Clemson vs South Carolina game notes


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Game 12: Clemson at South Carolina

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Kickoff: 12:02

Williams Brice Stadium (80,250)

Live Television: ESPN

Announcers: Bob Wischusen, Brian Griese

CSS Replay: 7:00 PM on Tuesday nights

Clemson Radio Network

Announcers: Pete Yanity, Will Merritt, Patrick Sapp

Series History:

Clemson leads 65-37-4

at South Carolina: Clemson leads 49-29-3

at Clemson : 16-8-1

Last Meeting: Clemson 31-14 at Clemson, 2008

Last South Carolina Win: 31-28 at Clemson, 2006

Last USC win at USC: 20-15 in 2001

Streaks: Clemson won two in row, 6 of 7, 10 of 12 Clemson won 9 of 10 in Columbia.



Clemson Rankings


Clemson is ranked 15th by AP and 16th by USA Today in the major polls. The Tigers are also 17th by the Harris Interactive poll and 18th in the BCS poll As far as computer polls are concerned, Clemson is 12th by the Sagarin poll.

Clemson is also 19th in both basketball polls, so the Tigers are in the top 20 in both polls in college football and college basketball. Clemson, Ohio State and Texas are the only schools in the nation in the top 20 in both sports


Swinney Second in Wins among First-year Coaches


Clemson has an 8-3 record under first-year head coach Dabo Swinney. That is second nationally in wins among coaches in their first year with a program. It is also second among head coaches in their first full season as head coach at the college level. Only Chip Kelly of Oregon is better with a 9-2 record. It is his first year as a head coach at any level on college as well. Frank Spaziani of Boston College and Gene Chizik of Auburn are tied for third with seven wins apiece.


Milestones in Range, Streaks


*CJ Spiller needs one kickoff return touchdown to establish an all-time NCAA record. Spiller, former Southern California All-American Anthony Davis (1972-74) and Ashlan Davis of Tulsa (2004-05) all have six.


•CJ Spiller needs three touchdowns to tie the Clemson single season record. He has 15 and record is 18 by Travis Zachery in 2000.

•Spiller needs 26 all-purpose yards to become the fifth player in NCAA history to reach 7000 for a career.

•DeAndre McDaniel needs one interception to establish the Clemson season record for interceptions. He has eight and is the co-holder of the record at the moment.

•Jacoby Ford has caught at least one pass in 25 consecutive games he has played.

•Saturday will mark Chris Chancellor’s 38th consecutive start at cornerback. It will be Crezdon Butler’s 36th consecutive start at the opposite cornerback.

•Crezdon Butler needs 33 interception return yards to become Clemson’s career leader.

•Thomas Austin has started 33 straight games in the offensive line.

•Kevin Alexander, Crezdon Butler, Chris Chancellor, and Kavell Connor will play their 51st career games this weekend at South Carolina and tie the Clemson record for most games played in a career. These seniors have never missed a game.


Spiller Named Finalist for Doak Walker Award


Clemson running back C.J. Spiller has been named a finalist for the 2009 Doak Walker Award. The award is presented each season to the top running back in the nation. Spiller is joined among by Mark Ingram of Alabama and Toby Gerhart of Stanford.

Spiller is third in the nation in all-purpose running yards this week with 188 yards per game. He established the ACC single season record for all-purpose running in the win over Virginia that clinched the ACC Atlantic Division title this past Saturday. He now has 2066 all-purpose yards this season, breaking the record of 2054 by Thomas Jones of Virginia in 1999.

Spiller is the only player in the nation with a touchdown in every game this year. He has scored 15 touchdowns altogether, seven rushing, four receiving, three on kickoff returns and one on a punt return. He has also thrown a touchdown pass. He has 894 yards rushing, 421 yards receiving, 543 yards on kickoff returns and 208 on punt returns.

Spiller is the first Clemson running back to be named a finalist for the Doak Walker Award. The last Clemson player to be named a finalist for any award is Gaines Adams, who was a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Award in 2006.


Clemson and South Carolina Meet for 101st Consecutive Year


•This will be meeting number-107 between Clemson and South Carolina and the 101st consecutive year the two schools have met. That is the third longest streak of consecutive years played in a rivalry in the nation. The only rivalries longer are Kansas vs. Nebraska at 104 games and Minnesota vs. Wisconsin at 102 games. Those games have already been played this year.

•The series dates to 1896 and the first year of football at Clemson, the fourth season for South Carolina. Clemson holds the advantage 65-37-4 since that first meeting in Columbia, a game won by South Carolina 12-6. Clemson’s first win took place the following year, an 18-6 victory in Columbia.

•Clemson has more wins over South Carolina than any other school and those victories represent over 10 percent of Clemson’s all-time victory total (640). When Clemson won in 2004 it was Clemson’s 600th all-time win.

•The two teams played in Columbia as part of Big Thursday every year until 1960. For the 57 Big Thursday games, Clemson had a 33-21-3 advantage. Since the teams have gone to a home and home schedule in 1960, Clemson has a 32-16-1 advantage. Clemson’s winning percentage is nearly identical home and away over that time. Clemson is 16-8-1 against South Carolina at home since 1960 and 16-8-0 in Columbia.

•Clemson won the last time the two teams met in Columbia, by a 23-21 score on a 35-yard field goal on the last play of the game by Mark Buchholz. Cullen Harper completed four passes for 70 yards, all to Aaron Kelly, on the game winning drive.

•Three of the last four meetings have been decided by five points or less. Between 2005-07 the margins went in descending order: Clemson won by four points (13-9) in Columbia in 2005, then South Carolina won by three points (31-28) in 2006 at Clemson, then Clemson won by a 23-21 score at South Carolina in 2007. That streak was broken last year when Clemson won by 17 (31-14) at Clemson.

