CLEMSON, S.C. - Woodrow Dantzler completed 20-32 passes for 309 yards and four touchdowns to highlight a 142-play Clemson football scrimmage in Death Valley on Saturday. It was the first stadium scrimmage for Tommy Bowden's Tigers. The team will have its annual Spring Game on April 15 in Death Valley at 3:00 PM.
Dantzler led the first-team offense on nine scoring drives, six touchdowns and three field goals. He completed 10 of his first 12 passes to open the scrimmage, including a one-yard touchdown pass to Jason LeMay that ended a 13-play 70-yard drive against the number-one defense.
Later in the scrimmage he completed a 50-yard scoring strike to freshman Kevin Youngblood, a 93-yard scoring pass to senior wide receiver Rod Gardner and a six-yard scoring pass to Gardner. Dantlzer, who averaged 209 yards of total offense per game last year, second highest figure in Clemson history, also rushed 10 times for 38 yards.
"Woodrow looked like a quarterback who has taken snaps and played in this stadium," said Bowden. "He was accurate and the receivers did a good job catching the ball. Willie Simmons looked like a freshman who had a bad ankle.
"What impressed me is that we didn't have any turnovers the entire game and the offensive line did a good job picking up the blitz. We will be very successful on offense if we can get a hat on all the defenders. The offensive line is coming along."
Three other quarterbacks saw action in the scrimmage. Freshman Willie Simmons, who had suffered a sprained ankle in Wednesday's practice, completed 12-29 passes for 165 yards and a touchdown. He also led the number-two offense to two other touchdown drives and a field goal. One of the touchdowns was a four-yard run by Simmons. His touchdown pass was a seven-yard score to Youngblood. Matt Schell was 10-16 for 127 yards while walk-on Joe Bevers was 0-4.
Youngblood led all receivers with 6-142 and a pair of touchdowns. Gardner had just three receptions, but gained 120 yards receiving. Justin Watts had 5-60, while Joe Don Reames had 5-48. Altogether, 20 different receivers caught a combined 42 passes for 601 yards in the scrimmage. Clemson had 81 passes and 61 rushes on the day.
Travis Zachery missed the practice with a sprained clavicle. Terry Witherspoon was allowed to go to his home in Monroe, NC for a family commitment. Freshman Chad Jasmin missed the scrimmage with a knee sprain. Thus, Bowden ran many four and five receiver sets. Defensively, starting cornerback Alex Ardley missed the scrimmage with an injury., but should return Monday.
Bernard Rambert had 15 rushes for 38 yards and two touchdowns. Dantzler also had 38 yards rushing in 10 attempts, giving him 347 yards of total offense for the day. Walk-on Britt Sherman, who enrolled at Clemson in January, had 10 rushes for 34 yards.
The defense was led by Chad Speck and Charles Hafley, who had eight tackles apiece. Robert Carswell and Rodney Thomas added seven apiece. The defense did not force any turnovers, but Paul White and Braxton K. Williams each had two tackles for loss. Senior Freddie James had a sack of Willie Simmons in the endzone for a safety.
Tony Lazzara was successful on field goal attempts from 27, 40 and 33 yards and missed for 29 yards. Jamie Somaini made a 32 yard attempt, but missed an extra point.
Dantzler LeMay 1 pass from Dantzler (Lazzara Kick)
Dantzler Lazzara 27 FG
Dantzler Youngblood 50 pass from Dantzler (Lazzara Kick)
Dantzler Rambert 2 run (No attempt made)
Datnzler Rambert 2 run (Somaini Kick)
Simmons Somaini 32 FG
Dantzler Gardner 93 pass from Dantzler (kick blocked)
Safety Simmons tackles in endzone by James
Dantzler Lazzara 40 FG
Simmons Youngblood 7 pass from Simmons (Kick failed)
Dantzer Lazzara 33 FG
Simmons White 1 run (Somaini Kick)
Dantzler Gardner 6 pass from Dantzler (Lazzara Kick)
Simmons Simmons 4 run (Somaini Kick)
Passing: Dantzler 20-32-309-4-0, Simmons 12-29-165-1-0, Schell 10-16-127-0-0
Rushing: Rambert 15-38-2, Dantzler 10-38-0, Sherman 10-34-0,
Receiving: Youngblood 6-142-2, Watts 5-60, Reames 5-48-0, Gardner 3-120-2, Jenkins 3-28-0,
Tackle Leaders: Speck 8, Hafley 8, Carswell 7, Thomas 7, Adams 6, Carswon 5, Ellis 5
Tackles for Loss: Williams 2-6, Paul White 2-7