Sunday Armchair Perspective: Unrecognized Improvement

Normally, this armchair perspective is a somewhat humorous look at the previous day’s game. However, after doing my usual morning cursory perusal of the post game comments pertaining to last night’s Clemson win, I’m sad but I’m not surprised.

Many fans are still comparing this team team to previous years and this is just wrong, in my opinion. This team is different and in many ways, not all bad.

First, I’ve read several comments that stated the only reason Clemson won is because Louisville quarterback, Malik Cunningham got hurt. What? To make such a statement is at best, shortsighted, at worst, silly. The absurdity of such a statement is this, no one has given this Clemson team a pass on the apocalyptic number of injuries they’ve endured this season.

As the Tigers know well, injuries, no matter what position, can change things a bit. Plus, Cunningham returned and led his team down the field to be in a position to win but was stopped. Any victory, especially in this season, should be celebrated not commiserated.

I’ve been a vocal criticizer of those that segregate Clemson fans into good/bad, real/fake groups. However, it’s easy, after reading some folks comments, to feel the need to have such a separation. This year’s team is not a great team, anyone that has watched each game should know this, but this team just might be one of the scrappiest, most prideful groups to take the field wearing the Paw.

The improvement in the offense was clearly visible to those willing to see. No, unlike past great teams, this group made it look hard, because it was hard. One need only look at the never quit attitude of the defense and now, this offense for inspiration. If you look through willing eyes, at the real improvement shown, you have to be a little impressed. This offense, moved down the field in approximately one minute to score. This offense had zero turnovers, scored 30 points, looked motivated and yes, confident. Most importantly, they looked happy and for the first time in forever, looked to be having fun.

I believe, while it’s taken much longer than anyone could have imagined, this team is improving. This team, highly criticized, has faced many obstacles and have overcome most. If you expect to see Trevor Lawrence in the backfield, you’re looking in the wrong direction. You’re looking in the past not the future, turn your minds eye forward. In doing so, you won’t miss the obvious heart of this beleaguered, much maligned group. It’s not fair to place past greatness as a yearly demand, not just an expectation but again, a demand.

I’m not chiding anyone, be whatever kind of fan you wish because all are accepted here in the Clemson Family. I am questioning how anyone could watch the same game many others watched and come away with little more than criticism and left-handed compliments. Maybe some are just never going to be happy? It’s your choice and it’s clear. Either look backward to see the past and continue to compare this team to others and be miserable, or look forward to see the small but undeniable improvement week-to -week and be hopeful.

There is enough misery in our world today, right outside our door and sure, this season at times has seemed miserable. But not last night. It was a good, much appreciated victory, on the road in a hostile environment. With their backs against the wall, something amazing happened, the Clemson Tigers won. Enough said.

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2 thoughts on “Sunday Armchair Perspective: Unrecognized Improvement

  1. Jason, you said exactly what I was feeling and thinking. Thank you. You’re a bigger shaper of thought than you realize.

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