•The Clemson and South Carolina seniors of 1965 experienced four consecutive games decided by four points or less and that is the only time it has happened in the history of the series. Clemson won in 1962 (20-17) and 1963 (24-20), then South Carolina won in 1964 (7-3) and 1965 (17-16). But, even those players did not play in all four games. In 1962 freshmen were not eligible, so those 1965 seniors didn’t even dress for the 1962 game.

•The Tigers have won six out of seven and 10 of 12. Clemson’s only loss since 2002 was at home to the Gamecocks in 2006.

•The visiting team won seven years in a row between 1991-97.

•This year’s Clemson senior class has a 2-1 record against South Carolina. Clemson classes who have beaten South Carolina four consecutive years were the seniors of 1900, 1919, 1930, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1983, 1991, 2000 and 2005. In 2005, Charlie Whitehurst became the only quarterback for either team in the series to start four victories.

•Clemson has an overall record of 49-29-3 in Columbia over the years, including a 30-17-2 mark in Williams-Brice Stadium. Clemson has been especially successful in Columbia since 1988. The Tigers are 9-1 in Columbia since then with the only loss coming in 2001, a game that started at noon. Clemson has not lost a night game in Columbia since 1987, winning night games in 1989, 1997, 2003, 2005 and 2007.

•This weekend’s game will be played on the Saturday after Thanksgiving for the fourth year in a row. Clemson has a 9-3 record against South Carolina when the game is played the Saturday after Thanksgiving or on Thanksgiving Day. The only game played on Thanksgiving was the 1963 contest that was moved from the Saturday before Thanksgiving to Thanksgiving due to the death of President John F. Kennedy.


Memorable Clemson Plays vs. South Carolina

1948 --Phil Prince blocked a punt and Oscar Thompson returned the ball for a touchdown that gave Clemson 13-7 win in Columbia and allowed Clemson to keep an undefeated season. The play took place with 4:15 left in the game.

1959--Harvey White connected with future Super Bowl Champion Bill Mathis for a 26-yard touchdown pass in the third period to put Clemson up 19-0 in the final Big Thursday game in Columbia. White completed 9-10 passes on the day and led the Tigers to the 27-0 victory.

1962--Don Chuy and Billy Weaver combined to sack Dan Reeves for a 13-yard loss with just 33 seconds left, preserving Clemson’s 20-17 victory. South Carolina had driven to the Clemson 25 for that last play.

1966--Harry Olszewski, an All-America offensive guard, picked off a fumbled snap in mid-air and ran 12-yards for a touchdown. The 35-10 victory allowed Clemson to win the ACC title. No Clemson offensive lineman has scored a touchdown since.

1967--Buddy Gore’s 43-yard run in the third period led to a Tiger touchdown was a momentum swaying play in Clemson’s victory over the Gamecocks, a win that allowed Clemson to clinch a tie for the ACC championship. That was the key run on this day that saw Gore become the first Clemson back in history to go over 1000 yards in a season and break Brian Piccolo’s ACC single season rushing record.

1971--Eddie Seigler kicked a 52-yard field goal to lead Clemson to a 17-7 win over the Gamecocks. It was the first field goal of at least 50 yards in Clemson history.

1972--With Clemson leading 7-6 in the fourth period, Jimmy Williamson batted down a Dobby Grossman two-point conversion pass to preserve the victory for the Tigers.

1977--Jerry Butler made a 20-yard touchdown catch of a Steve Fuller pass with 49 seconds left to give Clemson a 31-27 win in Columbia. It clinched a Gator Bowl bid for the Tigers, Clemson’s first bowl bid in 18 years.

1980--Willie Underwood had a 37-yard interception return for a touchdown that clinched Clemson’s upset of South Carolina and Heisman Trophy winner George Rogers in 1980. Underwood was named Sports Illustrated Player of the Week for his performance in that game.

1981--Just as it had happed 33 years previously, a blocked punt played a big part in a Clemson victory over South Carolina that allowed the Tigers to have an undefeated season. Rod McSwain blocked a South Carolina punt and Johnny Rembert recovered in the endzone for the touchdown. Just as it had been 33 years previous, the line of scrimmage was the South Carolina 28.

1988—Rodney Williams, a native of Columbia, led Clemson to a 29-10 victory in his final game at Death Valley. Clemson’s winningest starting quarterback in history threw for 192 and rushed for 38 and scored a touchdown.

1990--Chris Gardocki made his final punt in Death Valley memorable when he had a 78-yard boot in the fourth quarter to give South Carolina bad field position and clinch Clemson’s 24-15 victory over the Gamecocks. It remains the second longest punt in Clemson history.

1995--Emory Smith carried South Carolina tacklers 20 yards on the way to a 54-yard run that led to the game clinching touchdown in Columbia. Smith ended the game with 101 yards rushing.

2000--Rod Gardner’s 50-yard reception from Woody Dantzler with 10 seconds left led to Aaron Hunt’s game winning field goal with three seconds left.

2007—Mark Buchholz kicked a 35-yard field goal on the last play of the game, to give Clemson a 23-21 victory in Columbia.


Clemson’s most significant wins in the South Carolina Series


1900 51-0 Part of a perfect 6-0 season under first-year head coach John Heisman

1928 32-0 Clemson wins battle of unbeatens. Both teams were 5-0 entering the game. Clemson went on to an 8-3 record, a season mark for wins in a season at the time.

