Saturday, January 03, 2004

(UPDATED at 4:03 p.m.)

Peach Bowl was a landmark win, no matter how you slice it

It's one of the few victories over a Top 10 team in school history and it will almost certainly see us ranked in the final Top 25 poll. I agree with the ESPN commentator last night who said Clemson should be a preseason Top 15 team next year.

Anyway, on the media coverage.

GAME STORIES: "We're back," says The State; "Tigers win a Peach," says the Greenville News; "Rocky flop in Atlanta," says the Knoxville News-Sentinel; "Vols continue embarrassment in Peach Bowl," says The Tennessean.

THE STATS: Here's a complete statistical summary of the game.

COLUMNS & COMMENTARY: The State's Ron Morris says the Peach Bowl win bodes well for the future of Clemson's program, and Bart "Bandwagon" Wright of the Greenville News says the Tigers have turned the page. David Climer of The Tennessean comments on how bad Clemson made Tennessee look. John Adams of the Knoxville News-Sentinel has a good column on the mystery that was the Vols' No. 6 ranking:

Clemson didn't just beat the Vols. It put their six-game, regular-season winning streak in perspective. The Vols beat only one winning team in that stretch and they struggled against both Alabama and Duke, which combined to lose 17 games.

The sixth-ranked Vols felt they deserved better than the Peach Bowl. They were snubbed by the Bowl Championship Series.

At least in UT's case, the BCS knew what it was doing.


ROCKY TOP MELTDOWN: Tennessee, in addition to being outplayed, lost its cool. (More here.) Especially satisfying was seeing linebacker Kevin Burnett rack up 30 yards of unsportsmanlike penalties in the fourth quarter for a late hit and subsequent taunting. Burnett had made several provocative statements at a pregame press conference in Atlanta. And check this out: Burnett blames the refs for the loss!

The following is posted without comment:

Burnett is one of Tennessee's captains...

THAT SNEAKY PLAY: The fumblerooskie-type play that produced a second-quarter touchdown for Clemson has worked before. (More here and here.)

DERRICK HAMILTON -- NATION'S BEST PLAYER? That's the opinion of one former coach, according to this article on Clemson's top receiver.

JASMIN RUNS WILD: Running back Chad Jasmin had a great game.

TRICKERATION: Clemson's offense fooled Tennessee's defense, and Tennessee's deviation from its pregame offensive plan fooled some of the Vols' players.

KEYS & REPORT CARDS: The State has its keys to victory and that high five thingee. The Knoxville News-Sentinel has a best & worst from the game. The Tennessean hands out a report card.

HOUSE OF HORRORS: Once again, the Vols stunk it up in the Georgia Dome.

WHOSE ORANGE IS THE REAL ORANGE?I think that's been decided, but it's still something for the fans to talk about.

NOTEBOOKS: Here, here and here.

ACC GOES 5-1: Georgia Tech crushed Tulsa 52-10 in the Humanitarian Bowl. With that victory, the ACC improved to 5-1 in postseason play and should clinch ESPN's Bowl Challenge Cup.

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