Thursday, July 27, 2006

State of the ACC: Weak or strong?

We'll let you decide after reading a couple of articles.

Tom Sorensen of the Charlotte Observer says thank God for the newcomers, while league commissioner John Swofford says everything is hunky-dory and only getting better.

As for myself, I think they could both be right, to an extent.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

This year, Tigers should really run the ball

We've been promised a balanced offensive attack for a while at Clemson, but this year, we might actually have one. Read all about it.

* Bowden loves instant replay: As well he should.

* Pro-style training camp: Clemson may switch its fall workouts to one-a-day sessions to better prepare for a season that begins with 11 straight games before a break.

* Boston College a make-or-break game? That's what Bart Wright of The Greenville News says, and I agree.

* ACC now among the elite? Well, that's what this article says.

* New bowl process: The ACC has taken the much-needed step of improving the way league teams get assigned to postseason bowl games.

* A late Cumbiegate update: From the Sporting News.

* Looking back to 1981: Former Clemson coach Danny Ford still holds fond memories of the Tigers' 1981 national championship. This season marks the 25th anniversary of the momentous event.

* Clemson-FSU a game to watch: Well, it always is, but now it has the added cachet of being designated as such by Every Day Should Be Saturday.

* And finally ...: Check out the 2006 college football all-name team. Clemson's Ray Ray McElrathbey made the first team. (Hat tip to EDSBS.)

Monday, July 24, 2006

And now, genuine football preview stories!!

The ACC media confab is going on this week, and so there are some actual stories worth linking to for a change.

* Tigers picked No. 2 in Atlantic Division: Miami is expected to take the division. They're expected to face off against Florida State in the ACC title game.

* High hopes at Clemson: The Tigers could be poised for a great season, though we've heard that before. (More here, here, here and here.)

* Gaines Adams -- superstar: Clemson's highly touted defensive end is featured in stories here and here.

* Stuckey's ready to move: Receiver Chansi Stuckey is profiled here.

* Recruiting update: Clemson has apparently offered a scholarship to John Richt, the son of Georgia football coach Mark Richt. Maybe he can work to get the Tigers and Dawgs to play more often than once in a blue moon.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Cumbiegate: Um, like, never mind

Clemson freshman Jamie Cumbie has "clarified" his statements about negative recruiting tactics being used by Notre Dame.

Clarified, as in, basically denying what he told the Charleston Post & Courier.

OK, let's move on to football now, shall we?

Thursday, July 20, 2006

New recruiting shenanigans against Clemson?

First there was Spillergate, in which Clemson officials alleged some dirty dealing by Florida's football staff in the recruiting of C.J. Spiller. Now, there's, um, Cumbiegate?

It seems that Clemson signee Jamie Cumbie, who chose the Tigers over Notre Dame, kept getting the hard sell from the Irish even after he had verbally committed to Clemson. In fact, Notre Dame allegedly said some really nasty things about the little school from the Upstate.

I called B.S. on Clemson whining about the Spillergate nonsense, but to me, this seems to have a little more substance behind it, despite the fact that it's not even close to being an NCAA violation.

First of all, it's Cumbie talking to the media, not the coaching staff. (If you recall from Spillergate, it was the coaching staff who leaked the flimsy allegations, and Spiller had to step up a couple of days later and say the whole thing was much ado about nothing.) Secondly, it comes on the heels of Gamecock recruit Gary Gray suddenly backing out of his commitment so he could sign with the Irish, so chalk it up to one of those things that make you go hmmmm.

* Tommy Bowden, do something! That's the thrust of this column from The Sporting News on how Clemson's coach hasn't exactly been a world-beater during his time in Tigertown. Now, some commenters on Tigernet's message boards were upset by the comments from "an ACC coach," but who can deny that Bowden has been a serious underachiever during his tenure? And no, I don't think you can chalk that up to Clemson fans having unreasonable expectations. But when you lose to Wake Forest on a fairly consistent basis and have to scramble to make a bowl nearly every year despite having plenty of talented players, it kind of leaves a bad taste.

* We're No. 24: The Tuscaloosa News ranks Clemson's football program as the 24th best in college football history. That sounds pretty good to me.

* The smaller the Berry: Clemson offensive lineman Barry Richardson has trimmed down and bulked up. Kinda what I want to do.

