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What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?
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Replies: 42  

What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

emoji_events [9]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:01 PM

I had the day off, and was dog sitting for my mom, who was at the game.

I had the day off from work. I took the back roads one town over to one of my favorite restaurants, listened to all the pregame chatter, drank a couple canned Mtn Dews, ate some little debbies for dessert on the way home, then got back to the house about 15 mins before the game started. I remember time went by SO slow! So, I did my best to kill as much as I could.

I remember the year prior I thought we could beat Alabama, but I wasn’t sure we knew how to win a game of that magnitude against a program like Alabama…yet

But that year, I had a confidence we would win, because we now had the experience and motivation to get us over the top. That, and I didnt think Jalen Hurts had what it took to beat a Deshaun Watson led offense.

Curious how you spent that day, or any other National Title Gameday.

Go Tigers! ?????

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[4]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:08 PM

I can't remeber specifically what I did that day, but I do remember what I did the next day after Tampa.

I was there for that one and tailgated too hard that day and had a "brown out". I remember waking up with a raging hang over and looked on my phone to see who won after I made sure I had my wallet. Then, I spent the day watching the game to see what happened.

Go Tigers !!

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 7, 2022, 4:35 AM

Immediately after the game my phone starting ringing off the hook from people that knew I was a rabid Tiger fan. All offering their congratulations on the huge Tiger victory. This went on to almost sunrise as several of them were in the Midwest and the west coast. Anytime Clemson was playing anyone in their area, which was usually a bowl game, I'd start telling them to make sure and watch the Tigers as we were going to wear out whomever the opponent was. It was a wonderful night indeed.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?


Jan 6, 2022, 9:11 PM

Sounds like you were confident we were going to win.

Liquid Confident ??

Go Tigers!?????

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:15 PM

Those night games can sneak up on you.... 3:30 is the best kick off time. Get a little extra tail gating, but not too much. Hit the game at the perfect level and good to go by the end of the game. Nooners are too early, but I don't have kids.

I was very confident in Tampa... and the weather was perfect.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:31 PM

Perfect weather? It was cold as a witches t_t. However, when the clock hit 0:00, the warmth of a National Championship overtook the cold.

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Call me greedy, but I kept thinking about the year before...

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:14 PM

and how it should have been two in-a-row. In 2015, our team was clearly better but we got outcoached.

In 2016, I gotta admit being down 14-0 and seeing how Alabama's players were deliberately targeting heads while tackling, I was not feeling confident.

But DW4...

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Re: Call me greedy, but I kept thinking about the year before...


Jan 6, 2022, 9:19 PM

MoCity said:

and how it should have been two in-a-row. In 2015, our team was clearly better but we got outcoached.

.




Yeah, but that’s understandable with it being our coaching staffs 1st appearance too. But, it’s show that Saban knew what he’s was up against. He knew we they couldn’t stop us

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Re: Call me greedy, but I kept thinking about the year before...

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:35 PM

Not sure I agree about 2015. Our special teams were awful.....blocked field goal before half time, getting tricked on the onside kick, and relinquishing a kickoff return for a touchdown. Also, their tight end burned us on at least 3 plays. The defense gave up too many chunk plays. I thought 'Bammer was a bit better in that game. Certainly not in 2016 and 2018.

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IMO, all those chunks plays were inexcusable

[3]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:09 PM

There were just too many of them. A big part of it was coaching. You just can't have an entire secondary blow it that many times. It was ridiculous.

Another thing: So many of the busted plays happened after Mackensie Alexander got hurt. If he played the entire game, we would have won by 10+ points.

To this day when I hear his name mentioned or watch him play, 2015 comes to mind.

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Their tight end, Howard, still shows up in my nightmares.

[3]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:44 PM

Just so wide open so many times. Ugh.

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Re: Their tight end, Howard, still shows up in my nightmares.

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 11:32 PM

Those were hard to watch.
But for me, it’s the kickoff return. Not even the surprise onside kick. The kickoff return was the back breaker.

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Re: Their tight end, Howard, still shows up in my nightmares.


Jan 6, 2022, 11:45 PM

I was at the BWs near the stadium talking to a Bama fan and I remember him saying he felt like OJ was going to have a big game.

Dang him for being right.

