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This past weekend’s sweep of FSU was big for several reasons. First, it won the Atlantic Division. Second, it gave the Tigers a two game lead over UNC for the overall top-seed in the ACC tournament. Third, in my opinion it wrapped up a regional and super-regional if the Tigers were to advance. It also got them closer to 40 wins.
This weekend sent a message to the league the same way the Miami series did last season. Clemson is the hottest team in the league at the plate.
Demmink is back on track after moving to the DH role full time and had six hits against the Noles. Brad Chalk has a 10-game hitting streak. Marquez Smith continued his hot streak by pounding the Seminoles pitching all weekend with five hits and a ton of RBIs. Andy D’Alessio has been nominated for national player-of-the-week honors after hitting the ball hard once again and had four hits including a bomb on Sunday. Taylor Harbin seems to have gotten his stroke back. He led the Tigers with seven hits vs. FSU.
Travis Storrer added six hits on the weekend.
For the series Clemson out scored FSU 24-6 and out hit the Noles 40-18. The pitching staff had a 1.64 ERA and did not allow a homer. It also did not allow a single run after the fourth inning in any of the six games. The staff held Seminole All-American Shane Robinson to 1-8 for the weekend.
Clemson defense was outstanding including two runners cut down at the plate in Sunday’s game.
The series improved Clemson’s home record in the ACC to 12-0.
One last note, 15,390 fans took in the three-game set this weekend at Doug Kingsmore Stadium.
I think most would agree that the tradition and history of Florida State and Miami football and baseball programs are as strong as any in the country.
The Noles and Canes have combined for 11 national titles in the two sports.
In 2005-06 academic year so far, Clemson is 7-1 against the two Sunshine State powers in those two sports.
Clemson had Jeff Ogren graduate early from high school and enter school at Clemson in January. This allows the student-athlete to get acclimated to school and football six months before the other incoming freshmen.
This is a trend that has grown in popularity. In the BCS conferences over the last three years, we have seen the number of players decided to go the early entry route increase from 34 in 2004 to 35 in 2005 to 54 in 2006.
Quarterback is the one position we see more kids decide to graduate early.
Stay tuned this week, as we will try to interview Clemson commitment Willy Korn about his future plans on the subject.
ACC and APR
The academic progress report is a hot topic in the NCAA. The APR determines the success rate of your student athletes in their quest for their degrees.
Last week USA Today sent out the top 25 in college football from their final poll and re-ranked them in terms of their APR. Clemson and the ACC did very well. Here is the top 25 in terms of football APR:
# School (Final Poll Rank) APR
1. Boston Col (17) 982
2. Auburn (14) 981
3. Florida (16) 966
4. Florida St (23) 959
5. Penn State (3) 957
6. Miami, Fla. (18)956
7. TCU (9) 953
8. Louisville (20) 952
9. Georgia (10) 950
10. Notre Dame (11) 946
11. California (25) 945
12. Clemson (21) 940
13. LSU (5) 935
14. Va Tech (7) 935
15. Nebraska (24) 932
16. Texas (1) 931
17. Southern Cal(2) 929
18. Texas Tech (19) 928
19. Oklahoma (22) 928
20. West Va (6) 926
21. Ohio State (4) 925
22. Alabama (8) 916
23. UCLA (13) 915
24. Wisconsin (15) 914
25. Oregon (12) 900
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