Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19


by - Senior Writer -
Could Clemson fans have the chance to tailgate at Virginia Tech this season?
Could Clemson fans have the chance to tailgate at Virginia Tech this season?

We just want football.

Wednesday was one of those typical summer days in Clemson, the kind we’ve all seen and love, and as the thermometer trended towards triple digits, I took my young son Eli (22 months) out for a walk to help burn off some of his excess energy. We walked down the hill towards Death Valley, past Press Road (the area behind the press box) and down towards Howard’s Rock and The Hill.

I stopped for a second because Clemson’s campus has, for the most part, been a ghost town for the majority of the past three months. There are days we walk the campus and only see the occasional maintenance person. Tuesday and Wednesday were different because it’s apparent the campus is once again beginning to draw people.

We reached the bottom of the hill in front of the gate, and an entire family from New York piled out of a van and started taking pictures and it was obvious from their conversations that this was just a side trip – on the way to somewhere else – for the patriarch of the family.

It wasn’t long before others showed up – sometimes in groups of two or three, sometimes alone, sometimes entire families – and as I watched Eli run around under the shade of the trees, a man looked over at me and said, “Man, I sure hope we have football this season. I need sports, but I really want some Clemson football.” I nodded, and then he asked if I worked for the school. I told him no, that my wife works for Clemson, but that she was working hard to make sure students can come back to campus.

Two more cars showed up, and two families rushed excitedly to the gates. There were three little boys – all dressed in Clemson gear – and the dads were wearing Clemson hats. They spent a half hour or more wandering outside the stadium and taking pictures, and I sat there smiling because it’s obvious we all want this to happen.

The good news is that everything I am hearing is pointing toward us having a season. Perhaps with a delayed start, almost definitely with limited numbers of fans in the stands, but the Atlantic Coast Conference is working to put a plan in place so they can make a decision over the next few weeks.

Our buddy David Teel at the Richmond Times-Dispatch has covered the ACC for what seems like eons, and he’s as dialed in as anyone when it comes to the conference. He wrote a piece Wednesday that suggested the ACC is looking at scheduling pods for the upcoming season.

Teel wrote this in his story:

One proposal league athletic directors are considering is dividing the ACC’s 15 schools — traditional football independent and partial conference member Notre Dame would be included — into three geographic pods of five. Teams would play each pod rival twice, accounting for eight games.

The aim then would be, in concert with the Southeastern Conference, to add a ninth, and hopefully 10th, contest for each school, preserving the four annual ACC-SEC in-state rivalries: Clemson-South Carolina, Florida State-Florida, Georgia Tech-Georgia and Louisville-Kentucky.

Teel then laid out these three options for the pod idea:

Option No. 1

Pod A: Miami, Florida State, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Duke.

Pod B: Virginia Tech, Virginia, Clemson, N.C. State, Wake Forest.

Pod C: Syracuse, Boston College, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Notre Dame.

Option No. 2

Pod A: Miami, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Virginia Tech.

Pod B: North Carolina, N.C. State, Duke, Wake Forest, Virginia.

Pod C: Syracuse, Boston College, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Notre Dame.

Option No. 3

Pod A: Miami, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Louisville.

Pod B: North Carolina, N.C. State, Duke, Wake Forest, Virginia.

Pod C: Syracuse, Boston College, Pittsburgh, Notre Dame, Virginia Tech.

As someone who covers Clemson, I like the idea of Clemson playing Virginia Tech if only for the chance to make a trip to Blacksburg in the fall. Virginia was already on the schedule, as were NC State and Wake Forest, so Option No. 1 is intriguing.

The other options have their pros and cons, but nothing is ideal as everyone deals with COVID-19 and the implications for a season. Pods are not ideal – heck we all want the regular schedule and 12 games and what we’re used to – but ideal flew out the window a long time ago.

But we still want to play. Just hang around Death Valley and you’ll see.

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Subject (Replies: 29) Author
spacer TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
TigerNet News
spacer Eff that noise, I say no thanks.
GWPTiger®
spacer We already have two pods.
1994CUTIGER®
spacer yeah let's do it
Willmo®
spacer I like it, but see no way of having a full football season.
ATL PAW MAN®
spacer Many questions... ND, ACCCG, Pod Setup
quadtiger
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
grrowl
spacer Notre Dame
Fluxus
spacer Re: Notre Dame
Valley Boy
spacer Without the ACC....who they gonna play this year?
gotigers37®
spacer Re: Notre Dame
donb
spacer Right! I used to be for the carrot approach to Notre Dame,
Clemson81to85
spacer Lets add Army and have 4 4-team pods, then a 4-team ACC...
bparris74
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
123me
spacer Of one thing you can be certain......
ALLweatherfan®
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
Valley Boy
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
grrowl
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
Smack Daddy
spacer This will be a first
under11par®
spacer Time for ND to poop or get off the pot. Can't include them
Lakedude®
spacer Should be a complete non-starter.
Clemson81to85
spacer Pardon all the typos but I am posting on my phone, which I
Clemson81to85
spacer This is probably the stupidest thing I've ever read
Willmo®
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
tigerrag86
spacer Correct, and if the season is that far removed from a real
Clemson81to85
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
agent k
spacer What is the objective of pods?
cu1981fans
spacer Re: What is the objective of pods?
Dlc83
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
crash007
spacer Re: TNET: Bring on The Pods? Football in the age of COVID-19
85tiger2012®

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