1939 27-0 Banks McFadden leads Clemson to victory, important win in 9-1 season that ended with win over Boston College in the Cotton Bowl

1948 13-7 Phil Prince blocks a field goal late in the game, leading to Clemson victory that preserves unbeaten season. Clemson went on to perfect 11-0 record

1956 7-0 A 20th ranked Clemson team downs South Carolina in ACC rival game. Tigers went on to win the ACC Championship

1959 27-0 Clemson wins final Big Thursday game in Columbia behind Harvey White. Tigers went on to 9-2 record and number 11 final ranking and the ACC title.

1960 12-2 Clemson wins first ever game between the two schools in Clemson

1967 23-12 Clemson wins game in final game of season to clinch ACC Championship. The last time Clemson won an ACC title by beating South Carolina in final game (it also happened in 1966)

1977 31-27 Jerry Butler’s catch in final seconds gives Tigers come from behind victory. Victory sends Clemson to the Gator Bowl, its first bowl game in 18 years

1980 27-6 Clemson upsets 14th-ranked South Carolina team behind Willie Underwood’s two interceptions and 17 tackles. South Carolina had Heisman Trophy winner George Rogers and had won at Michigan earlier in the year. South Carolina was 8-2 entering the game.

1981 29-13 Clemson closes out perfect regular season on way to National Championship.

1988 29-10 Clemson won battle of top 25 teams in Rodney Williams final home game. Clemson then beats Oklahoma in bowl game to finish season in top 10.

2000 16-14 Clemson wins battle of top 25 teams thanks to Rod Gardner’s 50-yard reception from Woody Dantzler in final seconds

2003 63-17 Clemson’s most points scored against the Gamecocks and largest victory margin since 1900. Charlie Whitehurst threw for four touchdown passes and Chad Jasmin scored four.

2005 13-9 Clemson defeats 19th ranked South Carolina team in Columbia, only time it has beaten top 20 South Carolina team in Columbia.


Last Year vs. South Carolina

Clemson 31, South Carolina 14

November 29, 2009 At Clemson, SC



In his last home game as a Tiger, James Davis scored three rushing touchdowns to lead Clemson to a 31-14 victory over South Carolina at Memorial Stadium on November 29. The game was played in a consistent light rain, the first time it had rained during the rivalry game since 1992.


The Tigers, who became bowl eligible with the win, won for the sixth time in the last seven meetings between the two teams and improved to 65-37-4 in the all-time series. It was also the 100th consecutive year the two rivals faced each other.


Clemson jumped out to a 24-0 lead in the first half, as all 24 points came off three interceptions and a blocked punt. In all, the Tiger defense tallied four interceptions, its high total in the rivalry game since 1971 when it had six picks against the Gamecocks.
Meanwhile, the Tigers held a 24-7 halftime lead thanks to 274 yards of total offense in the first 30 minutes. All six of Clemson’s plays of 20 yards or more came in the first half as well.


The Tigers outgained South Carolina 383-304 despite totaling nine less plays on offense. Clemson had 184 rushing yards and 199 passing yards in a balanced effort. A key to its success was converting 8-14 third downs and having a 36-29 advantage in average starting field position thanks in part to Jimmy Maners’ 46.7-yard average on three punts.


Davis had a game-high 91 yards on 24 carries along with three scores. C.J. Spiller added 88 yards on 16 carries along with three catches for 35 yards and 76 return yards, giving the junior 199 all-purpose yards in the game.


Cullen Harper was efficient under center, as he was 12-17 passing for 199 yards and one touchdown against no interceptions. Aaron Kelly had four catches for 76 yards, while Jacoby Ford had a 50-yard receiving touchdown.


The Tigers drove 85 yards in 10 plays to grab the game’s first lead. Ford’s 21-yard rush moved the ball to midfield. Four plays later, Spiller eluded several Gamecock defenders on a 39-yard rush to the Gamecock one. Davis reached paydirt on the next play to give Clemson a 7-0 lead.


After a South Carolina three-and-out, Jamie Harper blocked Spencer Lanning’s punt. After the ball rolled out-of-bounds at the Gamecock 29, Clemson moved the chains twice with first downs. But the drive stalled and Mark Buchholz kicked a 22-yard field goal late in the first quarter.


Chris Clemons picked off a Smelley pass in the second quarter and advanced the ball near midfield. Two plays later, Clemson called for its recently installed “Cock-a-Doodle-Doo” play, where Ford bent down to tie his shoe near the Tiger sideline. After the ball was snapped, Ford raced downfield. Cullen Harper, who was nearly sacked, was able to connect with the uncovered Ford, who made a Gamecock defender miss and sprinted into the endzone to give Clemson a 17-0 lead.


After South Carolina advanced the ball into Clemson territory, Michael Hamlin intercepted Smelley and returned the theft 24 yards to the Gamecock 41. After two carries for 21 yards by Spiller, Davis raced 20 yards for a touchdown. The score upped Clemson’s lead to 24-0.


With 2:12 left in the first half, Jasper Brinkley stripped Harper and South Carolina recovered at the Tiger 33. Four plays later, Smelley hit Patrick DiMarco for a 16-yard touchdown passing with 31 seconds remaining before halftime. DiMarco had stepped out-of-bounds, but the officials ruled that he was forced out.


The Gamecocks scored on their first drive of the second half. The eight-play, 69-yard drive was capped by Weslye Saunders’ 23-yard receiving touchdown over the middle.


But Clemson responded with a touchdown drive of its own to increase its lead to 17 points. Clemson converted three third downs on a 44-yard drive, capped by Davis’ two-yard touchdown plunge with 3:38 remaining in the third quarter.


The Tigers regained possession early in the fourth quarter and took 7:02 off the clock. The drive did not culminate in points, as Buchholz missed a 41-yard field-goal attempt, but the drive was effective due to the time it drained off the clock.


