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‘College Football’ Articles

National Championship Game: #1 LSU tackles defending champion #3 Clemson (Bayou Tigers game notes)

Mercedes Superdome By Nwill21 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

2020 College Football Playoff

Semifinals Championship
December 28 – Peach BowlMercedes-Benz StadiumAtlanta
1 LSU 63
4 Oklahoma 28 January 13 – National ChampionshipMercedes-Benz SuperdomeNew Orleans
1 LSU
December 28 – Fiesta BowlState Farm StadiumGlendale 3 Clemson
2 Ohio State 23
3 Clemson 29

 

LSU Tigers

14-0 Overall

SEC

Ed Orgeron, head coach

1 AP Poll 1 Coaches Poll 1 College Football Playoff

TO GET TO THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

ATLANTA — LSU dominated the contest from the start.

Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Joe Burrow tied an NCAA record with seven first-half touchdown passes, as top-ranked LSU imposed its will on No. 4 Oklahoma to advance to the College Football Playoff National Championship, 63-28, in the 2019 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

LSU (14-0) earned its first College Football Playoff National Championship berth in the sixth season of the current format. The Tigers will face No. 3-seed Clemson in the title game scheduled for Jan. 13 at 7 p.m. CT in New Orleans. LSU has won three football national championships (1958, 2003, 2007).

Burrow, who won virtually every major college football award earlier this month, finished 29-of-39 passing for 493 yards and an SEC-record tying seven touchdowns – all in the first half. He added another rushing touchdown in the second half, as LSU built a 49-14 halftime advantage and never looked back.

With 71 passing touchdowns in two seasons in Baton Rouge, Burrow also passed Tommy Hodson (1986-89) for LSU’s career record.

The Tigers outgained Oklahoma (12-2), 692-322, and set countless program postseason, Peach Bowl, New Year’s Six and CFP records along the way.

LSU held Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts to 15-of-31 passing for 217 yards with an interception. Hurts ran 14 times for 43 yards and two touchdowns. Wide receiver CeeDee Lamb led the Sooners with four catches for 119 yards including a 51-yard reception.

LSU’s road to the national championship game hasn’t come easy, as the Tigers recorded a record sixth victory over an AP Top-10 opponent in 2019.

LSU IN THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS HISTORY

LSU defeated Georgia in the SEC Championship Game on December 7, and received a bid to the Peach Bowl with the release of final CFP rankings on December 8. The Tigers defeated Oklahoma, 63–28, in the CFP semifinal Peach Bowl on December 28, which was LSU’s first CFP semifinal appearance. The Tigers enter the championship game with a 14–0 record (8–0 in conference). LSU’s most recent loss was to Texas A&M on November 24, 2018; a seven overtime contest. This is LSU’s first appearance in a CFP National Championship game; their last national championship game appearance was a loss to Alabama in the 2012 BCS National Championship Game.

GAME PREVIEW

NEW ORLEANS — Twelve years since its most recent national championship – and in the same city where it’s finished all three title-winning seasons – No. 1 LSU looks to cap off a perfect campaign in the College Football Playoff National Championship, as the 14-0 Tigers take on No. 3 Clemson in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

LSU is on the verge of completing a historic season which already includes six top-10 wins, an SEC Championship, and a Chick-fil-a Peach Bowl title. A win over Clemson would establish a new record for top-10 victories in a season and would mark LSU’s third-straight win over a top-five foe away from home, following wins over Georgia in the SEC Championship Game and Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl.

Leading LSU’s charge has been a record-setting offense highlighted by Heisman winning quarterback Joe Burrow. Burrow, who won the award by the widest margin in its history, has completed 371-of-478 (77.6%) of his passes this season, with 55 touchdowns – including a CFP record seven in the first half of the Tigers’ win over Oklahoma – and just six interceptions. He could set the national mark for completion percentage and passing touchdowns (Burrow needs three to tie Colt Brennan’s record of 58 and four to break it) on Monday.

Burrow is armed with a number of targets, including three receivers who have already matched or surpassed the previous LSU record for touchdown catches in a season, which stood at 12 before the 2019 campaign. Biletnikoff winner and Unanimous All-American Ja’Marr Chase (75 catches, 1,559 yards, 18 touchdowns) and Justin Jefferson (102 catches, 1,404 yards, 18 touchdowns) share the national lead with 18 scores, while sophomore Terrace Marshall Jr. (43 catches, 625 yards, 12 touchdowns in 11 games) ranks in the top five in the SEC.

Also powering the Tiger attack are running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (199 caries, 1,304 yards, 16 touchdowns) and tight end Thaddeus Moss (42 catches, 534 yards, 2 touchdowns). Both Moss and Edwards-Helaire (50 catches, 399 yards) set school records for receptions at their respective positions.

Paving the way up front is the best offensive line in the country. Led by center Lloyd Cushenberry III and right guard Damien Lewis – who is expected to play after picking up an injury against Oklahoma – the Tiger front five won the Joe Moore Award as the best offensive line in the country. They do the dirty work in front of an attack that ranks first nationally in scoring offense (48.9 points per game) and total offense (564.1 yards per game).

The LSU defense is playing its best football of the season in its last three games. Against two top-five opponents and an SEC rival, the Tigers have allowed just 182 passing yards per game and 76 rushing yards per game. Holding down the trenches is a six-man rotation of defensive linemen spearheaded by senior captain Rashard Lawrence.

