CLEMSON - The opportunity to play a nationally televised night game against Miami in a storied building such as the Orange Bowl has many advantages for a school such as Clemson.
Help in opening recruiting avenues in one of the nation's most talent-rich areas is just one that comes to mind.
Yet Tigers' head coach Tommy Bowden still has a bit of the old school in him. Part of him wishes Saturday's game was in the early afternoon.
"Football's made to get up Saturday morning, get ready and go play at 12 or 1 (p.m.)," he said following Thursday's practice. "That's just the way it's supposed to be. But these games, there's probably some people that like them."
And truth be told, Bowden can tolerate them.
National television games mean money for both the conference and the school, and it these times where bills can run high every dollar is important.
"That's the payoff, the TV contracts...to pay for everything," he said. "And then the recruiting."
The real nightmare comes from a logistical standpoint.
Not only does Bowden have 85 football players cooped up in a hotel for most of the day, itching to hit the field, but after the game he will hang around the Orange Bowl and film his weekly television show.
By the time the plane returns to the Upstate and he gets home, it's likely to be 5 a.m.
"That's rough," he said with a laugh. "Sunday school starts at 9 a.m."
- Wide receiver Chansi Stuckey, running back Duane Coleman and defensive end Gaines Adams all are listed as probable for Saturday and should play. The only scenario which would change their status would be if contact drills during pregame warmups Saturday caused further problems.
- Bowden has been to the Orange Bowl as a coach on a couple of different occasions, both as an assistant with his father at Florida State in the early 1980s.