The Gamecocks got the ball back for their last drive with 7:52 left in the game and drove 60 yards into the red zone. But Smelley was picked off for the fourth time, this time by Chris Chancellor, his second interception of the contest and third of his career against South Carolina. Clemson essentially ran the rest of the time off the clock, much to the delight of the rain-soaked Tiger fans in attendance.


DeAndre McDaniel had a team-high 11 tackles, while Hamlin totaled nine stops, two pass breakups, and an interception. Crezdon Butler had the Tigers’ lone sack as well.


Clemson Vets vs. South Carolina


Kevin Alexander (DE): Started and recorded one tackle against South Carolina in 2008.


Da’Quan Bowers (DE): Recorded five tackles and a quarterback pressure in 2008 against South Carolina.


Crezdon Butler (CB):Had three tackles (one for loss) in 19 snaps off of the bench in 2006; Started and recorded four tackles at South Carolina in 2007; Recorded three tackles, including one sack, and a forced fumble as a starter in 2008 against South Carolina.


Chris Chancellor (CB): Had four tackles in 53 snaps as a starter against South Carolina in 2006;Recorded a season-high six tackles and added an interception at SouthCarolina in 2007; Had two tackles and two interceptions in 2008 against South Carolina. So Chancellor has three career interceptions against the Gamecocks.


Kavell Conner (LB): Recorded six tackles and added a forced fumble in 65 snaps as a starter against South Carolina in 2008.
Jamie Harper (RB): Blocked a punt that led to a score in 2008 game at Clemson.


Jacoby Ford (WR): Caught a 76-yard touchdown pass from Will Proctor in 2006 against SouthCarolina, the longest catch of his career; DNP in 2007 due to injury; Caught a 50-yard touchdown pass from Cullen Harper in 2008.


Jarvis Jenkins (DT): Had two quarterback pressures in 44 snaps as a starter against South Carolina in 2008.


Brandon Maye (LB): Recorded three tackles as a starter in 2008 against South Carolina.


DeAndre McDaniel (S): Had four tackles in 23 snaps off the bench at South Carolina in 2007;recorded a career-high 11 tackles, including one sack, in a start against South Carolina in 2008.

Ricky Sapp (DE): Came off the bench and had two tackles in 19 snaps against South Carolina in 2006; Matched a career high with seven tackles in a start in 2007 at South Carolina; DNP in 2008 due to injury.


C.J. Spiller (RB): Rushed for a then career-high 155 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries against South Carolina in 2006; Recorded 88 rushing yards on 16 carries in 2007; Rushed for 88 yards on 16 carries and added three receptions for 35 yards in 2008 against South Carolina.


Clemson vs. South Carolina to Play for 101st Straight Year

The Clemson vs. South Carolina series ranks in a tie for 13th in college football history in terms of most played rivalries with 106 games played. The most played rivalry is the Minnesota vs. Wisconsin series, which had been played 118 times entering this year.
This will be the 101st consecutive year that Clemson and South Carolina have met on the gridiron, every year since 1909. It has moved into third place all time for longest uninterrupted series in college football history. The only active rivalries that are longer are the Kansas vs. Nebraska rivalry (active since 1906) and the Minnesota vs. Wisconsin rivalry (active since 1907).


Longest Uninterrupted Series in College Football History
(Entering 2009 season)
Games Matchup Series Span


103 Kansas vs. Nebraska 1906-Pres.

102 Minnesota vs. Wisconsin 1907-Pres.

100 Clemson vs. South Carolina 1909-Pres.

98 Kansas vs. Kansas State 1911-Pres.

97 Kansas vs. Oklahoma 1903-97

97 North Carolina vs. Virginia 1910-Pres.

95 Wake Forest vs. NC State 1910-Pres.

94 Texas vs. Texas A&M 1915-Pres

93 Mississippi vs. Mississippi State 1915-Pres

91 Michigan vs. Ohio State 1918-Pres



Most Played Rivalries in College Football

(Entering 2009)

Gms Match-up First-game

118 Minnesota-Wisconsin 1890

117 Kansas-Missouri 1891

115 Nebraska-Kansas 1892

115 Texas-Texas A&M 1894

113 Miami (OH)—Cincinnati 1888

113 North Carolina-Virginia 1892

112 Auburn-Georgia 1892

112 Oregon-Oregon State 1894

111 Purdue-Indiana 1891

111 Stanford-California 1892

109 Army-Navy 1890

108 Utah-Utah State 1892

106 Clemson-South Carolina 1896

105 Baylor-TCU 1899

105 Kansas-Kansas State 1902

105 Michigan-Ohio State 1897

105 Mississippi-Mississippi State 1901


Throw out the Record Books?


We always hear the phrase, “You can throw out he record books when these two teams get together.” While there have been some upsets in this series, usually the team with the better record comes away with the victory. The team entering the game with the better overall record has an 18-6-1 record in the series since 1981. That computes to 75 percent over a 28-year period. Three times during that era both teams had the same record.

However, the norm has been broken in recent years. Four of the last five years the team with the better overall record entering the game has lost. In 2004, South Carolina had the better record entering the game at 6-4 compared to Clemson’s 5-5, but the Tigers won the game, 29-7. In 2005, South Carolina had the upper hand with a 7-3 mark compared to the 6-4 for Clemson, but Clemson won the game, 13-9. In 2006, Clemson had the better record at 8-3, while South Carolina is 6-5, but South Carolina won, 31-28. In 2008 South Carolina was 7-4 and Clemson 5-5, but the Tigers won.