On the edges, redshirt sophomore K’Lavon Chaisson is providing pressure on opposing offenses, with five sacks and 15 pressures in his last three games, both of which rank tops in the country over that stretch. Senior Michael Divinity Jr. will return to the lineup to offer more pressure off the edge, while linebackers Patrick Queen (77 tackles, 9.5 for loss) and Jacob Phillips (105 tackles) look to slow down Clemson’s run game.

The Tiger secondary has proven it’s the best in the country. Thorpe Award winner Grant Delpit and three-time SEC Defensive Player of the Week JaCoby Stevens (85 tackles, 8.5 for loss) anchor the back at safety, while all-Americans Kristian Fulton and Derek Stingley Jr. (21 passes defended, six interceptions) lock down the outside at cornerback. Nickel Kary Vincent Jr. has emerged as a stopper in the slot, as well, intercepting four passes for LSU.

 

GAME PREVIEW WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF LSU ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS

COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS INFORMATION COURTESY OF WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

College Football Bowl Season ends tonight with National Championship Game, #3 Clemson vs. #1 LSU (Orange Tigers game notes)

 

Mercedes-Benz Superdome By Nwill21, Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

 

2020 College Football Playoff

Semifinals Championship
December 28 – Peach BowlMercedes-Benz StadiumAtlanta
1 LSU 63
4 Oklahoma 28 January 13 – National ChampionshipMercedes-Benz SuperdomeNew Orleans
1 LSU
December 28 – Fiesta BowlState Farm StadiumGlendale 3 Clemson
2 Ohio State 23
3 Clemson 29

 

Clemson Tigers

14-0 overall

ACC

Dabo Swinney, head coach

AP Poll 3 Coaches Poll 3 College Football Playoff Poll 3

TO GET TO THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

Trevor Lawrence connected with Travis Etienne with 1:49 left in the fourth quarter to give No. 3 Clemson the lead and Nolan Turner intercepted Justin Fields in the endzone with 37 seconds remaining, as the Tigers (14-0) erased a 16-point first half deficit to defeat No. 2 Ohio State 29-23 in the Playstation Fiesta Bowl in the College Football Playoff on Saturday night, December 28, 2019.

Clemson heads to New Orleans, La. for a chance at its third College Football Playoff National Championship in four years. The Tigers face No. 1 LSU on Jan. 13 at 8 p.m. EST on ESPN. It is Clemson’s fourth national championship game appearance in five years.

The win extended Clemson’s nation’s-best 29-game winning streak. The Tigers trailed 16-0 in the first half before two touchdowns in the second quarter cut into the Buckeye lead to 16-14. Clemson scored a touchdown in the third quarter to take a 21-16 lead into the fourth quarter.

Lawrence completed 18-33 passes for 259 yards and two touchdowns. The sophomore ran for a career-high 107 yards, including a 67-yard touchdown run in the second quarter, the longest rush of his career. Lawrence also threw a touchdown pass in his 24th consecutive game, the longest active streak in the nation.

CLEMSON IN THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS HISTORY

Clemson defeated Virginia in the ACC Championship Game on December 7, and received a bid to the Fiesta Bowl with the release of final CFP rankings on December 8. On December 28, the Tigers defeated Ohio State in the CFP semifinal Fiesta Bowl, 29–23. Clemson also enters the championship game with a 14–0 record (8–0 in conference). The Tigers’ most recent loss was to Alabama in the CFP semifinal Sugar Bowl on January 1, 2018. Including national championship contests, this is Clemson’s ninth overall CFP game; they have a 6–2 record in prior CFP games, and are the defending champions, having defeated Alabama in the 2019 CFP National Championship.

GAME PREVIEW

The Clemson Tigers will attempt to earn their second straight title and their third championship in four years on Monday, Jan. 13, when they face the LSU Tigers in the College Football Playoff National Championship. Kickoff at Mercedes-Benz Superdome is set for 8 p.m. ET. Another Clemson championship would be Clemson’s fourth football title in school history, joining the 1981, 2016 and 2018 squads. Clemson enters the contest coming off of a thrilling semifinal performance in which the Tigers overcame a 16-0 first-half deficit to earn a 29-23 victory against No. 2 Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl. The victory was Clemson’s fifth-largest comeback in school history, the second-largest under Head Coach Dabo Swinney and its largest in postseason play. Ohio State outgained Clemson by 99 yards, snapping a streak of 28 consecutive games in which Clemson had outgained its opponent. The 28-game streak was Clemson’s longest on record, far surpassing a 16-game streak across the 1959-60 seasons. The victory was Clemson’s first in a game in which it was outgained since 2017 in a 38-31 victory against NC State in which Clemson was outgained by 76 yards. Quarterback Trevor Lawrence led the way, accounting for 259 passing yards and two passing touchdowns in addition to posting team and career highs in rushing attempts (16) and rushing yards (107). The victory improved Lawrence to 25-0 in his career as a starter. A victory in the College Football Playoff National Championship would be his 26th consecutive win to open his career, which would match Florida State’s Jameis Winston (26 in 2013-14) for the most consecutive victories to start a career by a starting quarterback in ACC history. While the quarterback led Clemson in rushing, it was running back Travis Etienne that led the Tigers in receiving yards, recording three catches for 98 yards and two receiving touchdowns, including the 34-yard gamewinner with 1:49 remaining in the game. The upcoming game in Louisiana against LSU could bear witness to one of the state’s native sons becoming the most prolific running back in Clemson history. Etienne, a native of Jennings, La., enters the contest with 3,960 career rushing yards, seven shy of breaking the school record of 3,966 set by Raymond Priester from 1994-97. Etienne is only 40 rushing yards away from becoming the ninth 4,000-yard rusher in ACC history.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR THIS WEEK – Clemson attempting to win its fourth football national championship in school history, joining the 1981, 2016 and 2018 squads. – Clemson attempting to become the first repeat national champions in the College Football Playoff era.

