Postgame notes for Clemson vs. Louisville


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CLEMSON HEAD COACH DABO SWINNEY

On the significance of this big win:
“We want to be 12-0 and you can't win 12 until you win five. It was a great win. Louisville played their hearts out. We stuck it out in the third quarter. We had the right plays, but we fumbled the ball and turned it over. At the end of the day, you either have the heart or you don’t. You have the will to win or you don’t. What can you say? Our fans were awesome. At the end of the day, this is 19 in a row at home and we’re moving on to the next one.”

On Deshaun Watson:
“Here’s what’s great about tonight. A lot of adversity. You’ve got balls that are tipped, perfect throws, interceptions, it’s a crazy thing. You throw a touchdown pass to (Jordan) Leggett, he gets a fumble, but they kept playing. We always talk about just play the next play. But at the end of the day, us coaches get way too much credit. This is a game. Players make plays. That’s how you win football games. We didn’t make enough of them in the third quarter. I love my staff because they put the players in position to be successful in the fourth quarter when you have to have it. ‘Clemson tough.’ We’re built for this. We’re built for games like this. Those guys have got the heart of a champion and they showed it tonight. I love my staff, love my team, love these fans. This is what it’s all about. It doesn’t get much better than this.”

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LOUISVILLE HEAD COACH BOBBY PETRINO QUOTES

Opening statement:
“It’s a tough loss. I am very proud of our team and the way we competed back in the second half. The guys that were out there were playing really hard and we got back in the game, took the lead and we weren’t able to finish it. It’s a real tough loss. We will come back though and we will be alright.”

On the last play:
“They brought pressure and Lamar (Jackson) knew where he needed to go with the ball. He just came up a yard short.”

On the first-half penalties:
“I guess you need to watch the video and see so you can see what was happening out there. You probably don’t want me to say. I guess you need to watch the video and see how the game went about in the first half.”

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CLEMSON PLAYER QUOTES - OFFENSE

Deshaun Watson, QB

Overall thoughts:
“I can’t even describe it. One of the best experiences I’ve ever had. Just the ups and downs. I love our Clemson fans for sticking with us and believing. I love my teammates and coaches for sticking together and believing in each other.”

On how his team responded in the fourth quarter:
“Just believe. They came out believing. I said let’s be great. That’s what we wanted to do. Everyone just mind your ‘Ps’ and ‘Qs.’ Everyone stay true to themselves. We drove down and got the touchdown and we made plays like coach (Dabo) Swinney said, ‘Players make plays.’ And that’s what we did.”

Jordan Leggett, TE

On the emotion at the end of the game:
“A lot of emotion...me and a couple of the offensive guys couldn’t even watch the last play. It felt like it was the Notre Dame game all over again. Getting that stop on fourth down meant a lot for the game and we were all excited.”

On how the offense turned it back on again after the third-quarter struggles:
“You are going to face adversity in everything, so we just handled it, got our offense together and focussed our minds and went back out there.”

Wayne Gallman, RB

On how fun the night was:
“It was fun. It was fun from the first snap. I could still go two more quarters because I am not that tired.”

On the win on his birthday:
“No, it feels the same. Birthdays are getting old to me.”

On if it feels like this win puts Clemson in the driver’s seat in the ACC Atlantic Division:
“Yes, because we have to take it one game as if it is the national championship, because we are going to get everybody’s best shot and that means we have to play up to par. So we have to prepare and get ready.”

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CLEMSON PLAYER QUOTES - DEFENSE

Ben Boulware, LB

On the end of the game:
“I started thinking about the Notre Dame game and we’re just gonna find a way to win. It was sloppy and there’s a lot of things that we can get corrected, but I’m so proud of our guys and the resiliency and maturity. We found a way to win.”

On Lamar Jackson:
“He’s a freak. I was very confident going in that our scheme would shut him down, but hats off to that dude. He’s a freak athlete. A lot of times, we had good leverage on him and he just outran us and made a play. He’s definitely probably the best player I’ve played against.”

Cordrea Tankersley, CB

On the game:
“It was just a tremendous game for us. It felt like the Notre Dame game. Marcus Edmond came up big for us. He’s somebody who’s growing and trying to mature, and for him to go and make a play like that, that really helps us.”

On stopping Lamar Jackson:
“I felt like we did everything we could. Of course we had a few minor mistakes, but overall I feel like we did a great job of putting ourselves in a position to do the best we could. We got the win and that’s all that matters.”

On Louisville:
“Louisville, hands down, is a great team. They gave us hell and went out and played their hearts out. In a top-five matchup, that is what you expect.”

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