Playoff; Offensive Records; Ring of Honor


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Playoff; Offensive Records; Ring of Honor

Email Bag
In this format, we will publish your comments and answer your questions. To submit a comment or questions, please email me at mickeyplyler@hotmail.com.

Mickey,

You presented a very interesting point of whether by the end of the year Clemson or Notre Dame would have the tougher schedule. In the pre-season poll, it was not even close as 4 teams that ND play, Stanford, Virginia Tech, USC, and Michigan were all ranked in the top 21 while the only ranked team on our schedule was South Carolina at 24th. Now after week 6 the table is reversed and Notre Dame's only ranked opponent is Michigan at 12th and both NC State at 20 and Texas A&M at 22 are Clemson's ranked opponents.

You are exactly correct about waiting a few more weeks being the thing to do but in reality it is probably only a one week wait for the ACC. The winner of the Clemson-NC State will be in the drivers seat for a playoff bid since they are the only undefeated teams in the conference. No question with the lack of strength of the ACC this year, only the championship winner is in consideration for a playoff bid. I don't believe even the ACC champion will make the playoffs with a loss but let's hope that is a moot point and the Tigers run the table.

As far as Notre Dame goes, my guess is after week 12, they will still be undefeated and they will be in the playoffs but I also thought Oklahoma would stay undefeated. Your wait and see advice is the best advice. Has it ever happened that potentially, games on the same day of the real USC against Notre Dame and of the pretend USC against Clemson might determine who makes the playoffs. The plot thickens. Keep winning and all Clemson Tigers are happy.

Andy

Andy,
There may come a day when we get five undefeated Power 5 teams and that would be a good thing because that would lead to an eight-team playoff. However, it’s crazy that every year it works out the way it has so far. Each year there are about ten undefeated teams on October 1 and about five on November 1, yet we end the regular season with a couple at the most. I think the length of the season, injuries, pressure, complacency, scouting, and weather become factors. In the end, just be better than the opponent each Saturday and the rest will take care of itself.

Mickey,
Do you think Clemson is holding plays back for Championship season or is what we see what we get?

Clemson seems to have an issue getting receivers open and protecting the quarterback. Is this related to poor pass protection or bad route running?

What is the fix for the passing game?

Has having a pocket passer rather than a dual threat quarterback exposed deficiencies in Clemson's offensive line?
Mike

Mike,
They were playing two quarterbacks earlier in the year and that lead to some inefficiency. Lawrence has taken over and will improve as he gets more experience. The staff will also have a better feel for the offense now they have settled in on one quarterback.

I also think the staff plays a bunch of players and that leads to a little inefficiency as well. However, this leads to the team being fresher later in the year.

The pass protection has not been great, but I don’t see any issues getting receivers open.

I don’t see major issues in the passing game. Lawrence is getting better each week, but the running game has been so good that the passing game has not been the focal point. Remember there is only one ball and the running game appears to be the first option at this point.

The offensive line is still coming together. They played better at Wake Forest.

This offense has been very good so far this season, better than your email suggests. Clemson is averaging more points, more yards and more yards per play than any offense in school history. I am not sure many realize that statistically this offense is on pace to break almost every major offensive school record.

Only four times in school history has any offense averaged over 500 yards per game with the previous best of 514 yards per game in 2015. The offense is averaging 531 yards or over 100 yards per game more this year than last.

In terms of points per game, only twice has any Clemson offense averaged over 40 points per game with the previous best 41.0 in 2012. This offense is averaging 42.2 points per game which is nine points more than last year.

Finally, think of all the great running teams Clemson has fielded. The best in school history is 289 yards per game in 1978. This year Clemson is averaging 280.83 which is second best in school history and 86 more yards per game than last year.

We can always nitpick, but let’s remember that so far this offense has scored more points per game, more yards per play and more yards per game than any Clemson offense in school history.

Mickey,
Love the blog. Does Terry Don Phillips deserve consideration for the Ring of Honor? Aside from Promoting and then Hiring Dabo, he hired Oliver Purnell, Brad Brownell, and oversaw the West Endzone facility expansion. (I’m probably leaving something else out). I think about how far Clemson Athletics came from 2002 when he was hired, to 2012 when he retired. What are your thoughts?

Jeremy

Jeremy,
I don’t think that will happen. Spiller, Watson, Hopkins, Watkins, Wilkins, Boyd, and several other players should be in the conversation and in the front of that line. Remember the Hall of Fame is a prerequisite for the Ring of Honor.

The Brad Hughes All-State Insurance Agency

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