Did not go in to Tampa. What I do remember about both games was I was so proud of the boys win or lose. The tears were flowing after Tampa though!

The Bama blowout was fun. I was at a bar in Uptown in Minneapolis with other Tiger fans. We had a blast that went well into the night.

Still hate the time and day of the NC game. So lame to do to CFB fans.

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Re: Call me greedy, but I kept thinking about the year before...


Jan 7, 2022, 6:36 AM

If I recall correctly, we were driving at the end with the goal line in sight, but ran out of time. If only DW4 had a few more seconds...

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"It is not part of a true culture to tame tigers any more than it is to make sheep ferocious."
--Henry David Thoreau


Re: Call me greedy, but I kept thinking about the year before...


Jan 7, 2022, 11:43 AM

Not exactly. We scored a very late td to make it close. Then 'Bammer recovered an onside kick (which we failed to do earlier). Game over.

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Re: Call me greedy, but I kept thinking about the year before...


Jan 7, 2022, 6:32 AM

Absolutely never count out DW4.

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"It is not part of a true culture to tame tigers any more than it is to make sheep ferocious."
--Henry David Thoreau


I think they cancel each other out........

[1]
Jan 7, 2022, 8:47 AM

I thought we "coulda/woulda/shoulda" won in 2015 and Bama "coulda/woulda/shoulda" won in 2016. In the end each team got their championship...............it worked itself out.

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I kinda sorta agree with you except...


Jan 8, 2022, 12:49 AM

the fact we stormed back from 14-0 in 2016 proved we were the better team, IMO, because of DW4.

I also have a hunch if we had won in 2015, Alabama would have returned the favor the following year.

So, as you say, 1-1 was probably fair.

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Was there for both Bama beatdowns!***


Jan 6, 2022, 9:17 PM



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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?


Jan 6, 2022, 9:25 PM

Tiring and magical. Didn't get back to my buddy's house on Davis Island (with my two brothers and their wives) until 2:00 AM. Got up at 8:00 and started the drive back home. Remember passing the 'bama fans on I-75 with our tiger tail hanging out the back. Good times.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:34 PM

We stayed on Treasure Island & I couldn’t sleep after the game. My wife & I got got back to our condo at 2AM and we literally could not stop watching the ESPN highlights & local news coverage. I was exhausted, but stayed up reading various articles about the game.

It was a spontaneous trip, but worth it & one we’ll never forget. The ride home was tiresome but flying our Clemson flags riding past Bama fans felt glorious.

Go Tigers!

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 9:48 PM

Worked that day running my plant in Dallas.

Watched the game with family at a sports bar with the Dallas Clemson Club

Exciting game, great atmosphere withe all the Clemson family presnt

Then. Enjoyed some very nice Scotch

Will never forget that last drive and catch

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:17 PM

It was a great day. I was so proud we would beat them that day. If we win... we win. If we lose... we lose. I'm happy either way.
Go Tigers!!!! Fight, Fight Fight!!!!!!!!!!.

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"If a pig had a better personality, he would cease to be a filthy animal."


Pretty much what I do every day...


Jan 6, 2022, 10:18 PM

Played golf!!

Cateechee

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I guess when you don't go to the Nattys, it gives you a lot

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:31 PM

of disposable income for golf!

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It was pretty awesome.

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:23 PM

My dad and I drove down. We arrived in Tampa that afternoon. Stopped at Moe’s to get some pregame food. Tailgated outside the stadium. Walked in the stadium well before kickoff to take it all in.

It was freezing cold at the game. We weren’t prepared, but once the ball was spotted we didn’t care.

It was a back and forth game. I thought we were toast when Alabama drove down late in the fourth quarter to take the lead on a Jalen Hurts run.

Then we got the ball back. That last drive was full of great plays. It felt like we were being way too casual though. The clock kept running. Tick tick tick. HURRY UP! Oh man, we are going to run out of time. Deshaun to Renfrow! WE WIN! OH MY GOODNESS!

One of the best moments of my life. Amazing! I’ll never forget it.

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Re: I was parked at a plant in Elyria Ohio (west of Cleve)

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:29 PM

Had a delivery in the am, since we are regulars there and it was cold no foot traffic or anything, just me parked there in middle of nowhere watching it, tethered to a tablet I had set up in the bunk. Loosing my mind yelling when he caught it to seal it up. Went in next morning Clemson'd out and they knew it too cuz we had smashed their buckeyes prior, and I happened to deliver there the next week. However they were awesome about it and a lot of 'thank God it was you and not Bama winning again' gained some respect for some buckeye fans that day.