- Clemson attempting to become the first team to win back-to-back national championships since Alabama in 2011-12. – Clemson attempting to become the first team to win back-to-back national championships with a perfect record since 1994-95, when Nebraska won championships with records of 13-0 and 12-0 respectively. The only other schools to do so in the AP Poll era were Oklahoma (1955- 56), Army (1944-45) and Minnesota (1940-41). – Clemson attempting to become the third team in the NCAA’s list of consensus national champions since 1950 to win three national championships in four years, joining 2009-12 Alabama and 1994-97 Nebraska. Clemson would be the fourth team in the AP Poll era (since 1936) to do so, a list that also includes 1946-49 Notre Dame. – Clemson attempting to become the first school to win four national titles as members of the ACC. Pitt, Miami and Georgia Tech have won at least four national championships, but all of Pitt and Miami’s titles predated the schools joining the ACC, as did three of Georgia Tech’s four titles. – Clemson attempting to become the first team to win three national championships in the College Football Playoff era. – Clemson attempting to become only the third team since 2000 to win a national championship after entering the season ranked No. 1 in the AP Poll. Clemson would be the 12th team to accomplish the feat since 1950 (1951 Tennessee, 1952 Michigan State, 1956 Oklahoma, 1974 Oklahoma, 1975 Oklahoma, 1978 Alabama, 1985 Oklahoma, 1993 Florida State, 1999 Florida State, 2004 USC and 2017 Alabama). – Clemson attempting to earn a victory against the AP No. 1 team for the third time in school history to tie for the 14th-most wins against a top-ranked team in the poll’s history. Both of Clemson’s previous wins against the AP No. 1 came in College Football Playoff National Championships against Alabama (2016 and 2018). – Clemson attempting to defeat the top two teams in the AP Poll in consecutive games for the second time in four seasons, joining the 2016 season in which Clemson defeated No. 2-ranked (but third-seeded) Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl before beating an undefeated No. 1 seed out of the SEC West in the National Championship Game. – Two undefeated teams playing each other for the fourth time in College Football Playoff history. Clemson has been involved in — and won — all three previous matchups, including games last year in which 13-0 Clemson faced 12-0 Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl and 14-0 Clemson faced 14-0 Alabama in the College Football Playoff National Championship, as well as 13-0 Clemson’s win against 13-0 Ohio State in this year’s Fiesta Bowl. – Clemson playing the latest game in a season in school history. Previously, the latest Clemson had played in school history was on Jan. 11, 2016, in the College Football Playoff to conclude the 2015 season. Clemson also played the earliest game in school history this year, opening the season against Georgia Tech on Aug. 29, and the 137 elapsed days from the season opener to the season finale will represent the longest season in Clemson history. – Head Coach Dabo Swinney attempting to join College Football Hall of Famers Amos Alonzo Stagg (Chicago, 1896 and 1899) and George Woodruff (Penn, 1892 and 1897) as the only coaches in major college football history with multiple 15-win seasons to their credit. Swinney would become the first coach in major college football history to win 15 games in back-to-back seasons. – Clemson attempting to finish its seventh undefeated season (1900, 1906, 1948, 1950, 1981, 2018) and fifth perfect season (1900, 1948, 1981, 2018) in school history. – Clemson entering the game as the No. 3 seed behind top-seeded LSU. Lower-ranked seeds are 5-0 all-time in the College Football Playoff National Championship, including victories by No. 4 Ohio State (vs. No. 2 Oregon) in 2014, No. 2 Alabama (vs. No. 1 Clemson) in 2015, No. 2 Clemson (vs. No. 1 Alabama) in 2016, No. 4 Alabama (vs. No. 3 Georgia) in 2017 and No. 2 Clemson (vs. No. 1 Alabama) in 2018. – The No. 1 or No. 3 seed earning the College Football Playoff National Championship for the first time in the Playoff era. All five previous championships in the CFP era have been captured by the No. 2 (three times) or No. 4 (twice) seeds. – Clemson attempting to improve to 7-2 all-time in College Football Playoff games. Clemson’s seven alltime wins in the playoff would pass Alabama (six) for the most in CFP history. No school other than Clemson and Alabama has more than two. – Clemson attempting to win its fourth consecutive College Football Playoff game to break the longest CFP winning streak all-time (three by Alabama, twice, 2015- 16 and 2017-18, ended each time by Clemson). – Clemson attempting to improve to 26-20 all-time in bowl contests. – Clemson attempting to win a fourth consecutive bowl game to produce the third bowl winning streak of four games or more in program history (five from 1986-90, four from 2012-15). – Head Coach Dabo Swinney attempting to push his bowl record to 11-5 to tie Bobby Bowden (11-7) for the most bowl victories as an ACC coach. Bowden was 21-10- 1 all-time in bowls (with one vacated win), with Florida State being part of the ACC’s membership for the final 18 of those contests. – Clemson attempting to improve to 3-1 all-time in College Football Playoff National Championships. This will be Clemson’s first College Football Playoff National Championship Game against an opponent other than Alabama (2015, 2016 and 2018 seasons). – Clemson attempting to earn its first win in the state of Louisiana since 1981. Clemson is 3-8 alltime in Louisiana (and 3-7 in New Orleans), with all three victories coming in road regular season games against Tulane (1938, 1945 and 1981). A win would be Clemson’s first bowl win in Louisiana, as the Tigers are 0-3 in the state in postseason play all-time in two Sugar Bowl appearances and one Independence Bowl appearance. – Clemson attempting to even its all-time record against LSU at 2-2. – Clemson entering the game 10-1 against SEC competition since 2016, including a 6-1 record against SEC West squads in that span. – Clemson seeking its sixth consecutive victory against an SEC opponent, dating to the start of the 2018 season. A sixth consecutive victory against an SEC team would represent Clemson’s longest winning streak against SEC foes all-time. – Clemson attempting to improve to 23-0 against undefeated opponents since the start of the 2015 season.

