Game Two: Clemson vs. Wofford
Saturday, Sept. 8, 2001
1:00 PM (EST)
Clemson Memorial Stadium (81,474)
In the Rankings
Clemson - #19 AP, #19 USA Today/ESPN
Wofford - #24 USA Today/ESPN (DI-AA), #25 The Sports Network
Radio: Clemson Tiger Sports Network
Play By Play: Jim Phillips * Color: Mike Eppley * Sideline: Rodney Williams
Series History: Clemson leads 9-3
Tickets: $25, Available
Clemson vs. Wofford Series
This is the 20th anniversary of the last time Clemson and Wofford
faced off on the gridiron. In 1981, Villanova dropped football in
April. Clemson administrators called on Wofford and they agreed to
come to Clemson for the season opener. Earlier this year, Tulane
decided against coming to Clemson for a regular season game at Death
Valley, forcing Clemson officials to look for a late addition to the
schedule. Wofford again came to Clemson's aid.
Clemson went on to win the National Championship in 1981, so Tiger
fans are hoping this schedule change is a foreshadowing of success to
come. Wofford, then an NAIA school, did not go quietly 20 years ago.
In fact, the Terriers held a 3-0 lead at the end of the first
quarter. Clemson went on to a 45-10 victory, but the Terriers would
end the game with 293 yards of total offense, including 201 in the
first half. Only two other teams had more total offense than Wofford
against Clemson's defense, which allowed just 8.2 points a game that
Current Wofford offensive coordinator Wade Lang led the Wofford ball
carriers that day with 76 yards on 17 attempts. He also completed two
passes for 30 yards. Wofford scored a touchdown in the fourth period
and that would be the only touchdown Clemson would yield over the
first 22 quarters of the season. Current Terriers Head Coach Mike
Ayers was an assistant coach on Wofford's staff the last time the two
Clemson holds a 9-3 advantage in the series that dates to 1896, the
first year of Clemson football. The Tigers won that game, 16-0 in
Spartanburg in what was just the third game in Clemson football
history. Clemson won the second meeting in the series by a 21-0 score
in 1900, the second game in the head coaching career of John Heisman.
Clemson also shutout Wofford in 1940, 26-0, in what was the second
game in the Clemson coaching career of the legendary Frank Howard.
Now, this year's game is the second game in the third year of Tommy
Bowden's Clemson coaching career.
Wofford's last win in the series took place in 1933, a 14-13 Terrier
win in Spartanburg. Wofford won consecutive games by shutout over the
Tigers in 1925 and 1926.
The Tigers have won 35 games in a row over Southern Conference
schools dating to a 6-0 loss to South Carolina in 1952. Clemson has
won 45 in a row over teams currently in the Southern Conference,
including 12 of the last 14 by shutout.
Similar Styles at Quarterback
If you like multi-faceted quarterbacks you have come to the right
place. Much was made about Woodrow Dantzler's pursuit of a 2,000-yard
passing, 1,000-yard rushing season in 2000. He finished the year with
1,028 rushing and 1,871 through the air.
But, Wofford's Travis Wilson, a senior from Newberry, SC also could
challenge that plateau this year. A year ago he quarterbacked Wofford
to a 7-4 record by rushing for 779 and passing for 1,202 yards. For
his career, he has 2,069 yards on the ground, ahead of Dantzler's
1,746. He has 3,039 career passing yards, giving him 5,000 career
yards of total offense.
This is believed to be the first time in the history of Death Valley
that two quarterbacks with more than 5,000 yards of total offense
will do battle in Clemson Memorial Stadium. Wilson already owns the
top two total offense figures in Wofford history on a single season
basis. His 5,108 career yards of total offense are second only to the
7,067 recorded by Shawn Graves between 1989-92.
Facts on the Wofford Terriers
* This is the seventh season of Division I-AA football for Wofford.
Head Coach Mike Ayers has been the leader of the program since 1988.
* Wofford has a student enrollment of 1,100 students, the smallest
enrollment for any I-A or I-AA school.
* Wofford had six Academic All-District team members last year, more
than any other school.
* Head Coach Mike Ayers has 77 career victories, tied for first in
school history with Conley Snidow (1953-66). He was named Southern
Conference Coach of the Year in 2000.
* More than 70,000 fans are expected at today's game, making it the
largest crowd Wofford has ever played before. The previous high was
60,000 set the last time the two teams met at Clemson in 1981.
* Wofford owns a victory over a Division I-A team. Last year the
Terriers upset Louisiana-Monroe, 24-6 for its first ever Division I-A
* Clemson has never had a player gain 100 yards rushing and 100
receiving in the same game, but Wofford has. Last year against
Western Carolina, Jesse McCoy had 115 yards receiving and 114 rushing
in a Wofford victory.