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I had to work 8 to 5. Was greeted in the morning by a

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:31 PM

co-worker that said, " I bet you're gonna be tighter than a bolt on a new bridge today." He was right. I worked all day and solidified a bet with two Bama fan co-workers that I would wear a crimson shirt the next day if we lost and they would wear orange if they lost. I had lived up to that bet the year before, the day after the game in Glendale and did wear a crimson shirt. Needless to say they both looked great in orange the next day after Tampa.

When I got off work, I went straight home and turned on all the talking heads. I also had a long conversation with my dad about the game and how to handle it if we lost again. A Georgia fan friend from out of state texted me about 6 p.m. with the following text, "Are you throwing up yet?" It was a very reasonable questions, but I had not. That's not to say that I hadn't come close.

The game was amazing. I was really stunned. After the game calling my parents in South Carolina and receiving congratulation texts from so many non-Clemson fan friends. I will say this, many Georgia fan friends texted me at that late hour to congratulate me. I live in Georgia so I know a lot. And if they win Monday night I will have enough class to text them a congratulations as well. I also received texts from some Clemson fan friends that were at the game and I texted them as well.

I sent a text GIF of a Tiger throwing punches and sent it to a wrong number. The person was in California. They replied, " I think you have the wrong number, but great text. I just watched the game. Congrats."

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I thought we beat Nebraska for the first Natty. ??

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 10:47 PM

Spent the day driving from Lakeland to Miami to enjoy the game and the onsite Tiger Tailgate Show.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[2]
Jan 6, 2022, 11:14 PM

Love this question. Remember the day surprisingly well given how much I had to drink. We stayed at a hotel night before with buddies, started early. I ate biscuits and gravy at the hotel restaurant, went and hit the grocery to get tailgate items we couldn’t get the night before. I remember getting to our parking lot and being told we were too early, cars were turning around. We went back and picked up more ice and a few others from the hotel and then waited in line to get back in. Got an okay spot with two other cars from our party and walked to get our tickets. I had my lanyard from the year before in Glendale. Debated whether I should buy a new one for new luck but decided against it.

I started with beer as I almost always do at tailgates for night games. Ate pork tenderloin sliders cooked over a charcoal grill for lunch. Switched over to sweet tea vodka APs and did a couple fireball shots. We left the tailgate late. The walk to the stadium was long, and really slow. Getting into the stadium was painful. Got in just before kickoff and sat in the temp stands on the blessed side of the stadium.

Great game. Remembered trying to stay buzzed but couldn’t, was really into the game and slowed on the beers as time wore on. We had a great view of some of the plays everyone remembers, Renfrow’s hustle tackle, Gallman go ahead TD. I remembered feeling incredibly nervous for Bama’s drive before our final one when Hurts broke that run to go up 31-28 and then looked up at that the clock and remember saying, left too much time. The rest you know. Legendary.

My favorite Clemson memory was being in the temp stands for Orange Crush. If you were there, hopefully it was like this for you. When Deshaun rolled out and we saw Renfrow was open, the entire stands (and for all we knew stadium and earth beneath) started rocking while the ball was in the air. When HR caught it - onions. I completely missed his casual ball toss to the ref and still love rewatching that on replay. Everything HR did, he did it like he’d been there before, all class, no ego. Love that guy. Was just an amazing game to be at, feel very grateful to have seen that one live.

We tailgated after the game until very late, we were among the only ones left in the parking lot by the time we packed up. It was cold, I was wet with beer and champagne being sprayed on me and the port a lets were in some kinda hellish condition. Wouldn’t trade that day/night for anything. One of my top 3 Clemson memories ever.

Post game footnote: when I got back to work on Wednesday, several friends and coworkers who watched the game on TV talked about how “rattled” DW4 was in the first half. While I remembered Bama pressuring him and it being a physical game I never once felt like he was rattled watching it live. I just felt like Bama’s defense was Fn good. When I watched the replay of the game it was a lesson in commentators’ influence on people watching at home. Herbstreit was pushing the “DW4 rattled” narrative and I then realized where my co-workers comments came from. Lesson: One man’s “rattled” is another man’s ball flip to the ref. It’s all relative. Go Tigers!