- Clemson attempting to win its 13th game all-time against a team that entered the game with 10 or more wins. One of the 12 previous victories came in Clemson’s most recent meeting with LSU, a 25-24 win in the 2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl against the 10-2 Bayou Bengals. – Clemson tying a school and FBS modern era record with 15 wins this season, matching the 15 by Clemson’s 2018 squad. – The 2019 Clemson seniors attempting to win their 56th game to pass the 2018 Clemson and Alabama seniors for sole possession of the most victories in a four-year span in FBS history. – Clemson attempting to win its 30th consecutive game, dating to the start of the 2018 season, to take sole possession of the longest winning streak in ACC history by surpassing the 29 consecutive wins posted by the 2012-14 Florida State Seminoles. – Clemson attempting to post a 30-game winning streak to match the 1968-70 Texas Longhorns for the 11th-longest streak in FBS history. It would represent the first NCAA-recognized 30-game streak by an FBS team since Miami’s 34-game streak across the 2000- 03 seasons. (Note: USC won 34 consecutive games from 2003-05, but the NCAA does not recognize the streak after 14 of the victories were vacated.) – Clemson (29) attempting to add to the longest winning streak in school history in any sport. The next closest streaks in the history of Clemson Athletics were 26-game/match streaks posted by baseball (1977) and men’s tennis (1968-70). – Clemson attempting to improve its record in night games since 2015 to 33-3. – Clemson entering the game as the only team in the country with 12 wins against Power Five opponents this season. Clemson’s 2018 team was the only team since 2000 to earn 13 wins against Power Five teams (including Notre Dame), a feat Clemson’s 2019 team can match with another win. – Clemson entering the game with a 33.8-point scoring margin this season, 1.5 points shy of the school record established in John Heisman’s first season at Clemson in 1900 (+35.3). – Clemson attempting to earn its 23rd victory in its last 25 games against top-25 teams since the start of the 2015 season. Clemson is presently 10-2 against AP Top 10 opponents since 2015, including victories in seven of the last eight games against AP Top 10 teams. – Clemson entering the game 10-1 against teams in the final College Football Playoff Top 25 rankings since 2017. During Clemson’s run of five consecutive seasons with a College Football Playoff berth, Clemson is 21-2 against teams in the final CFP Top 25 rankings.

