ORLANDO - So much of the focus of Monday's Tangerine Bowl has been on how
Clemson's defense will match up with Texas Tech's offense.
But truth be told, the game very well could be decided by the opposite
matchup - how well Clemson's offense can maneuver against the Red Raiders'
Offensive coordinator Brad Scott compared Tech's defense to that of Virginia,
a unit which is designed to take away the big play and force opposing
offenses to make long, mistake-free drives in order to score. Clemson had
well over 400 yards of offense against the Cavaliers, yet couldn't put the
ball in the end zone when necessary.
Consequently, the Tigers lost the game.
Avoiding a repeat performance is foremost on Scott's mind.
"They try to compliment their offense," he said. "They try not to give up a
bunch of big plays, they don't play a lot of man coverage, and it's almost
like a philosophy of 'If we don't give up 30 points we'll win.' They'll try
to keep everything in front of them and see if you can execute 10 or 12 plays
without a turnover, without a penalty and without missing a few passes.
"One thing we're stressing with our team is taking advantage of our at-bats
and matching their scoring. If our defense gives us some turnovers, we've got
to take them and go down and score points. And I'm talking about touchdowns,
not field goals."
ESPN's Lee Corso, who will be in the broadcast booth calling Monday's game
along with partner's Mike Tirico and Kirk Herbstreit, said the Tangerine Bowl
could be the longest bowl game in history because of the styles of the teams
Told of the statement, Bowden didn't necessarily disagree.
"It could be a long game," he said. "The only thing about us, though our
formations are similar, we don't throw it as much as they do. They average
55, we average in the 30s. We could line up and throw it that much, and we
might have to in this game. If it looks like they're moving the ball and
scoring a lot and we have to throw to catch up, then it could be a long
- Clemson head coach Tommy Bowden, Tech head coach Mike Leach and players
from each team will take part in the official Tangerine Bowl press conference
Friday at 11 a.m.
Immediately following the press conference, both teams will be honored at the
official Bowl Luncheon.
- On Sunday, 10 players from each team will visit the Give Kids the World
Village. The players will distribute 100 gifts to the children during a
Sunday Ice Cream Social.
- A handful of players found out Thursday that not everything in Orlando is
fun and games.
For being late to a meeting here, or maybe missing curfew by a few minutes
there, nearly a dozen of them spent 20 minutes being put through extra
running and grass drills.