The team with the better record entering this game won every year between 1997-2003. In 1996 the team with the worse record won. Current Clemson offensive line coach and assistant head coach Brad Scott was the head coach for South Carolina in that game.

For the history of the series, Clemson has a 40-15-3 record when it enters the contest with the better record, a 71.5 winning percentage.

Clemson has had the better record in 58 of the 106 previous meetings. The teams have had the same winning percentage entering the game nine times and Clemson has a 7-2 record in those situations.

Thus, Clemson is 47-17-3 (.720) against South Carolina over the years when the Tigers enter the game with at least the same record as South Carolina. Clemson has a 65-37-4 advantage in the series overall, so the Gamecocks have a 20-18-1 record in the series when they enter the game with the better record.

Two Weeks to Prepare

Normally when a team has an extra week of preparation it is an advantage for that team. But that has not been the case in the Clemson vs. South Carolina series in recent years. Each of the last three years one of the teams has had an extra week to prepare and that team has lost all three times. In 2006, Clemson had an extra week to prepare for South Carolina, but lost 31-28 at Clemson. In 2007 South Carolina had an extra week to prepare for the Tigers, but Clemson won 23-21. Last year South Carolina again had an extra week to prepare for the Tigers, but Clemson won 31-14.

South Carolina has an extra week to prepare for the Tigers this year.

Dabo Swinney is 2-0 so far in his career against teams that have an extra week to prepare for his Tigers. Last year he defeated Virginia and South Carolina when those teams had two weeks to prepare.

Top 10 Unusual Facts about the Clemson vs. South Carolina Series

10. One of the three coaches to win a bowl game for South Carolina will be on the sidelines for Saturday’s game, but he will be in a Clemson coaching uniform. Brad Scott was the first South Carolina head coach to win a bowl game when he took the Gamecocks to victory in the 1994 Carquest Bowl over West Virginia. Scott had a 2-1 record in Clemson Memorial Stadium as South Carolina head coach between 1994-98. His son is now an assistant coach at Clemson.

9. Charlie Whitehurst is the only starting quarterback to lead a team to four wins in the history of the series. He did that for the Tigers between 2002-05.

8.Josh Cody had a 4-0 record for Clemson against South Carolina
between 1927-30. He is the only coach in the series to have a perfect record, given a minimum of three games coached.

7.Paul Williams is the last player to letter for both schools. He lettered for Clemson in 1978 and for South Carolina in 1980.

6. A Clemson captain actually played for South Carolina. Cary Cox lettered for the Gamecocks in 1943. After the war, he enrolled at Clemson and served as captain for the Tigers in 1947. Cox died in 2008.

5. Clemson had three touchdown plays of at least 76 yards against South Carolina in 2006, yet lost the game. Jacoby Ford scored on 76-yard touchdown pass, C.J. Spiller on a 80-yard run and Jock McKissic on a 82-yard interception return. It is the only game in Clemson history in which Clemson has had three scoring plays of at least 75 yards.

4. In 1948 and 1981 a blocked punt returned for a touchdown proved to be the pivotal play in a Clemson victory, victories that allowed Clemson to go on to an undefeated season. In both instances, the original line of scrimmage was the South Carolina 28-yard-line.

3. Willie Underwood had two interceptions to lead Clemson to victory over South Carolina in 1980. A starter for four years, the strong safety never had recorded an interception in any of his first 46 games as a Tiger, then had two against the Gamecocks in his 47th and final game.

2. In a placekicking career that spanned five years, Bob Paulling made 107 of 109 extra points. Both of his misses were at South Carolina, one in 1981 and one in 1983. He had a streak of 70 consecutive made extra points (second longest in Clemson history) in between the two miscues.

1. In the 30 games that Frank Howard coached at Clemson against South Carolina, Clemson scored 411 points and South Carolina scored 411 points.


Most Recent Meeting in Columbia

Clemson 23, South Carolina 21

November 24, 20007


Mark Buchholz kicked a 35-yard field goal as time expired to lift #21 Clemson to a 23-21 victory over South Carolina at Williams-Brice Stadium on November 27, 2009. It was the Tigers’ first “buzzer-beater victory” in regulation since the 1986 season.

The win also gave Clemson its ninth win over the Gamecocks in the last 11 years and ninth win in its last 10 trips to Columbia.

The Tigers outgained South Carolina 443-364 thanks to 33 more offensive plays (85-52). Clemson had 214 rushing yards and 229 through the air. The Tigers also had 26 first downs and held the ball for 38:37, over 17 minutes longer than South Carolina.

James Davis and C.J. Spiller combined for 210 rushing yards on 37 carries, including 122 yards by Davis and 88 yards by Spiller. Cory Boyd led the Gamecocks with 74 rushing yards on 19 carries.

Cullen Harper was 28-38 for 229 yards and one touchdown pass. His favorite target was Aaron Kelly, who had nine receptions for 134 yards, including four catches for 70 yards on the game-winning drive. Nelson Faerber added four catches for 20 yards and a score, as the former walk-on was subbing for an injured Tyler Grisham.

Gamecock quarterback Blake Mitchell was 18-31 for 284 yards and three touchdowns. Kenny McKinley totaled eight catches for 125 yards and two touchdowns, while Dion Lecorn added five receptions for 65 yards and a touchdown.

Chris Chancellor started the Tigers off on the right foot when he intercepted Mitchell on the first play of the game. Then, Davis’ 29-yard carry moved the ball into Gamecock territory. But the Tigers had to settle for Buchholz’s 48-yard field goal.

On South Carolina’s ensuing drive, Faerber blocked Ryan Succop’s punt deep in Gamecock territory. La’Donte Harris scooped up the ball and raced 10 yards for a touchdown, giving the Tigers a 10-0 lead. It was Clemson’s first touchdown on a blocked punt against South Carolina since 1981.