- Clemson attempting to win its sixth consecutive neutral site contest to push Clemson to 10-1 at neutral sites since 2016. – Clemson seeking its 40th victory in its last 43 games away from home. – Clemson attempting to win its eighth game away from home this season to tie school records set by the 2016 and 2018 squads. – Head Coach Dabo Swinney attempting to improve to 18-6 in games played in NFL stadiums. – Clemson attempting to record 600 yards of offense for a sixth time to add to its current single-season school record for 600-yard games (five). Clemson’s five 600-yard games are the most by an ACC team in a season since 2000. – Clemson (two) needing one more 400-yard rushing game in 2019 to break the school record for 400-yard rushing games in a season (two each by the 1950, 1992 and 2018 squads). – Clemson (four) rushing for 300 yards in a fifth game this season to tie the school record for 300-yard rushing games in a single season (five each in 1950, 1978 and 2018). – Clemson attempting to rush for multiple touchdowns in a 16th consecutive game for the first time in school history. The current 15-game streak is tied with the 2016-17 seasons for the longest in school annals. – Clemson attempting to win the turnover margin in 10 consecutive games for the first time under Head Coach Dabo Swinney. Clemson’s current nine-game streak is tied with 2017 Miami for the longest streak in the ACC over the last 15 years, according to ESPN Stats & Info. – Clemson attempting to win the turnover margin for a 12th time this season, adding to the most such games in a season under Head Coach Dabo Swinney. – Clemson sporting a plus-16 margin in turnovers this season, tied with the 1950 team for the seventh-best mark in school history. – Clemson entering the contest with 30 takeaways on the season, tied with the 2009 and 2013 squads for the most under Head Coach Dabo Swinney. Clemson has not exceeded 30 takeaways in a season since posting 34 in 1990. – Clemson attempting to produce a takeaway for a 10th consecutive game and for the 18th time in 19 games, dating to 2018. – Clemson attempting to pick off multiple passes in three straight games for the first time since games 11-13 of the 2017 season. – Clemson entering the game with 19 interceptions on the year. Two more interceptions would move the 2019 squad into a tie for fifth-most in school history and tie the 2009 squad for the most under Head Coach Dabo Swinney. – Clemson entering the game having turned the ball over zero times in six out of its last seven games. A fourth consecutive turnover-free game would be a first for Clemson under Dabo Swinney. Clemson’s six games with zero giveaways this season are a school record, surpassing the five turnover-free games in 1988, 1994, 2007 and 2018. – Clemson entering the game with 14 turnovers lost on the season, the seventh-fewest in a season in school history and two fewer than the 2017 squad (16) for the fewest under Head Coach Dabo Swinney. Clemson’s 1.00 giveaways-per-game average is the third-lowest in school history behind the 1940 (0.88) and 2007 (0.92) teams. – Clemson entering the game with three defensive touchdowns in 2019. A fourth defensive touchdown this season would represent Clemson’s second time in three years scoring four defensive touchdowns in a season (four in 2017). – Clemson attempting to exceed 6.0 yards per play for a 10th game in a row, which would be Clemson’s longest streak on record. – Clemson (634) needing 30 points to tie or 31 points to break the school record for points in a season, set by the 2018 squad (664). – Clemson (85) entering the game five touchdowns shy of the school record for touchdowns in a single season (90 in 2018). – Clemson (40) entering the game five passing touchdowns shy of the single-season team record (45 in 2016). – Clemson (7,537) chasing the 2016 team (No. 3; 7,552), 2015 team (No. 2; 7,718) and 2018 team (No. 1; 7,908) for the most yards in a season in school history. Clemson is 371 yards away from tying or 372 yards from breaking the school single-season total yardage mark. – Clemson (4,091) needing 409 passing yards to produce the second 4,500-yard passing season in school history (5,009 in 2016). Clemson’s 2019 total currently ranks sixth in school history but can move into second with 283 yards in the finale. – Clemson (3,446) needing 24 rushing yards to pass the 1978 team (3,469) for the second-most in a season. Clemson is 277 yards shy of matching the team record set last season (3,723). – Clemson (6.41) entering the game within striking distance of the school record for yards per carry (6.55 in 2018). – Clemson (370) sitting 23 first downs shy of tying for second place in school history in total first downs (393 in 2015). The 2019 squad is 33 first downs shy of the school record of 403 from 2016. – Running back Travis Etienne, who holds ACC career records for rushing touchdowns (55) and total touchdowns (61), entering the game as the Football Bowl Subdivision’s active career leader in each category. – Etienne (55) needing five more rushing touchdowns to become only the 12th player in FBS history to record 60 career rushing touchdowns, a mark reached only by Navy’s Keenan Reynolds (88), Wisconsin’s Montee Ball (77), Miami (Ohio)’s Travis Prentice (73), Texas’ Ricky Williams (72), Louisiana Tech’s Kenneth Dixon (72), Florida Atlantic’s Devin Singletary (66), Indiana’s Anthony Thompson (64), Texas’ Cedric Benson (64), Wisconsin’s Ron Dayne (63), San Diego State’s Donnel Pumphrey (62) and Oregon’s Royce Freeman (60). – Etienne (366) entering the game as the highestscoring non-kicker (and 10th-highest scorer among all players) in ACC history. – Etienne (366) needing 14 points to pass placekicker Greg Huegel (379 from 2015-18) for second on Clemson’s career scoring leaderboard including kickers. – Etienne (3,960) needing seven rushing yards to pass Raymond Priester (3,966) for Clemson’s all-time record for career rushing yards. – Etienne (3,960) needing 40 rushing yards to become the first 4,000-yard career rusher in Clemson history. He would join NC State’s Ted Brown, Florida State’s Dalvin Cook, North Carolina’s Amos Lawrence, Maryland’s LaMont Jordan, Louisville’s Lamar Jackson, Georgia Tech’s Robert Lavette, Wake Forest’s Chris Barclay and Boston College’s AJ Dillon to become only the ninth 4,000-yard rusher in ACC history. – Etienne attempting