* This will be a battle of teams that like to run. Wofford was
seventh in the nation in rushing at the Division I-AA level in 2000,
while the Tigers were 10th in rushing in Division I-A.
* Wofford has just as much a national recruiting influence as
Clemson. Eleven states are represented on the Wofford roster,
including 10 players from Ohio.
* Wofford secondary coach Terry Lantz does not need to search for
advice when it comes to coaching against Clemson. His father, Rick
Lantz, coached against the Tigers as defensive coordinator at
Virginia for many years, including last season.
Tigers Hope for 2-0 Start
Clemson is looking for a 2-0 start to the regular season for the
second year in a row and the third time in five years. But, over the
last 30 years, gaining a 2-0 start has been hard to come by for
Clemson. Clemson is just 11-18-1 in the second game of the season
over the last 30 years. Clemson has been 2-0 just eight times in the
last 30 years.
In recent years Clemson has not gotten off to a great start, yet has
been resilient, making improvement over the course of the season.
Clemson has been to a bowl game 17 of the last 24 seasons, yet has
been 2-0 just five times in that era. Clemson had a 12-0 season in
1981 of course, and was 6-0 to start 1987. Clemson was 2-0 in 1997
and jumped to an 8-0 start last year. Clemson was also 2-0 to open
the 1991 season.
Clemson in Top 20 for 20 Straight Polls
Clemson is ranked in the top 20 in the nation in the latest
Associated Press poll. The Tigers have been ranked in the top 20 in
all three polls so far this year and for 20 consecutive polls over
the last two years. This is the second longest streak of consecutive
weeks ranked in the top 20 in the AP poll in Clemson history. The
record for consecutive top 20 rankings is 41, set between the final
poll of the 1986 season and the Oct. 10, 1989 poll. The Tigers were
ranked between third and 17th in the nation in all 41 or those polls.
The record for consecutive weeks in the top 25 is 50 in a row between
Oct. 24, 1989 and October 19, 1992. The Tigers were ranked between 6
and 25 during that streak. Clemson was ranked between 21-25 in six of
those 50 weeks. Clemson has had two other streaks of 14 weeks or more
ranked in the top 20. One took place from Sept. 21, 1981 through
Sept. 13, 1982, a 15-week streak, while the other took place between
Oct. 12, 1959 and Oct. 10, 1960, a 14-week streak.
Coaching Offspring Scores Winning Touchdown
When Jeff Scott ran 22 yards for a touchdown on a fake field goal
against Central Florida last week, one Clemson assistant coach was
very proud. Assistant Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator Brad Scott
must have been beaming from his seat in the coaches booth as Scott
scored his first collegiate touchdown on the play. It gave Clemson a
21-7 lead and proved to be the winning touchdown.
Both Scotts can take credit for the play. Jeff, a true coach's son,
watched film of Central Florida's special teams over the summer and
pointed out to his father that the fake field goal might work. Brad
and Ron West are in charge of the field goal team and they worked on
the play in the preseason. The coaches felt the time was ripe when
Clemson lined up for a 29-yard field goal with 11 minutes left in the
It certainly worked as Scott ran the play with the option to pitch
the ball, but ran through a large hole on the right side of Central
Florida's line. He dove the last few yards into the endzone for the
score. It marked the third time Scott had run with the ball out of a
fake field goal in his 13 games as a Tiger. He now has three rushes
for 40 yards.
So, has a coach's son ever scored a touchdown for the Tigers before?
You have to go back 38 years to the Clemson vs. South Carolina game
in Columbia on November 28, 1963. Jimmy Howard, son of Clemson
legendary Head Coach Frank Howard, scored on a seven-yard run, the
Tigers first touchdown of the day, in a 24-20 Clemson victory.
Howard, a reserve running back for the Tigers from 1961-63, had four
rushes for 20 yards that day. Howard ended his career with two
touchdowns, as he had scored earlier in the 1963 season against
Two other assistant coaches in the last 15 years have had their sons
play for the Tigers during their coaching career in Clemson. J.C.
Harper, son of Clemson defensive coordinator Tom Harper, played for
the Tigers between 1985-88, while Les Herrin's son Deke played for
the Tigers as a walk-on wide receiver in 1998. Neither scored a
touchdown in their Clemson careers.
One former Clemson coach's son who did not play for the Tigers, but
has gone on to NFL fame is Brandon Stokley. Nelson Stokley served as
an assistant for the Tigers from 1980-85 and a young Brandon could be
seen at Clemson practices now and then throwing the football with his
father. Nelson then became the head coach at SW Louisiana and Brandon
played there for his father and became one of the top receivers in
the nation. He now plays with the Baltimore Ravens and caught a
touchdown pass in last year's Super Bowl.
