Vote of Confidence


by - Senior Writer -
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Stoudt set a Clemson completion percentage single-game record by completing 19-of-20 passes for 143 yards and 3 scores. (TigerNet Staff)

CLEMSON – In the world of sports, a “vote of confidence” from management usually implies that a change is about to be made, but that wasn’t the case Saturday afternoon following Clemson’s 52-13 victory over S.C. State in Death Valley.

In the hallway outside of the Clemson locker room following the game, Clemson quarterback Tajh BoydTajh Boyd
RS Sr. Quarterback
#10 6-1, 225
Hampton, VA

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came out for interviews and stood in his usual spot, but instead of taking the interviews by himself he brought in backup quarterback Cole StoudtCole Stoudt
Jr. Quarterback
#18 6-4, 205
Dublin, OH

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and stood with his arm over Stoudt’s shoulder for much of the interview, a vote of confidence from a Heisman Trophy candidate to his understudy.

For his part, Stoudt was outstanding Saturday against the Bulldogs, setting a Clemson completion percentage single-game record by completing 19-of-20 passes for 143 yards and three scores.

Boyd said he was more than happy to put on a baseball cap and watch Stoudt perform, and then said that many ACC schools would see Stoudt start.

“A really great performance, I was excited to go out there and watch him play,” Boyd said. “Like I said before, I won’t retract my statement. Cole could be a starter at any place in the ACC. He went out there and proved that today. He went out there and had a stellar performance. I can’t speak more highly of the guy.”

Boyd told the media that he was pleased with Stoudt’s poise; another player told me that Stoudt showed improved arm strength over last season; and Stoudt’s own father – former NFL quarterback Cliff Stoudt – told me that he was impressed with his son’s accuracy on the short throws.

All in all, a good performance according to offensive coordinator Chad MorrisChad Morris
Offensive Coordinator / QBs
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; however, Morris said that Stoudt wasn’t entirely perfect and pointed to the one incompletion.

“Cole’s a guy, he comes to work every day,” Morris said. “He punches the time clock. He’s not going to beat you with his feet. He sees the field. He’s got a calmness about himself. He plays with great confidence – 19-for-20 and he overthrew the 20-ball, literally. That was his fault.”

Clemson head coach Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
Head Coach
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said he was also impressed with Stoudt’s poise, but that poise was nothing new to those who see Stoudt every day.

“He’s cool. He’s confident. He has such great composure,” Swinney said. “Any of y’all that have really paid attention to Cole Stoudt, he’s been that way since he’s been here. That’s really his personality. You got to know Cole, he’s just like that. He never really changes. He’s a very competitive guy and takes a lot of pride in his preparation. He’s just always ready and he always has been since the day he’s been here.”

Swinney then said that Stoudt has a chance to play somewhere after Clemson.

“He’s got some really good tape. He’s one of those guys that’s got a chance to play on the next level, just because he’s had a chance to put some really good film together,” he said. “And he’s 6-4, or whatever, runs better than you think and can throw the ball all over the field. It’s a great luxury having that guy ready to go.”


Stoudt said he was happy with his performance, and said the performance was the result of a lot of hard work.

“I am happy with it. It was a good day,” Stoudt said. “Tajh and the team were there, they kept me in it, and it was a good day. “We’ve been working on those plays all year and working together. When you get in a groove out there, it is fun.”

Two of Stoudt’s scoring tosses went to freshman wide receiver Germone HopperGermone Hopper
RS Fr. Wide Receiver
#5 6-0, 170
Charlotte, NC

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, and Hopper said that he and Stoudt have managed to develop a good bit of chemistry working with the second team.

“Cole did a very good job today. Being that we’re second team, we go a lot in practice,” Hopper said. “He’s my quarterback in practice. The second team, it was basically chemistry between us two. Cole did a very good job today in reading his reads and going out there and throwing that ball.”


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