to reach 200 rushing yards in a game for the fourth time in his career to add to his school record for career 200-yard rushing games. He would become the first Clemson player with three 200-yard rushing games in a single season. – Etienne (17) needing another 100-yard rushing game to pass Wayne Gallman (17 from 2014-16) for the school record for career 100-yard rushing games. – Etienne (eight) attempting to post a ninth 100-yard rushing game this season to tie Gallman’s single-season school record (nine in 2015). – Etienne attempting to rush for a touchdown in a ninth straight game to tie the school record shared by Lester Brown (1978), Terry Allen (1988-89) and James Davis (2005-06). – Etienne (1,536) entering the game 122 rushing yards away from matching his school record of 1,658, set last season. – Etienne (18) needing only two more rushing touchdowns this season to become the first player in ACC history to record multiple seasons of 20 or more rushing touchdowns in a career. Etienne (24 in 2018) is presently one of only four players in league history with a 20-touchdown rushing season to his credit, including Pitt’s James Conner (26 in 2014), Virginia Tech’s Ryan Williams (21 in 2009) and Louisville’s Lamar Jackson (21 in 2016). – Etienne (22) sitting four touchdowns of any kind shy of his school-record 2018 campaign when he scored 26 total touchdowns. – Etienne (4,978) needing 22 all-purpose yards to join C.J. Spiller and Sammy Watkins as the only players in school history to produce 5,000 career all-purpose yards. Etienne is 151 yards shy of tying Watkins (5,129) for second in career all-purpose yardage. – Etienne (four) attempting to add to his singleseason career high in touchdown receptions. A fifth touchdown reception on the year would be the most by a Clemson running back since Travis Zachery caught five touchdowns in 2000. – Wide receiver Tee Higgins (27) needing one touchdown reception to take sole possession of the school career record, breaking a tie he presently holds with DeAndre Hopkins and Sammy Watkins (27 each). – Higgins (2,396) chasing No. 8 Artavis Scott (2,480), No. 7 Rod Gardner (2,498) and No. 6 Perry Tuttle (2,534) on Clemson’s career receiving yardage list. – Higgins (1,115) entering the game 104 receiving yards shy of tying Sammy Watkins (1,219 in 2011) for fourth in a season in school annals. Higgins needs only 85 receiving yards to post the fifth 1,200-yard receiving season in school history. – Higgins (13) needing five more receiving touchdowns to tie the single-season school record set by DeAndre Hopkins in 2012 (18). – Higgins (132) needing six more catches to move into the Top 15 in school history in career receptions. – Quarterback Trevor Lawrence attempting to improve his record as a starter to 26-0. With a win, he would become the first FBS quarterback in the modern era to win 15 games as a starter in a single season and break the Clemson record of 14 set by Deshaun Watson in both 2015 and 2016. – Lawrence attempting to throw a touchdown pass in a 25th consecutive game. His current 24-game streak is the longest active streak in the country. (Note: UCF’s McKenzie Milton had a 24-game streak prior to suffering an injury in November 2018 that precluded him from playing in 2019). – Lawrence entering the game with 66 career passing touchdowns, the most through a sophomore season in ACC history. With his second passing touchdown of the semifinal in the Fiesta Bowl, he broke the ACC record held by Jameis Winston across his first two seasons at Florida State (65). – Lawrence (36) needing one passing touchdown to pass Tajh Boyd (36 in 2012) for sole possession for second on the school leaderboard for touchdown passes in a single season. Deshaun Watson holds the singleseason Clemson record with 41 in 2016. – Lawrence entering the game responsible for 44 touchdowns this season (36 passing, eight rushing), tied for the sixth-most in a season in ACC history. Deshaun Watson holds the Clemson single-season record with 50 in 2016, the second-most in a season in ACC records. – Lawrence (3,431) needing 69 passing yards to post only the seventh 3,500-yard passing season in school history. – Lawrence (3,945) needing only 55 combined rushing and passing yards to post the sixth 4,000-yard season of total offense in school history. He would be only the third Clemson quarterback to do so, joining Deshaun Watson (twice, 2015-16) and Tajh Boyd (three times, 2011-13). – Lawrence (seven) attempting to join Tajh Boyd (18), Deshaun Watson (13) and Charlie Whitehurst (eight) as the only players in school history to record at least eight career 300-yard passing games. His next 300-yard game would tie him with Whitehurst for third in school history. – Lawrence entering the contest having thrown 202 consecutive pass attempts without an interception, already Clemson’s single-season and multi-season record. It is presently tied for the ninth-longest streak in ACC history. – Safety Tanner Muse (four) needing two more interceptions to tie for fifth in school history in interceptions in a season. – Kicker B.T. Potter attempting to convert a third field goal of 50 yards or more to tie Richard Jackson’s school record for 50-yard field goals in a single season from 2009. Potter recorded a field goal of 51 yards against both Georgia Tech and Louisville. – Potter (77) needing three PATs to join Roberto Aguayo (94 in 2013) as the only players in ACC history to record 80 PATs in a single season. – Potter (84-for-84 for his career) entering the game four extra points shy of tying or five extra points shy of breaking Clemson’s all-time record for consecutive extra points made (88 by Mark Buchholz from 2007- 08). – Linebacker Isaiah Simmons and safety Nolan Turner each attempting to record an interception in a third straight game. The last time a Clemson player recorded a pick in three straight contests was 2009, when both DeAndre McDaniel (first three games of the season) and Rashard Hall (four straight contests across games 5-8) accomplished the feat. Both McDaniel (Defensive Analyst) and Hall (Director of Career & Professional Development) are now on the Clemson staff. – Safeties K’Von Wallace and Tanner Muse (58 each) each appearing in their 59th career game to tie defensive tackle Christian Wilkins and tight end Cannon Smith (59 each from 2015-18) for most career games in school history.

