Davis Runs Clemson To Victory
Clemson closed out the 2005 football season with 19-10 victory over the Colorado Buffaloes in the Champs Sports Bowl. The Tigers got off to a slow start in the first half, but rode the legs of freshman James Davis to victory once again in the second half.
The Tigers went into halftime with 6-3 lead on two field goals by Jad Dean. Dean was nursing a knee injury, but he was solid nevertheless for the Tigers. Penalties and an inability to run the ball in the redzone kept the Tigers out of the endzone.
The approach in the second half was very similar to the plan the Tigers executed in the regular season finale against South Carolina. The plan was to ride the young legs of Davis, and Davis delivered once again.
On the Tigers’ first possession, Davis raced 40 yards down the sidelines to put the Tigers in scoring position. It was the longest run of the year for Davis. On third down from the six yard line, senior quarterback Charlie Whitehurst scrambled to the endzone to put the Tigers up 13-3.
The Tigers defense had been dominating the entire game. Defensive ends Gaines Adams and Charles Bennett combined for 3 sacks on backup quarterback James Cox. The Buffs did find the endzone midway through the fourth quarter to cut the Tigers lead to 13-10.
The Tigers’ offense had their backs against the wall, and they would answer. The Tigers were without Chansi Stuckey, who left the game with a head injury. On third down, Whitehurst found redshirt freshman wide receiver Aaron Kelly for a big play. Kelly made multiple defenders miss as he put the Tigers in scoring position.
Fittingly, Davis would seal the deal for the Tigers. Davis scored his only touchdown of the game from six yards out to put the Tigers ahead 19-10. After the game, Davis was named MVP, and Whitehurst gave on final curtain call to the Tiger faithful.