Dantzler Moving up Career Charts
Woodrow Dantzler completed 15 of 25 passes for 154 yards and a
touchdown in the season opener. He also contributed 46 yards on the
ground, giving him a 200-yard total offense day to open the season,
the 10th time in the last 13 games he has done that. He had one
touchdown rushing and one throwing, giving him 39 career touchdowns
rushing and passing.
Dantzler continues to move up on the school's all-time lists. The 39
touchdowns rushing and passing rank in a tie for fourth best in
Clemson history in terms of touchdown responsibility. He is tied with
Ray Matthews, who had 20 rushing, 11 passing and eight other
touchdowns via returns or receiving. Teammate Travis Zachery is now
third with 40 touchdowns (33 rushing and seven receiving). The
all-time leader is Steve Fuller, who had 22 touchdowns rushing and 22
passing in his career that spanned 1975-78. Nealon Greene, now in the
Canadian Football League and a teammate of Dantzler in 1997, had 43.
Dantzler also ranks in the top six in Clemson history in a number of
other categories. He is currently sixth in passing yardage with 3613
and needs just 34 yards passing against Wofford to move into fifth
place ahead of Homer Jordan's 3643.
Dantzler is fourth in career total offense with 5,359 yards and needs
just 152 yards to move into third place ahead of Rodney Williams.
Williams will get to see Dantzler move ahead of him from close range,
as the 1989 Clemson graduate, who led the Tigers to a record 32 wins,
is the sideline reporter for the Clemson Radio Network. Clemson's
career total offense leader is Nealon Greene with 6786, a number that
is definitely in range for Dantzler.
Heisman Candidate Woodrow Dantzler
Clemson quarterback Woodrow Dantzler has been omni present on many of
the preseason Heisman Trophy lists. The Clemson graduate is ranked as
the number-two candidate for the award by CBS.Sportsline.com, Lindy's
preseason annual, and Mel Kiper of ESPN. He is ranked eighth by The
Sporting News. He is also listed by USA Today as a candidate. That
publication listed 10 players in alphabetical order. He was also one
of six favorites mentioned by ESPN's GameDay program.
Dantzler was also listed as the first- team preseason All-America
quarterback by Football News and Lindy's. Lindy's lists Dantzler as
the top candidate for the Davey O'Brien Award and the Davey O'Brien
Award. Lindy's and Street & Smith rank Dantzler as the number-one
preseason candidate for ACC Player of the Year, while Sporting News
lists him as the preseason Offensive Player of the Year.
Zachery Goes over 2,500
For the second straight year, Travis Zachery opened the regular
season having to prove himself after suffering a painful injury in a
bowl game. The Doak Walker Award candidate suffered a broken ankle on
a 23-yard scoring reception from Woodrow Dantzler in the Gator Bowl
against Virginia Tech and that kept him out of the rest of the game
and spring practice.
He proved that he is back to full strength, leading Clemson in
rushing with 48 yards and in receptions with five for 41 in the
season opener against UCF. He scored a touchdown on a pass reception
from Woodrow Dantzler, his 40th career touchdown and his seventh
receiving. He now has 35 touchdowns in his last 25 games.
Zachery enters the Wofford game with 2,530 career rushing yards,
fifth best in school history. The greatest receiving running back in
Clemson history, he has a record 65 career catches for 684 yards. He
has 3,490 all-purpose running yards in his career, second best in
Zachery probably won't catch Raymond Priester when it comes to the
career rushing record (he needs 1,436), but he will have a good
chance to catch Priester in all-purpose yards. Priester had 4,282
all-purpose yards (rushing, receiving and kick returns combined),
just 790 yards ahead of Zachery. Zachery has had at least 997
all-purpose yards in each of his first three years at Clemson.
Mance Top Tackler, Kickoff Return Leader
Brian Mance was Clemson's top tackler in the season opener with 10
tackles. It marked the first time since a loss to Wake Forest in 1993
that a cornerback led Clemson in tackles. Andre Humphrey led the
Tigers in tackles that day with 10.
Mance's performance marked the second straight game a defensive back
had led the Tigers in tackles. Charles Hafley had a career high 14
tackles against Virginia Tech in the Gator Bowl.
