Gridiron Classic Names Five From Clemson to Watch List

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Brian Mance ranked in the top 30 in the nation in both punt and kickoff returns in 2001.

ORLANDO - Florida Citrus Sports, host of the Rotary Gridiron Classic,
has named five players from Clemson to its initial watch list. The
Rotary Gridiron Classic, a game that matches the top collegiate
players from around the nation against those from Florida, will be
played on January 25, 2003. Below is a player-by-player look at which
Tigers made the Rotary Gridiron Classic Watch List.

Nick Eason, a 6’4", 290-pound defensive tackle out of Lyons, Ga.,
finished the 2001 season with 37 tackles, seven tackles for loss and
10 quarterback pressures. Named to the AFCA GoodWorks Team last
season, Eason is a preseason All-Atlantic Coast Conference selection.

Brian Mance, a 5’11", 185-pound cornerback from Alcolu, S.C., ranked
in the top 30 in the nation in both punt and kickoff returns in 2001.
Mance started 11 games last season, recording 48 tackles, three
interceptions and seven passes broken up.

Bryant McNeal, a 6’5", 245-pound defensive end from Swansea, S.C.,
was named to the watch list after a remarkable junior season in 2001.
McNeal finished the year ranked third in the ACC with eight sacks,
second in fumbles caused with four and ninth in tackles for loss with

Eric Meekins, a 6’3", 190-pound free safety from Easley, S.C.,
finished the 2001 season with 72 total tackles, three tackles for
loss, three passes broken up and one interception.

Rodney Thomas, a six-foot, 222-pound linebacker from Cadwell, Ga.,
finished the 2001 season with 100 total tackles, nine tackles for
loss and 15 quarterback pressures. He also recorded three sacks on
the campaign.

While the selection committee of the Rotary Gridiron Classic will
release its initial watch list before the season begins, the
committee will add players not on the initial list as the season

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