Late Auburn Touchdown Dooms Clemson In OT


by - Correspondent -
    |

ATLANTA - Freshman quarterback Kodi Burns rushed for a seven-yard touchdown in overtime, lifting Auburn to a 23-20 win over Clemson in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl Monday night.

The game was played before a crowd of 74,413 at the Georgia Dome, the third largest crowd in bowl history.

Clemson finishes the season 9-4, as does Auburn.

"It's a shame somebody had to lose...They made one more play there at the end of the game," said Clemson head coach Tommy Bowden. "Everybody hates to lose, and we hate to lose. That's good. You can't fault the effort."

Bowden's Tigers had taken a 20-17 lead after the first possession of OT, cashing in on a 25-yard field goal from Mark Buchholz.

When Auburn got it's turn it immediately fell into a hole, losing three yards on first down and getting an incomplete pass from Brandon Cox on second. But Cox was able to complete a third down pass to Rod Smith for 12 yards to within inches of the Clemson 15 and a first down.

Auburn gambled and went for it on fourth down, rather than attempt a game-tying field goal. Cox got the first down on a quarterback sneak to the Clemson 14.

Two plays later, on third and three from the Clemson seven, Burns kept the ball out of the shotgun and ran off right tackle for the winning touchdown.

The score touched off a massive celebration in the end zone for Tommy Tuberville's team. As for Bowden, it kept his Tigers from reaching 10 wins for the first time since 1990.

It also proved to be a bit of a preview of what may be coming for Auburn in the future, as new coordinator Tony Frankin's spread-offense imprint was easy to see with Burns at the helm.

"We had a hard time tackling their quarterback," Bowden said. "He was their leading rusher at about five yards per carry (and 73 yards total). We weren't sure how much of that they were going to do, so hats off to them."

Clemson appeared to take control of things early in the fourth quarter after Crezdon Butler's interception set up the Tigers at the Auburn 32.

A pair of runs by C.J. Spiller totaled just one yard. But quarterback Cullen Harper found Aaron Kelly for 27 more down the left sideline on third down, setting up the offense first and goal at the Auburn four.

Three plays later it was fourth and goal inside the one. Bowden chose to go for it and James Davis rewarded the coach's confidence by crashing off the left side for touchdown, giving Clemson a 17-10 lead.

But Auburn bounced back, driving 70 yards in 11 plays to tie the score on a one-yard run by Ben Tate.

Neither team could produce points the rest of the quarter, setting up the dramatic finish.

Clemson led 7-3 at the half on an electrifying 83-yard touchdown run by Spiller, both a Chick-Fil-A Bowl and CU bowl record. The margin could have been wider, save for a pair of missed long field goals by Buchholz. Both kicks (45, 53 yards) were wide right.

Auburn scored coming out of the half on a 22-yard pass from Burns to Mario Fannin to go up 10-7. But Buchholz would tie it on the first play of the fourth quarter with a 22-yard kick.

Spiller finished with 112 yards on just eight carries, while James Davis carried in 23 times for 72 yards.

The biggest deficiency - and the most surprising - was the poor evening turned in by Harper. The Clemson quarterback completed just 14-of-33 passes for only 104 yards. He missed a number of open receivers, especially on a series of deep throws in the first half which potentially could have gone the distance.

"Our throwing game wasn't as sharp," Bowden said. "We had an opportunity to hit some passes we hit in previous games. We just didn't hit them tonight."

Auburn starting quarterback Brandon Cox was 25-of-39 for 211 yards. He threw one interception.

Rate this Story:
29 votes

Send Feedback to Dan Scott: Email | Comment
    |
Loading...
Post your comments!
Subject (Replies: 40) Author
Late Auburn Touchdown Dooms Clemson In OT
B-Meist®
Really Tommy? People hate losing? Say it isn't so.***
johncu71
Re: Late Auburn Touchdown Dooms Clemson In OT
alextig
AU averaged less than 17 points allowed per game...
MDT1GER
Re: AU averaged less than 17 points allowed per game...
Texas Tiger
Re: AU averaged less than 17 points allowed per game...
sambacker0070
You do realize that CU***
Razzmatazz
You do realize that CU's defense was ranked higher...
Razzmatazz
Would you mind not showing up after a bowl loss?
Mugg®
I see you just joined Tigernet today do us all a favor....
milfordcttiger®
My only gripe is that the running game usually opens up
TheRawPaw®
Re: My only gripe is that the running game usually opens up
Tigertalk64
Re: Late Auburn Touchdown Dooms Clemson In OT
icebucket
i knew he was gonna run it...
chrisCUfan
if you think the play calling was fine
ATLtiger40
Harper missed SEVERAL deep TD throws
mrgrant
The play calling was terrible
CUFan15
Re: The play calling was terrible
tonybenson62003
Re: The play calling was terrible
AL4CU®
good post but one thing...
mrgrant
Re: The play calling was terrible
Cookster22
Re: The play calling was terrible
TigersBabesnBeer
Play calling better, but why call 7-of-10 runs on 1st down?
Razzmatazz
Re: I can't believe I'm about to say this, but...
hunter61
Fire Coach Rob Spence!!!!
tjh188
Re: Fire Coach Rob Spence!!!!
BIG ORANGE
Re: Fire Coach Rob Spence!!!!
tjh188
Fake WR screen play
Rhymedog56®
Re: Fire Coach Rob Spence!!!!
timothyyeargin
Re: Late Auburn Touchdown Dooms Clemson In OT
mlworsham
Execute Plays not Execute Spence and the "KISS"
mlworsham
Re: Execute Plays not Execute Spence and the "KISS"
deleted
Re: Execute Plays not Execute Spence and the "KISS"
mlworsham
Re: Execute Plays not Execute Spence and the "KISS"
mlworsham
Re: Execute Plays not Execute Spence and the "KISS"
deleted
Did Davis force Spence to call a run-heavy game & kiss bye?
Razzmatazz
Re: Did Davis force Spence to call a run-heavy game & kiss bye?
mlworsham
Auburn playing dirty
Cookster22
Re: Auburn playing dirty
JVTiger
Chop block could cause career ending injury but no ejection?***
Razzmatazz
Did anyone else think that Kelly...
mrshirls

WATCH: Watson scores first TD in Houston

Clemson golfer advances to U.S. Amateur finals

Big plays mark final stadium scrimmage

Scrimmage Insider: Venables not pleased after offense has strong day

WATCH: Richard 'really looking forward to gameday'

WATCH: Swinney after Saturday's scrimmage

Muse on Etienne: "He is a tough guy to tackle"

WATCH: Bryant says Etienne 'is making plays'

Feaster on RBs: "Everybody ran well today"
Sign Up for E-Mail News Alerts
Features
Updates
Daily Digest