Mance, a junior from Alcolu, SC and Manning High School, was also a
strong contributor on special teams in the return game. He had three
kickoff returns for 98 yards and two punt returns for 21 yards. That
gave him 119 all-purpose running yards for five touches, a 23.8
average. His 53-yard kickoff return in the second quarter set up a
Making big plays has been common in Mance's Clemson career. For his
career he now has 255 yards on nine kickoff returns, 72 yards on
three interception returns and 213 yards on eight punt returns. That
totals to 540 return yards for the 20 returns, or an incredible 27
yards every time he touches the ball. He leads the ACC in kickoff
returns after one game. His top return last year was an 88-yard punt
return against Georgia Tech.
Kopp, Special Teams Outstanding to Open Season
In addition to Brian Mance's return efforts, Clemson also had an
outstanding performance from punter Wynn Kopp in the opening win over
UCF. The transfer from Georgia posted a 43.8 yards per punt average.
He had 263 yards on six punts and allowed just 19 yards on three
returns. That computes to a 40.7 net punting average.
How good is a 40.7 net punting average? For the course of a season,
Chris Gardocki, an All-Pro with the Cleveland Browns, never had a net
punting average over 39.4 for the course of a season in his Clemson
career. The last Tiger to have a net punting average over 40 yards
was Dale Hatcher, who had a 42.4 net punting average in 1984.
Kopp's best punt of the day might have been his shortest. In the
fourth quarter, he fielded a bouncing snap, and under duress punted
the ball down field to get the Tigers out of trouble. The punt rolled
dead 32 yards down field instead of giving UCF the ball just 15 yards
from Clemson's goal line.
Five First-Year Freshmen Played in Opener
Clemson played five first-year freshmen in the season opener against
UCF. The list included three receivers in Roscoe Crosby, Airese
Currie and tight end Ben Hall. On defense, Moe Fountain and Eric
Sampson were first-year freshmen that saw action.
Crosby started the game, the first first-year freshman to start at
wide receiver in the season opener 1944 when Arthur Hagan started
every game as a first-year freshmen. That was during WWII when the
United States Armed Services drafted most of Clemson's upperclassmen.
It didn't take Crosby much time to have an impact. He caught a Utah
pass from quarterback Woodrow Dantzler on the first play of the
season and he turned it into a 12-yard gain. He also caught 33-yard
pass for Clemson's longest play of the day from scrimmage. Crosby
finished the day with three catches for 64 yards. The yardage total
led the Tigers against UCF. Hall also made his first career catch in
Clemson Defense Stands out vs. UCF
According to many of the preseason magazines, Clemson's "weakest
link" was supposed to be an inexperienced defense. The Tigers
returned just four starters from last year's 9-3 team. Four defensive
players made their first start against Central Florida and two others
were making just their second career start. Another was making just
his fourth career start.
But, the Tigers held the Golden Knights to but 13 points, 31 yards
rushing and 328 yards of total offense in recording a 21-13 victory.
In 2000, Central Florida averaged 30 points and 373 yards per game in
John Leake led the first-time starters with nine tackles in 51 plays
from his star safety position. The first-year sophomore has been a
bright spot in the preseason. He had three quarterback pressures and
a caused fumble to go with his nine tackles. Eric Meekins was another
first-time starter who had a strong game. The strong safety had seven
tackles in his 53 plays.
The Clemson defense was hard hitting with five caused fumbles,
including two by Braxton K. Williams. He became the first Clemson
defensive player to record two caused fumbles in the same game since
1996 when Tony DeSue had two against N.C. State.
It was a balanced performance for the Tiger defense. Six different
players had a tackle for loss, eight different players were credited
with a quarterback pressure and four different players had a caused
Leake Defender to Watch
Coach Tommy Bowden spoke in the preseason about players who needed to
step up their play on defense to make the Tigers successful in 2001.
The Tigers lost seven defensive starters from last year so many 2000
reserves have an opportunity to make a difference.
One of the players who is taking advantage of an opportunity is star
safety John Leake. The sophomore from Plano, TX is now starting at
the star safety position. Defensive Coordinator Reggie Herring said
he was Clemson's top defensive player in the first two weeks of the
preseason work. He was the team's top tackler in both major
scrimmages. He also had a team best three sacks. "His motor runs
nonstop," said Bowden. "He reminds you of Keith Adams the way he
practices and plays all over the field."
Leake did not play a single play from scrimmage last year, but was a
top special teams tackler with nine stops. He then had a breakout
spring, highlighted by a 10-tackle effort in the spring game, a total
that led all tacklers. He also had a 57-yard interception return for
He was Clemson's second leading tackler in the first game of the
season against UCF with nine tackles.
Carson Moves into Top 10 in Career Tackles
Clemson Butkus Award candidate Chad Carson had seven tackles in the
opener against UCF and moved into the top 10 in Clemson history in
career tackles. He now has 318 as a Tiger, and moved ahead of Doug
Brewster (312), Jim Stuckey (314) and Henry Walls (316) in the game.