The Gamecocks responded with a 74-yard scoring drive to narrow Clemson’s lead to 10-7. On second-and-19, Boyd caught a pass out of the backfield and sprinted 39 yards to the Tiger 21. Three plays later on third-and-eight, Mitchell lofted a perfectly-thrown pass to McKinley for a 19-yard touchdown.

After the two teams traded punts, Clemson went on a 10-play, 88-yard drive to up its lead to 17-7. Davis and Spiller each had rushes of 19 yards, while Davis went over the 3,000-yard career rushing mark on the drive. Harper capped the drive with a four-yard touchdown pass to Faerber.

In the fourth period, after a Cullen Harper interceptions, Mitchell hit McKinley over the middle for a 40-yard touchdown pass, narrowing Clemson’s lead to 17-14.

The Tigers answered with a 13-play, 69-yard drive to up their lead to 20-14. Kelly’s 20-yard reception moved the ball near midfield. A six-yard pass-interference penalty on third-and-14 extended the drive that ended in Buchholz’s 28-yard field goal.

Neither Phillip Merling’s caused fumble or Dorell Scott’s interception on the Gamecock’s next two drives resulted in Tiger points, as the latter saw Buchholz miss on a 45-yard field-goal attempt.

South Carolina then drove 72 yards in the fourth quarter to take a 21-20 lead. McKinley’s 35-yard catch and run gave the Gamecocks first-and-goal. Two plays later, Mitchell found a wide-open Lecorn in the endzone for a four-yard score.

The Tigers were forced to punt on their next drive, as Maners’ 55-yard boot and McKinley’s seven-yard return set up South Carolina at its own 12. After Boyd rushed 16 yards on the first play of the ensuing drive, Boyd’s number was called again on the next three plays. But the Tiger defense was up to the test, as it stopped the senior running back on third-and-four, forcing a punt with 2:09 left.

Clemson took over at its own 22 and promptly moved near midfield when Kelly caught a 26-yard pass over the middle. The reception was Kelly’s 81st of the season to establish a new school record.
the Tigers faced third-and-18. But Harper calmly completed a 14-yard pass to Kelly on third down and 12-yard pass to Kelly on fourth down. Then, Kelly’s 18-yard catch moved Clemson into field-goal range. After Harper’s spike and kneel-down in the middle of the field, Buchholz kicked the game-winning 35-yard field goal as time expired.


Rumph Played for Gamecocks


Chris Rumph is in his fourth season as a Clemson defensive ends coach, but he is a South Carolina graduate. Rumph was a four-time letterman at South Carolina between 1991-94. He had 52 tackles in 11 regular season games in 1994, his senior year, and helped South Carolina to a victory at Clemson to clinch a bowl bid. He played in South Carolina’s first win in a bowl game, a victory over West Virginia in the Carquest Bowl. Brad Scott was the head coach for South Carolina in that game.


Johnson Coached at Clemson


South Carolina Assistant Head Coach Ellis Johnson will coach against Clemson on Saturday. Johnson was at Clemson for three years from 1994-96, including two years as defensive coordinator (1995-1996). Clemson had records of 8-4 and 7-5 in his two years as defensive coordinator. Clemson was 10th in the nation in scoring defense in 1995 with a 16.2 average and ranked 16th in pass efficiency defense.

Johnson is the 10th coach to serve on the staffs at both Clemson and South Carolina since 1989. The list includes current Clemson assistant head coach and offensive line coach Brad Scott, who served as South Carolina’s head coach from 1994-98.
Woody McCorvey served at Clemson from 1983-89, then at South Carolina in 1998. He is now back at Clemson at director of football operations.


Knowing Both Sides of the Rivalry

Coach at South Carolina At Clemson

Mile Aldridge 1991-93 (3) 1985-89, 93-95 (8)

David Bibee 1989-93 (5) 1998-98 (2)

Rich Bisaccia 1992-93 (2) 1994-98 (5)

Clyde Christensen 1991 (1) 1994-95 (2)

Elis Johnson 2008 (1) 1994-96 (3)

Woody McCorvey 1998 (1) 1983-89 (7)

Chuck Reedy 1998 (1) 1978-89 (12)

Brad Scott 1994-98 (5) 1999-Present (10th)

Rick Stockstill 2004 (2nd) 1989-02 (14)

Tommy West 1991-92 (2) 1982-89, 94-98 (13)

Note: Scott was head coach at South Carolina, West head coach at Clemson, 94-98.

Spiller Has played Well vs. Gamecocks


Clemson running back C.J. Spiller had his second best running game of his career against South Carolina in his freshman season. He had 10-155 in that game, the third most rushing yards by a Clemson running back vs. the Gamecocks. That included an 80-yard for a score. His career high is 165 against Florida State earlier this year.

For his career, Spiller has 42 rushes for 331 yards against South Carolina, a 7.9 average. He also has two rushing touchdowns and nine receptions for 61 yards. He has 58 career touches for 498 yards in his three years against the Gamecocks. He has had exactly 16 rushes for 88 yards against South Carolina in each of the last two years. He finished last year’s game with 199 all-purpose yards.

Overall, Clemson has had 33 100-yard rushing games over the years against South Carolina, including three in one game in 1978. The record rushing performance was turned in by Ken Callicutt, who had 27-197 against the Gamecocks in 1974.