SEEKING 15 WINS

With Clemson and LSU each reaching the 14-win mark this season, there have now been 15 seasons of 14 or more wins since the NCAA split Division I in 1978. Clemson accounts for four of those 14-win seasons, matching Alabama for the most 14-win seasons in that span. Clemson remains the only program in that time frame to win 15 games in a season, a feat it can match (and preclude LSU from reaching) with one more victory.

The 2019 Tigers are just the fifth ACC team in history to record at least 14 wins in a season. Clemson accounts for four of those five 14-win seasons. Clemson has posted the ACC’s four most-recent 14-win seasons, recording a 14-1 record during both the 2015 and 2016 campaigns and a 15-0 record in 2018. Clemson’s 1981 National Championship team was the first ACC team to win 12 games in a season. Florida State accomplished the feat five times between 1993 and 2014, including a streak of three seasons with at least 12 wins from 2012-14. They won a then-record 14 games (14-0) in 2013, a mark tied by Clemson in 2015 and 2016 before being broken in 2018.

 

GAME NOTES AND PREVIEW WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF CLEMSON ATHLETICS COMMUNICATIONS

COLLEGE FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS INFORMATION COURTESY OF WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

 

Redhawks PK Sam Sloman named 2nd Team All-America by The Athletic

Sam Sloman, a member of the Miami University football team, was named second team All-America by The Athletic in December.

Sloman, a second team All-MAC performer, had arguably the greatest season ever for a Miami kicker. Sloman connected on 25-of-29 field goals and was a perfect 32-for-32 on extra points this season. The 25 made field goals are five more than anyone in school history and currently ranks second in the nation. His 107 points in 2019 rank fifth in school history.

Sam Sloman

The senior is coming off the best game of his career, in the biggest game of his career. Sloman was a perfect 4-for-4 on field goals in a 26-21 victory over Central Michigan in the MAC Championship Game last Saturday in Detroit. The Roswell, Ga., native split the uprights from 41, 33, 48 and 42 yards, with his last two kicks coming with under six minutes to play in the contest.

Sloman has shown an enormous leg all season long, draining 4-of-5 kicks from at least 50-yards out. His brightest moment was a 53-yard game-winning field goal over Ohio to help send the RedHawks to the MAC Championship game. He also has 50 touchbacks this season.

Sloman and the RedHawks compete in the LendingTree Bowl versus Louisiana-Lafayette on January 6.

 

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF MIAMI ATHLETICS COMMUNICATIONS

Miami Redhawks football puts 12 players on Academic All-Mac Team

Mike BrownKameron ButlerBennett ClarkEvan CrabtreeZach KahnTommy DoyleRyan McWoodRyan NewtonPete NankAdam MehelicJalen Walker and Sterling Weatherford were named Academic All-MAC in December.

The Academic All-MAC honor is for a student who has excelled in athletics and academics.  To qualify, a student must have at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA and have
participated in at least 50 percent of the contests for that particular sport. First-year students and junior college transfers in their first year of
residence are not eligible for the award.

Mike Brown, Junior, 3.52 GPA, Sport Leadership and Management (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
Kameron Butler, Sophomore, 3.55 GPA, Sport Leadership and Management (Florence, Ky.)
Bennett Clark, Redshirt Freshman, 3.72 GPA, Marketing (Zionsville, Ind.)
Evan Crabtree, Senior, 3.80 GPA, Kinesiology (Dublin, Ohio)
Zach Kahn, Junior, 3.58 GPA, Marketing (Strongsville, Ohio)
Tommy Doyle, Junior, 3.25 GPA, Marketing (Edina, Minn.)
Ryan McWood, Junior, 3.32 GPA, Kinesiology (Grosse Pointe, Mich.)
Ryan Newton, Sophomore, 3.26 GPA, Social Studies (St. Louis, Mo.)
Pete Nank, Sophomore, 3.22 GPA, Sports Leadership and Management (West Des Moines, Iowa)
Adam Mehelic, Sophomore, 3.20 GPA, Political Science (Hudson, Ohio)
Jalen Walker, Sophomore, 3.31 GPA, Sports Leadership and Management (Carmel, Ind.)
Sterling Weatherford, Sophomore, 3.54 GPA, Mechanical Engineering (Cicero, Ind.)

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF MID-AMERICAN CONFERENCE COMMUNICATIONS, MIAMI ATHLETICS COMMUNICATIONS

Miami Redhawks and football coach Chuck Martin announce 2020 Recruiting Class

Miami University head football coach Chuck Martin has announced the addition of 23 student-athletes to the Miami football program on Dec. 18, 2019