Carson, who is applying for a Rhodes Scholarship and is a two-time
Academic All-American, has had at least 10 tackles in 19 of his last
25 games. He ranked fourth in the nation in tackles per game last
year with 13.3 per game.
2000 NCAA Tackle Leaders
Rk Player, School GP Tot /Game
1. Levar Fisher, Jr. N.C. State 11 163 14.82
2. Tito Rodriguez, Jr. UCF 9 121 13.44
3. Brian Leigeb, Sr. Cenl Michigan 11 147 13.36
4. Chad Carson, Jr. Clemson 11 146 13.27
5. Lawrence Flugence, So. Texas Tech 12 156 13.00
6. Dan Morgan, Sr. Miami (FL) 11 138 12.55
Keith Adams, Jr. Clemson 11 138 12.55
8. Levar Talley, Sr. Temple 11 135 12.27
9. Mario Haggan, So. Mississippi St. 11 132 12.00
10. Brandon Spoon, Sr. North Carolina 11 131 11.91
Regular Season statistics only
Clemson Career Tackle Leaders
Rk Player, Pos Years No
1. Bubba Brown, LB 1976-79 515
2. Anthony Simmons, LB 1995-97 486
3. Jeff Davis, LB 1978-81 469
4. Ed McDaniel, LB 1988-91 489
5. Randy Scott, LB 1975-78 382
6. Keith Adams, LB 1998-00 379
7. Robert Carswell, FS 1997-00 374
8. Tim Jones, LB 1991-94 338
9. Henry Walls, LB 1983-85 316
10. Jim Stuckey, DT 1976-79 314
11. Doug Brewster, LB 1987-90 312
12. Chad Carson, LB 1998-01 311
Seven Graduate Students to Start for Tigers
Clemson has seven graduate students slated to hold starting positions
for today's game with Wofford. That is an all-time record for
graduate students on the Clemson football team.
The list is led by Heisman Trophy candidate Woodrow Dantzler, who
received his degree in marketing from Clemson in August. Dantzler
hugged Clemson President Jim Barker when he was presented his diploma
on the stage at Littlejohn Coliseum.
Starting defensive back Charles Hafley and starting defensive tackle
Nick Eason both earned their degrees in sociology that same day.
Eason's graduation was especially impressive because he still has two
years of eligibility. He earned the degree in three years and three
summer sessions and plans to earn a Master's degree before his
eligibility is up. He is the first Clemson football player to earn an
undergraduate degree with two years of eligibility remaining.
Four other Clemson players received their degrees prior to this past
August, and all four of them are starters on offense. Kyle Young,
starting center, and T.J. Watkins, starting guard, earned their
degrees in May. Young graduated Summa Cum Laude and is a two-time
first-team Academic All-American. Wide receiver Matt Bailey also
received his degree that day. Starting offensive guard Will Merritt
received his degree in December of 2000, just a few days prior to the
Young Looks for Landmark Accomplishment
Clemson center Kyle Young has been named a first-team Academic
All-American each of the last two years. If he is chosen for a third
time at the end of the 2001 season he will become just the second
offensive lineman in college football history to be chosen a
first-team Academic All-American in three different seasons. He would
also become just the second ACC player in history to be chosen three
The College Sports Information Directors of America have chosen the
academic All-America team every year since 1952, so the 2001 team
will be the 50th team selected. Players chosen to the team must have
at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA. Young had a 3.98 career GPA and
graduated in May, Summa Cum Laude.
Young will try to join former Colorado offensive lineman Jim Hansen
as the only three-time first-team selections. Hansen was named in
1990, 1991 and 1992. The only other ACC player to be a three-time
first-team selection, regardless of position, is Mike Diminick, a
defensive back from Duke, who was named first team in 1986, 1987 and
Overall, 12 different football players have been named first-team
academic All-American three times. Clemson's Kyle Young will attempt
to join that group in 2001.
Three-Time First-Team Academic All-Americans
Name Pos. School Years
Jon Abbott LB Arizona 1975-77
Ron Duncan TE Ball State 1985-87
Jim Hansen OL Colorado 1990-92
Mike Diminick DB Duke 1986-88
Dan Gregus DL Illinois 1980-82
David Patterson WR New Mexico State 1996-98
Joe Heap B Notre Dame 1952-54
John Bergren DL Stanford 1981-83
Scott Henderson LB Texas 1968-70
Kip Corrington DB Texas A&M 1985-87
Jason Hanson PK Washington St. 1989-91
Don Davey DL Wisconsin 1987-90