Clemson’s Top Rushing Games vs. South Carolina


Year Player Site Att-Yds

1974 Ken Callicutt H 27-197

1967 Buddy Gore A 31-189

2006 C.J. Spiller H 10-155

1981 Chuck McSwain A 25-151

1944 Sid Tinsley A 22-146

2005 James Davis A 27-145

1975 Harold Goggins A 17-137

1996 Raymond Priester H 18-137

1985 Kenny Flowers A 26-136

1966 Buddy Gore H 25-130

1976 Warren Ratchford H 10-127

2004 Reggie Merriweather H 28-125

2007 James Davis A 22-123



Parker Leads Nation in Wins by Freshmen QBs


Clemson freshman quarterback Kyle Parker has been under center for all 11 starts this year and is a major reason the Tigers are 8-3 and Atlantic Division champions. In winning eight games as the starting quarterback, he leads all freshmen nationally. Matt Barkley of Southern California and Andrew Luck of Stanford are second with seven wins apiece. Parker is fourth among freshman quarterbacks in passing efficiency and second in touchdown passes with 18. Only Landry Jones of Oklahoma has more with 23.
Parker has already broken the Clemson record for wins by a freshman quarterback. The previous record was five by Rodney Williams in 2002.

Parker has been on a hot streak and it coincides with Clemson’s six-game winning streak. In those six games Parker has completed 91-144 for 1187 yards and 13 touchdowns with just four interceptions. That computes to a 156.66 passing efficiency and a .632 completion percentage.

Parker has thrown at least one touchdown pass in each of the last six games, tying the Clemson record for consecutive games with a touchdown pass. Mike Eppley (1984) and Woody Dantzler (2000) also had six game streaks. So, Parker will break the record if he throws a scoring pass this weekend at South Carolina.


Swinney Continues Tradition of Alabama Coaches at Clemson


Dabo Swinney is a 1993 Alabama graduate and is carrying on the tradition of successful Alabama graduates who have been Clemson head coaches. Swinney has a 12-6 record so far as Clemson head coach, including the 8-3 mark so far this year. He has taken Clemson to the Atlantic Division title for the first time.

Swinney will attempt to become the fourth different Alabama graduate to coach Clemson to an ACC title when the Tigers face Georgia Tech on December 5 in Tampa for the ACC Championship game. Frank Howard (Alabama ’31) won six ACC titles, Charley Pell (Alabama ’61) won one, and Danny Ford (Alabama ’70) won five.

Only four different Clemson coaches have won the ACC championship and three are Alabama graduates. They have accounted for 12 of Clemson’s 13 ACC titles. The only coach to win the ACC title who is not an Alabama graduate is Ken Hatfield, who coached Clemson to its last ACC title in 1991. He is an Arkansas graduate.


Clemson Second in Nation in Scoring/Total Offense differential


One statistic that sticks out on Clemson’s rundown of national stat rankings is scoring offense. The Tigers are now 19th in the nation in scoring average with 33.1 points per game. Clemson was 83rd in the nation in scoring after the loss to Maryland on October 3.
Clemson is 64th in the nation in total offense with 370.7 yards per game. That is a difference of 45 places in national ranking between scoring average and total offense average.

The difference can be related to many things. One is average field position. Clemson’s average start on its possessions this year is its own 38 yard line, the best on record by five yards. C.J. Spiller and his kick return prowess has a lot to do with that.
That means Clemson has a shorter field on average and that can effect total yardage. There are fewer yards to get. Second, Clemson has scored six touchdowns this year on kick returns and defensive returns. Clemson has also forced turnovers on the opponent’s side of the field.

A look to the top 10 teams in the nation in terms of positive differential between scoring average and total offense rankings shows that all 10 teams are at least 7-4 or better this year. Temple leads the nation in this category with a 65-place difference and has a 9-2 record. Clemson is second in this area and has an 8-3 record.


Largest Difference in Scoring Average and Total Offense National Rankings

Team Scoring Total

Offense Offense Diff W-L

Temple 28th 93rd +65 9-2

Clemson 19th 64th +45 8-3

Northern Illinois 32nd 76th +44 7-4

Rutgers 58th 98th +40 7-3

Ohio University 70th 103rd +33 8-3

Navy 45th 78th +33 8-3

Boston College 67th 99th +32 7-4

North Carolina 82nd 113th +31 8-3

LSU 76th 106th +30 8-3

Oklahoma State 20th 48th +28 9-2

Tigers Win Atlantic Division for First Time


Clemson clinched the Atlantic Division title on November 21 with a 34-21 win over Virginia at Clemson. It gave the Tigers a 6-2 league mark. Boston College is in second place at 4-3 with one game left. The Tigers also defeated the Eagles during the regular season so they had the tie breaker over the Eagles as well.

The 6-2 record is the best for the Tigers in the ACC since 2003 when Clemson was also 6-2. Clemson was also 6-2 in 2000.
This is the first time Clemson has won the Atlantic Division. The division format began in 2005. In each of the first four years of the format Clemson finished a game out of first place. From 2005-07 if Clemson had beaten Boston College Clemson would have gone to the ACC title game.

Clemson will face Georgia Tech in the ACC title game in Tampa on December 5 at 8:00 PM. The game will be televised by ESPN. This will be the second meeting this year between the two teams. Georgia Tech won in Atlanta on September 10 by a 30-27 score. This will be the first time in Clemson history that the Tigers have faced the same team twice in one year.


Spiller Establishes another ACC Record
Clemson running back C.J. Spiller established another ACC record in the win over Virginia. The native of Florida now has 2066 all-purpose running yards, more than any ACC player for a season in history. The previous record was held by Thomas Jones of Virginia, who had 2054 in 1999.

It should be pointed out that Spiller has a player chasing him in this area. Maryland sophomore Torrey Smith has 2053 all-purpose yards, including 1235 on kickoff returns, and is just 13 yards behind. But, Smith has just one game left, against Boston College this coming Saturday. Spiller has three games left.

