CLEMSON - An advertisement on the Death Valley scoreboard lauds Clemson as
"The Talk of the Town in 2002."
After last week's disappointing loss to Virginia, most of that talk wasn't
good. Local sports talk radio was inundated with fans upset at everything
from play calling to personnel, and even a few radicals who wanted to see
head coach Tommy Bowden fired.
Following Saturday's 31-23 win over Wake Forest the mood had changed
slightly, though concerns were still evident.
"It seems like they were continuing from the Virginia game for the first
three quarters," said Joe from Easley, calling on a car phone. "When they got
the crowd into it, they seemed to play better. And scoring right before the
half was big there, too."
"It's a great win, any win's big. But I'm still concerned about motivation,"
said Sterling, also on car phone heading back to Atlanta. "They came out flat
and played that way for a long time. When the fourth quarter rolled around
they were fine. How can the team not get motivated when they're 3-3 and
fighting for their life in the ACC race? I don't see it coming from the top.
At some point the coach has to step in and come up with something to get them
NEED A MAP?
Bernard Rambert's second-half touchdown run (2 yards) was just his second
score of the season, his first since the season-opening loss at Georgia.
Rambert missed three games with tendonitis in his foot, then did not play in
the second half of last week's loss to Virginia due to bruised ribs.
"It's been a while since I got into the end zone," he said. "It felt good
being in there and being able to put my team into position to win the game."
STATS LIE, PART II
In keeping with a recent trend, here's another example of why statistics can
mean absolutely nothing in determining the outcome of a football game.
Wake Forest outgained Clemson 523-280 Saturday at Death Valley. The Deacs
outrushed the Tigers 365-72, doubled Clemson's rushing attempts 64-32, and
won the time of possession battle 31:59 to 28:01. They also had almost twice
as many kick return yards 115-64, and had more third down conversions than
But Wake Forest also led in a pair of dubious categories - turnovers (5-0),
and penalties and penalty yardage (14-125 to 7-56).
The 523 yards allowed is the most ever in a Clemson victory.
- Willie Simmons' 13-yard touchdown run in the first quarter was the first of
- Holder Jeff Scott has now run the fake field goal five times in his career
for a total or 48 yards;
- The five turnovers forced by Clemson was a season high, and the most since
it forced five against Missouri in 2000, a span of 29 games. Saturday also
marked the first time this season the Tigers' offense did not commit a
- Wake Forest's Tarence Williams reached the 2,000-yard career rushing mark
with a two-yard run on the final play of the first quarter. Later, he moved
into a tie for fourth place on the Deacs all-time career touchdown list with
Anthony Williams and Brian Piccolo;
- The announced attendance of 81,000 was the largest at Death Valley so far
- Saturday was the first time that a Tommy Bowden Clemson team has won when
behind entering the fourth quarter. The Tigers previously were 0-11 in those