Over the bye week staff writer Sam Clemons counts down the ten of the most iconic games the Tigers have played during his lifetime.
No 1: Clemson vs. Notre Dame. “B.Y.O.G. game.”
While the game itself was an instant classic, it was the conditions that the game was played in that made this one iconic. In spite of Hurricane Joaquin’s might and flooding everywhere, this game went forward.
There are three images of that game that are forever ingrained in my memory. The first, the soaking wet Clemson head cheerleader, microphone in hand, in pelting rain, arms raised to the heavens almost defiantly, that embodied that game. Second, after the stop on the two-point conversion, Ben Boulware running, falling forward to do a tumble in exhalation. The third is Dabo Swinney’s postgame interview. Man oh man…what a night.
Notre Dame was ranked sixth, Clemson was ranked No. 12 and both teams were 3-0. After the Tigers took a 21-3 lead going into the fourth quarter, it seemed pretty clear that the Irish would be going home with their first loss of the season. Then Notre Dame roared back with three fourth-quarter touchdowns, the last coming with seven seconds left in the game to close Clemson’s lead to 24-22. On the two-point try, Clemson defensive tackle Carlos Watkins stopped Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer to preserve the win. The Irish finished the season 10-3, while Clemson went 14-1, losing 45-41 to Alabama in the national title game.
This one was filled with Iconic moments, ending with creation of a never to be forgotten “Daboism.” In his post-game interview he said he had told the team in his pre-game speech “We give you an education, books, food, clothes and housing but tonight, this is B.Y.O.G. Bring your own guts. We can’t give you that to you, you’ve got to bring your own!”
And the rest as they say is history.
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