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 11:51 PM

My wife and I were visiting one of my sons and his family in TN, and I watched the game with my son. My other son, the Clemson grad, was at the game. I thought we would score to win with 2 minutes left but was a little discouraged that the slow pace killed the first minute. My confidence returned during the last minute, and I expected to win.

When HR caught the winning pass, my son took a photo of me just sitting there with my biggest smile ever. Two years later, my wife took a photo of me standing beside the TV with another big smile just as the game clock hit 00:00. I still have both photos.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?


Jan 6, 2022, 11:59 PM

Yessir! Those pics are keepers for sure. Great times and great memories with Clemson and family. What it’s all about right there. Go Tigers!!

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 11:40 PM

The college I attended at the time started the spring semester the Monday of the national championship game. I made sure my professors knew I wouldn’t be there the next day. I came home after class, and I remember getting ready for the game… the overall emotion, the suspense in the air. I watched the whole game with a group of people and some Clemson grads. I can remember being on edge on that last drive man. As soon as Hunter caught that ball, there was cheering at the top of our lungs and crying non-stop (I’m not going to lie to you). It was a surreal moment, and one I, along with many others, will cherish for the rest of my life.

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Grown man crying unashamedly! On the phone with my buds.

[1]
Jan 6, 2022, 11:49 PM

Screaming with each other We Won! Watched the celebration. Watched more of the highlights. Went to work with less than 3 hours of sleep.If that much. Hoarse and happy! Found it odd how my boss, Bama fan, was beyond pissed. Where as the year before he was congratulatory of Clemson at how hard we played. Guess he didn't really think "Lil Ol Clemson" would actuallly beat Bama. Felt pretty dang good!

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I can see me and my wife in this dudes video so that

[3]
Jan 7, 2022, 12:35 AM

Will tell you how awesome my day was.
https://youtu.be/qwfGE7fEI24

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"The one who thinks we can and the one who thinks we can't are both right! Which one are you, son? Which one are you, son?"


Very good question, as it reminds me of my daily ritual


Jan 7, 2022, 5:54 AM

trying to decide whether or not I'm hungry. That's because I can never remember if I've had breakfast!

Nevertheless, I probably...probably, I'm saying, worked that day, although I do recall gathering with friends to watch the game. Of course, as most others, I was completely stunned with the outcome. Still, Watson to Renfrow remains one of the greatest triumphs in our history, a play that I still enjoy rewatching occasionally.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?

[2]
Jan 7, 2022, 8:17 AM

I live in Greenville(SC). Our plan was to leave os Saturday morning but snow was predicted in the Upstate for Friday night. My son and I drove to Columbia and spent the night to mitigate risks. I made late hotel reservations, so Lakeland was as close as we could get to Tampa. We listened to the Clemson/Miami BB game while driving through Orlando on XM radio.

Sunday was a trip into Tampa to spend some time at FanFest and walk around. It was cold.

Saturday was a blur. Ate breakfast at a Chick-Fil-A and got Bama-shamed by some 20-year old. I was confident and said Clemson knows it can compete with Alabama and is playing to win. Arrived in our parking lot(grassy yard) that held 175 cars around 11:30. Walked around for an hour exploring the area before walking 3/4 mile to a Moe’s that wasn’t crowded, which turned out to be a good decision.

Walking back toward the stadium, I ran across several people selling tickets at $2400 each. There were VERY few for sale that day and they were pricey. We looked for friends for the next few hours and took lots of pictures. We had bought food for tailgating, so we headed back to the parking lot to eat around 5:00. We met lots of nice people in the lots but found out quickly there were thousands of Clemson people there that couldn’t find tickets. 30+ from our lot watched the game from the parking lot and listened to the roar from the stadium.

Obviously, we had a blast at the game. Took lots of pics after the game and stayed in the stadium as long as we could. Got back to our hotel room around 2:30, knowing we had a 9-hour drive home on Tuesday.

The best part about the trip was that I went with my son. Both are Clemson graduates and we cried like babies after the N.C. win. The trip is a memory I’ll never forget.

