National Tragedy Postpones Clemson Events; Duke Game in Limbo


by - Correspondent -
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CLEMSON - The terrorist attacks Tuesday which leveled the World Trade Center
towers in New York City and severely damaged the Pentagon in Washington have
prompted athletic event postponements both at Clemson and around the Atlantic
Coast Conference.


The ACC has postponed all athletic activity at member schools through
Thursday, while Clemson will take it a step further and postpone events
through Friday.


In addition, ACC members will hold a teleconference Wednesday to discuss the
status of national affairs, then make a decision whether to play Saturday's
college football games.


"We are deeply saddened by the tragic events of (Tuesday)," ACC Commissioner
John Swofford said in a statement. "All nine ACC member institutions are in
agreement that the next couple of days should be a time for reflection and
prayer for the families of those who are involved in this tragedy. Our
concerns are for the safety of our participants and fans, both in travel and
in assembly, and respect for the aftermath of these terrible events.


"We will continue to seek advice and counsel from our schools and state,
local and national authorities in regards to other future scheduled events."


During his weekly press conference Tuesday morning, Clemson head coach Tommy
Bowden found it hard to focus on football.


"Right now the game is kind of insignificant and minute compared to what's
gone on ...," he said. "It's difficult to concentrate and comment on a game
during a national tragedy for thousands and thousands of people. Our prayers
go out to the families. It's unprecedented in this country.


"I have been around a disaster (a hurricane in New Orleans while coaching at
Tulane) where it caused disorganization and we had to deal with it, but
nothing like the life and death situation we have (now). Nothing compares to
this."


Clemson events affected by the decision are the Wednesday home volleyball
match with South Carolina, the women's soccer match at North Carolina the
same evening, and the Duke at Clemson men's soccer match on Friday.


All will be made up at yet-to-be determined future dates.


Included in the ACC postponements are the Ohio at N.C. State and Penn State
at Virginia football games scheduled for Thursday. The Ohio-N.C.State game
will be made up at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 24.


No new date has been set for the Penn State-Virginia game.


Meanwhile, Bowden said he would talk with his players about the terrorist
attacks, though he wasn't comfortable with the idea.


"'I am not an expert on addressing this kind of issue with the team," he
said. "There are a lot of other coaches with a lot more wisdom than I have on
addressing disasters with teams. There's a fine line you walk when you deal
with what has happened...because if you try to minimize this situation it
looks like you have no compassion.


"(But) I will address them to some extent before practice."

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