* Tigers in the NFL: As of this moment, there are 25 former Clemson players on NFL rosters.

* Uniform rankings: The Sporting Gnomes find a site that ranks Clemson's uniforms fifth in the ACC. Our helmets get much love, but it seems that the rest of the ensemble left a bad taste.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

In memoriam of a great Tiger -- Bob Brooks

You're probably aware by now that Clemson graduate Bob Brooks, the founder of the Hooters restaurant chain, died the other day. And you're probably aware of Brooks' contributions to the world of men watching football, drinking beer, eating wings and ogling scantily clad women. But a lot of people might not be aware of Brooks' other contributions to the world. EDSBS gets the main part right, and here's a press release from Clemson University on other things Brooks did to make the world a better place.

* Clemson -- BCS bound? According to this article, it's possible, thanks to "BCS Summer" on campus. And here's a Clemson preview from a sharp-looking new website, Just College football. (Hat tip: College Football Resource.)

* Tiger transferring: Disappointing defensive end Xavier Littleberry, who last made headlines for waving his pee-pee at a woman prior to the Champs Sports Bowl, is transferring to South Carolina State.

* Catching up with ...: Former Clemson and NFL great Michael Dean Perry, brother of William "Refrigerator" Perry.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

And now, a post about the upcoming season!

I'm feeling lazy, so here are a bunch of links about Clemson's 2006 season.

* C.J. Spiller is ready to run for the Tigers.

* Whatever else we do this year, we certainly should be able to run the hell out of the ball.

* Yes, star prep quarterback Willy Corn really will enroll in Clemson early.

* Clemson is poised to be great this year. Read why. And read more here. And see what the AJC's Tony Barnhart has to say about the Tigers' chances. And Matt Hayes of The Sporting News likes us, too.

* Clemson coach Tommy Bowden answers some questions here.

* Mass hysteria! Tigers and Gamecocks, living together.

* Woody Hayes punching Clemson's Charlie Bauman in the 1978 Gator Bowl: See the video here, and see how it ranked among the all-time-worst moments in sports here.

* And finally, here are some of the most bizarre moments in Clemson football history. Enjoy.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

More on the NCAA angle in JetSki tragedy

The Anderson Independent Mail has a story on the possible NCAA penalties that could be handed down in the aftermath of the death of track coach Jarrett Foster and the involvement of two Clemson football players in a JetSki accident.

Again, I think that it is completely inappropriate to be writing about possible NCAA sanctions at this time. Even if it were judged to be a violation, I can't imagine that it would lead to anything stronger than a warning letter.

Why is the media pushing this story?

My one hope is that this tragic affair will push Clemson's football team to come together and resolve to make 2006 a truly special season. That could be happening already.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Sweet Jesus: Fatal accident an NCAA VIOLATION?????

I was about to post something about this story, but the lads at Every Day Should Be Saturday beat me to it.

However, I disagree with the direction EDSBS seems to want to push this. As stated in the story, one of the boosters in question was good friends with the coach who got killed, and it has been widely reported that the coach was friends with one of the players involved. That would seem to satisfy the NCAA's "pre-existing relationship" requirement, and would invalidate EDSBS' comment about "message board gnomes pulling the 'best friend of hairdresser's third cousins' Clemson AD's pet' connection bit."

In other words, I don't think these boosters were walking around campus and inviting random Clemson athletes to take JetSki rides.

Either way, I question the timing of this story. A man is dead, and a young athlete will have to come to grips with a lifetime of guilt. Yanking a future scholarship, or putting a letter in someone's personnel file, seems petty at this point.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Football player involved in Jet Ski death

Some tragic news out of Tigertown. Assistant track coach Jarrett Foster was killed Saturday night in a Jet Ski accident on Lake Keowee, apparently after being hit by a Jet Ski driven by Clemson offensive lineman Roman Fry. Read all about it here.

My heart goes out to all the families involved in this tragedy.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Clemson: Bound for Jacksonville?

So opines The Greenville News, in a piece that carries no byline but looks to be the work of Bart Wright. And here's another piece that suggests the Tigers could be the team to beat in the ACC this year.

* Smokin': Seven Clemson athletes tested positive for marijuana last year. Is that all? Clearly, we can do better in this area, especially considering Clemson's proximity to the mountains of North Carolina.