. 2 0
KICKOFFS-YARDS................ 3-172 11-697
Average Yards Per Kickoff... 57.3 63.4
Net Yards Per Kickoff....... 20.3 39.3
Touchbacks.................. 0 0
Punt returns: Number-Yards-TD. 1--4-0 1-7-0
Average Per Return.......... -4.0 7.0
Kickoff returns: Number-Yds-TD 11-265-0 3-111-0
Average Per Return.......... 24.1 37.0
Interceptions: Number-Yds-TD.. 1-0-0 2-0-0
Fumble Returns: Number-Yds-TD. 0-0-0 0-0-0
Miscellaneous Yards........... 0 0
Possession Time............... 24:35 35:25
1st Quarter................. 5:52 9:08
2nd Quarter................. 7:26 7:34
3rd Quarter................. 4:26 10:34
4th Quarter................. 6:51 8:09
Third-Down Conversions........ 5 of 13 12 of 16
Fourth-Down Conversions....... 0 of 1 1 of 2
Red-Zone Scores-Chances....... 2-2 7-7
Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 1-7 0-0
PAT Kicks..................... 2-2 10-10
Field Goals................... 0-0 0-1

Individual Statistics

Central Michigan

Rushing No Gain Loss Net TD Lg Avg
--------------------------------------------
VOLNY, Carl 10 38 2 36 0 11 3.6
LeFEVOUR, Dan 5 31 0 31 0 12 6.2
DOANE, Troy 4 12 0 12 0 9 3.0
HOSKINS, Justin 4 4 3 1 0 2 0.2
BROWN, Antonio 1 0 4 -4 0 0 -4.0
Totals... 24 85 9 76 0 12 3.2

Passing Att-Cmp-Int Yds TD Long Sack
--------------------------------------------
LeFEVOUR, Dan 34-20-1 204 2 28 0
BRUNNER, Brian 3-1-1 12 0 12 0
Totals... 37-21-2 216 2 28 0

Receiving No. Yds TD Long
-----------------------------------
BROWN, Antonio 6 40 0 12
BROOKS, Duane 5 49 2 15
GARDNER, Justin 3 38 0 14
HOSKINS, Justin 3 37 0 28
ANDERSON, Bryan 2 26 0 16
WATT, J.J. 1 14 0 14
PITTS, Jean 1 12 0 12
Totals... 21 216 2 28

Punting No. Yds Avg Long In20 TB
----------------------------------------------
MIKULEC, Tony 6 249 41.5 52 1 1
Totals... 6 249 41.5 52 1 1

Punts Kickoffs Intercept
All Returns No.Yds.Lg No.Yds.Lg No.Yds.Lg
---------------------------------------------
BROWN, Antonio 0 0 0 7 185 35 0 0 0
BROOKS, Duane 0 0 0 1 23 23 0 0 0
PITTS, Jean 0 0 0 2 44 25 0 0 0
GORDY, Josh 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
BERNING, Matt 0 0 0 1 13 13 0 0 0
TEAM 1 -4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals... 1 -4 0 11 265 35 1 0 0

Field goal attempts
----------------------------------------

Kickoffs No. Yds TB OB Avg
---------------------------------------
AGUILA, Andrew 3 172 0 0 57.3

Clemson

Rushing No Gain Loss Net TD Lg Avg
--------------------------------------------
Chambers, S 10 112 0 112 1 63 11.2
Spiller, C 15 96 0 96 1 18 6.4
Davis, J 22 90 2 88 2 15 4.0
Ford, J 2 21 0 21 0 12 10.5
Reese, T 3 12 0 12 0 6 4.0
Harper, C 5 14 7 7 0 7 1.4
Macko, P 4 7 2 5 0 7 1.2
Totals... 61 352 11 341 4 63 5.6

Passing Att-Cmp-Int Yds TD Long Sack
--------------------------------------------
Harper, C 22-20-1 273 5 63 1
Reese, T 5-3-0 42 1 22 0
Totals... 27-23-1 315 6 63 1

Receiving No. Yds TD Long
-----------------------------------
Kelly, A 7 121 2 63
Grisham, T 4 59 0 36
Spiller, C 3 19 0 9
Ford, J 2 44 2 36
Harris, L 2 20 0 11
Davis, J 2 19 1 11
Palmer, M 2 11 0 9
Dye, X 1 22 1 22
Totals... 23 315 6 63

Punting No. Yds Avg Long In20 TB
----------------------------------------------
Maners, J 1 42 42.0 42 1 0
Totals... 1 42 42.0 42 1 0

Punts Kickoffs Intercept
All Returns No.Yds.Lg No.Yds.Lg No.Yds.Lg
---------------------------------------------
Spiller, C 0 0 0 1 17 17 0 0 0
Ford, J 1 7 7 1 82 82 0 0 0
Chancellor, C 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Linthicum, B 0 0 0 1 12 12 0 0 0
McDaniel, D 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Totals... 1 7 7 3 111 82 2 0 0

Field goal attempts
----------------------------------------
Buchholz, M 2nd 12:20 48 yds - Missed

Kickoffs No. Yds TB OB Avg
---------------------------------------
Buchholz, M 10 634 0 0 63.4
Jackson, Ri 1 63 0 0 63.0

FUMBLES: Central Michigan-TEAM 1-1; BROWN,
Antonio 1-1. Clemson-Chambers, S 1-0; Harris, L
1-0.

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