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My first daughter had just been born and we just got to take

[1]
Jan 7, 2022, 9:11 AM

her home from the hospital. She fell asleep in my arms, and I had to contain myself from cheering so loudly and scaring her. I put her down to bed and anytime a great play happened, I'd run out on the porch to yell and celebrate. After HR made the game winning catch, I ran around dancing and went outside to yell on the porch again. This time several neighbors were out on their porches cheering as well and yelling Go Tigers! My wife still laughs about it to this day.

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One of the most perfect days of my life (long)

[2]
Jan 7, 2022, 9:28 AM

1) Went out to breakfast with my son and daughter in Treasure Island. A cool little spot, and I am not kidding, when we walked in, "Sweet Home Alabama" was playing on the speakers...pure coincidence
2) Went tailgate shopping with my brother in law
3) Went to Raymond James, to the best tailgate spot I have ever had. Near the stadium, and adjacent to an end cap. Had friends and relatives coming by all day, and the weather WAS perfect. Football weather!
4) Wandered around a little, saw Sammy Watkins and Larry the Dr. Pepper guy, and a few more friends.
5) Only slight negative was I tailgated too long, and failed to account for the mob entering the game. Missed out on a little of the pregame. Mt brother in law and his two kids were in the Bama endzone, which is where two of my three tickets were. My third ticket, though (bought from a former player), was on the Clemson sideline, about the 35, and maybe 12 rows off the field. There were numerous former players on the sideline about 40 feet from us. I sat in that seat for a little while, then texted my son, who was 16 then, and had him switch seats with me.
6) I sat with my nephew in the endzone, my brother in law was a couple of rows behind us, and my daughter and niece (14 and 12 at the time) sat about 25 seats to our left. A female Alabama fan in her 50s was right next to them, and took them under her wing. NO ONE screwed with them for fear of Mama Elephant! We went through all of the emotions, trailing early, fighting to the lead, then Hurts scored right in front of us. I turned to my nephew and said "they left us too much time". I was right!
7) Immediately after the game ended, my first concern was getting to my daughter. I looked around, and all of the Bama fans were GONE! Snapped a selfie with my daughter, still one of my favorite photos, with the celebration going on in the background. I was only sad that the winning TD happened at the opposite end of the field.
8) We went back to the parking lot, tailgated some more, and then mae the drive back to Treasure Island. I couldn't calm down enough to sleep until 3 or 4AM.

A day I will never forget! Thanks for asking. Happy memories. Go Tigers!

Footnote: My son is now a Clemson grad, and my daughter is a freshman.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?


Jan 7, 2022, 11:11 PM

Thank you to everyone who responded. I really enjoyed reading the stories.

If I had to have a theme song to characterize the day, it would be “ In the Air Tonight” by Phil Collins.

Seems like we could all feel it coming that night.

Thanks again

Go Tigers! ?????

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There are no words....


Jan 8, 2022, 12:31 AM

I was at the game with my sister. We were sitting on the very top row at about the 10 yard line and it was freezing cold. Who cared? The touchdown happened right below us. I have often told people every emotion I've ever had in my body came pouring out all at once...Laughing, crying, jubilation, unbelievable, hugging everyone in sight, old men crying like babies........still I don't have the words to describe, there are no words to describe it. I can sit and think about it and most of that can overtake my whole being again. Once in a lifetime, for sure.

When the day comes in 30 or 40 years when they put me in the ground, I want the clip of the last drive shown at my funeral. I don't care about any old hymns sung, I want something that made me feel good and this was it....And right after, the alma mater and then Tiger Rag.

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Surreal feeling


Jan 8, 2022, 8:13 AM

We were at the game tailgating early a few spots over from Deshaun’s mom, aunts, uncles and siblings. We invited them over to our tailgate spot and talked to them at theirs. A group of us didn’t go into the game and watched on the TV’s at our tailgate. There was a delay on the TV broadcast but we could hear a big roar in the stadium on that last 4 to 13 winning touchdown. We didn’t know if the roar was coming from Clemson or Bama fans.
It was a scary 10-15 seconds watching to see what happened. We were jumping around and screaming. It was so exciting and we had waited so long for this. The next championship 2 years later was great but the one in 2016 will always mean the most to me.

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Re: What was your day like when we won the first Natty against Alabama?


Jan 8, 2022, 8:16 AM

Drinking

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