Clemson might have won 10 games for the 11th straight season in 2021, but there is no denying the Tigers didn’t get the production that most were expecting coming into the season.
In his first season as the full-time starter, former 5-star talent DJ Uiagalelei had his share of struggles, throwing more interceptions than touchdowns. How much injuries factored into that is anyone’s guess, but the bottom line is, if Clemson wants to be a playoff caliber team in 2022, they need more production from the quarterback.
“I think everyone can sit here and say that the quarterback position is going to have to be better. That’s not a knock, it’s not being rude, it just is what it is,” ACCN analyst Eric Mac Lain said on the schedule reveal show. “And when you have the most important position on the field not meeting the level of expectation that has been set by others, you see a ‘down’ year.”
Looking ahead to next season, Clemson will have something it did not have in 2021. That is a 5-star talent, waiting in the wings.
Cade Klubnik, the top-rated quarterback in the country, is on the roster now and will participate in spring practice. If Uiagalelei’s struggles continue into next season, there will be another option.
“So, for Clemson to be able to get back to where they expect to be, where they want to be, where the fans want to be, something is going to have to happen at the quarterback position,” Mac Lain said. “Whether it’s DJ Uiagalalei increasing his play to the flashes that we saw in 2020, or is it a change? Is someone else going to make the most of their opportunity and be able to get Clemson back to where they need to be?”
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