Spiller is also on pace to set the league record for all-purpose yards per game. He has a 187.8 average so far this year. The existing record is 186.9 by Frank Quayle of Virginia in 1968. Quayle is the color commentator for the Virginia radio network and got to watch Spiller first hand on November 21.


ACC All-Purpose Yardage Season Bests

Rk Player School Year GP Plays Yds

1. C.J. Spiller Clemson 2009 11 224 2066

2. Thomas Jones Virginia 1999 11 358 2054

3. Torrey Smith Maryland 2009 11 114 2053

4. Don McCauley UNC 1970 11 342 2021

5. Torry Holt NC State 1998 11 114 1979

6. Alvin Pearman Virginia 2004 12 257 1938

7. Tiki Barber Virginia 1995 12 320 1906

8. Derrick Hamilton Clemson 2002 13 140 1883



Tigers Have Winning Season Every Year this Decade



Clemson clinched its 10th straight winning season with the victory over Virginia on November 21. The Tigers have had a winning season every year since 2000. Clemson’s last non-winning season was in 1999 when the Tigers were 6-6 in Tommy Bowden’s first year, but did play in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.


Entering this year, 14 schools had posted a winning season in every year in the first decade of the 21st century. In addition to Clemson those schools are Boise State, Boston College, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, LSU, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Southern Mississippi, Texas, Texas Tech and Virginia Tech.



Spiller and Ford Set NCAA Record
C.J. Spiller and Jacoby Ford became the greatest all-purpose duo in NCAA history during the win over Florida State. That was fitting because both are natives of Florida and bother were on the program cover for that contest.


Spiller had 312 all-purpose yards in that game, the Clemson single game record, while Ford added 61. That gave Ford and Spiller a combined 10,334 yards for their careers. They now have 10,889 between them.


They broke the national record for combined all-purpose yards by teammaes. The national record for career all-purpose yards by two teammates was 10,253 by Marshall Faulk and Darnay Scott of San Diego State between 1991-93.



Top Accomplishments of Senior Class (19 players)



•Led Clemson to first Atlantic Division championship in 2009 with a 6-2 league record. Team ranked in top 15 of current AP poll.


•Seniors on first Clemson team to beat Florida State and Miami (FL) in the same year. This class finished with a 3-1 record against Florida State, tying for the most wins by a class against the Seminoles.


•Gained two road wins over top 10 teams, a win at ninth-ranked Florida State in 2006 and eighth-ranked Miami (FL) in 2009. The win at Miami tied for the highest ranked team Clemson has beaten on the road in its history.


•The group has 32 wins in the bank in 50 games.


•Has been to a bowl every year and will make it four years in a row this year.


•Has been ranked at some point in each of the four seasons. That includes a top 25 ranking in 31 different polls over the last four years.


•Defeated Georgia Tech 31-7 at Clemson in 2006 in the first ESPN Gameday appearance on the Clemson campus.


•Has a 2-1 record against state rival South Carolina so far.


•Seniors C.J. Spiller and Jacoby Ford are the greatest all-purpose running classmates in the history of college football with 10,889 yards over the four years.


•Seniors Thomas Austin, Durrell Barry, Sadat Chambers, Kyle Johnson and Chris Chancellor already have an undergraduate degree. Joining them in December will be C.J. Spiller, Jacoby Ford, Kavell Conner, Jamarcus Grant, Ronald Watson and Cory Lambert.



Clemson 2009 Seniors

No Player Pos Hometown

24 Kevin Alexander DE Raiford, FL

65 Thomas Austin OG Camden, SC

82 Durrell Barry TE North Charleston, SC

91 Jess Bowers DL Mountain Rest, SC

18 Crezdon Butler CB Asheville, NC

48 Jeremy Campbell LB Port Orange, FL

27 Sadat Chambers FS Pageland, SC

38 Chris Chancellor CB Miami, FL

33 Kavell Conner LB Richmond, VA

6 Jacoby Ford WR Royal Palm Beach, FL

70 Jamarcus Grant OT Mullins, SC

88 Kyle Johnson WR Charlotte, NC

76 Cory Lambert OT Greenville, SC

86 Michael Palmer TE Stone Mountain, GA

84 George Rabon TE Aiken, SC

7 Ricky Sapp DE Bamberg, SC

28 C.J. Spiller RB Lake Butler, FL

5 Rendrick Taylor FB Clio, SC

37 Ronald Watson RB Mauldin, SC



Clemson Ranked High in Many Defensive Categories



While Clemson has made a great improvement on the offensive side of the football over its six -game winning streak, the Tigers have been solid on defense all year. That is a prime reason the Tigers under defensive coordinator Kevin Steele rank in the top 25 in the nation in nine different defensive categories.


Many of those rankings deal with pass defense. Clemson’s veteran secondary is the major reason Clemson ranks second in the nation in interceptions with 20 so far this year. . The Tigers are also 12th in pass defense (fewest yards allowed) and 17th in pass efficiency defense. Clemson has defeated Florida State, NC State, Wake Forest and Miami this year and all four of those team’s quarterbacks are ranked within the top five in the ACC in passing efficiency.



Clemson Defensive Rankings in Top 25

•#2 in Interceptions, 20

•#11 in turnovers forced, 27

•#12 in pass defense, 169.8

•#12 in tackles for loss, 8.2

•#12 in total defense, 296.9

•#17 in pass efficiency defense, 107.3

•#19th fewest first downs allowed, 16.4

•#20 in scoring defense, 18.2

•#11 in sacks, 3.0

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