FULL NAME POS. HT. WT. HOMETOWN HIGH SCHOOL HIGHLIGHTS
David Afari RB 5-11 200 West Chester, Ohio Lakota West HIGHLIGHTS
Jeremiah Batiste WR 5-11 180 New Orleans, La. Tyner Academy HIGHLIGHTS
James Bomba TE 6-6 230 Bloomington, Ind. Bloomington South HIGHLIGHTS
Ambe’ Caldwell DB 6-1 193 Atlanta, Ga. Woodward Academy HIGHLIGHTS
Dominic Collado OL 6-3 290 Crystal Lake, Ill. Crystal Lake South HIGHLIGHTS
Kevin Davis RB 5-9 160 Jackson, Tenn. Trinity Christian Academy HIGHLIGHTS
Devon Dorsey WR 6-2 195 Jonesboro, Ga. Eagles Landing Christian Academy HIGHLIGHTS
Dom Dzioban K/P 6-1 180 Frankfork, Ill. Lincoln Way East HIGHLIGHTS
Reid Holskey OL 6-6 290 Pataskala, Ohio Licking Heights HIGHLIGHTS
Dimitri Mitsopoulos WR 5-10 180 Sylvania, Ohio Toledo St. John’s HIGHLIGHTS
Jason Morton OL 6-8 300 Greendale, Ind. Lawrenceburg HIGHLIGHTS
Nate Muersch TE 6-5 215 Downers Grove, Ill. Montini Catholic HIGHLIGHTS
Charlie Nank OL 6-4 290 West Dem Moines, Iowa Dowling Catholic HIGHLIGHTS
Quadre Nicholson RB 5-10 175 Evanston, Ill Evanston HIGHLIGHTS
Camden Rogers LB 6-0 205 Fort Wayne, Ind. Homestead HIGHLIGHTS
TJ Rush DB 5-11 170 St. Louis, Mo. Trinity Catholic HIGHLIGHTS
John Saunders Jr. DB 6-2 200 High Point N. C. High Point Christian HIGHLIGHTS
Caleb Siech OL 6-6 305 Janesville, Iowa Waverly Shell-Rock HIGHLIGHTS
Aveon Smith QB 6-1 190 Lexington, S.C. White Knoll HIGHLIGHTS
Jacob Snell DL 6-4 246 Naperville, Ill. Benet Academy HIGHLIGHTS
Harrison Truitt WR 6-5 195 West Lafayette, Ind. West Lafayette HIGHLIGHTS
CJ Ware IV DL 6-5 230 Nolensville, Tenn. Nolensville HIGHLIGHTS
Jacquez Warren DB 6-0 170 Durham, N.C. Southern Durham HIGHLIGHTS

David Afari, RB, 5-11, 200, West Chester, Ohio (Lakota West)
High School: Currently attends Lakota West High School … coached by Tom Bolden … team captain … had 1,203 all-purpose yards and 20 touchdowns as a senior … earned first team all-southwest … ranks second all-time at Lakota West in rushing yards.

Jeremiah Batiste, WR, 5-11, 180, New Orleans, La. (Tyner Academy)
High School: Currently attends Tyner Academy … coached by Wayne Turner … team captain … earned all-state honors as a senior, recording 45 catches for 810 yards and 10 touchdowns … earned all-state as a junior and was a finalist for Mr. Football in his state after recording 48 receptions for 1,133 yards and 18 touchdowns.

James Bomba, TE, 6-6, 230, Bloomington, Ind. (Bloomington South)
High School: Currently attends Bloomington South High School … coached by Mo Moriarity … team captain … earned all-state honors as a junior and senior … named team MVP in 2019 … is a two-time all-conference player … also lettered in basketball.

Ambe’ Caldwell, DB, 6-1, 193, Atlanta, Ga. (Woodward Academy)
High School: Currently attends Woodward Academy High School … coached by John Hunt and Ryan Davis … earned first team all-region as a senior, recording 72 tackles, two interceptions and four pass breakups … had 43 catches for 817 yards and 13 touchdowns as a senior on the offensive side of the ball.

Dominic Collado, OL, 6-3, 290, Crystal Lake, Ill. (Crystal Lake South)
High School: Currently attends Crystal Lake South High School … coached by Rob Fontana … team captain … earned all-state honors as a senior … recorded 59 pancakes from his offensive line position … four-year starter … also lettered in wrestling.

Kevin Davis, RB, 5-9, 160, Jackson, Tenn. (Trinity Christian Academy)
High School: Currently attends Trinity Christian Academy … coached by Blake Butler … team captain … recorded 1,932 rushing yards and 22 touchdowns as a senior … added 207 receiving and 370 return yards … earned all-state honors as a senior and was the region’s Offensive Player of the Year … added 820 yards rushing, 661 receiving yards and 19 touchdowns as a junior.

Devon Dorsey, WR, 6-2, 195, Jonesboro, Ga. (Eagles Landing Christian Academy)
High School: Currently attends Eagles Landing Christian Academy … coached by Jonathan Gess … team captain … team went 54-2 in his four years, winning four state championships … was named to the all-region team in 2019.

Dom Dzioban, K/P, 6-1, 180, Frankfort, Ill. (Lincoln Way East)
High School: Currently attends Lincoln Way East High School … coached by Rob Zvonar … was 18-of-20 on field goals and 50-of-51 on extra points his senior year … team went 14-0 and won a state championship that same season … he also earned all-state honors as a senior … owns school record for most field goals made (37) and is the school’s all-time leading scorer (340 points).

Reid Holskey, OL, 6-6, 290, Pataskala, Ohio (Licking Heights)
High School: Currently attends Licking Heights High School … coached by Darren Waters … team captain … earned first team all-conference as a senior … team MVP as a senior … earned second team all-conference as a junior.

Dimitri Mitsopoulos, WR, 5-10, 180, Sylvania, Ohio (Toledo St. John’s)
High School: Currently attends St. John’s Jesuit High School … coached by Larry MacDaniel … team captain … earned first team all-state as a junior and senior … owns the school record for career receiving yards (2,577) and touchdowns (32) … added 14 career interceptions on the defensive side of the ball.

Jason Morton, OL, 6-8, 300, Greendale, Ind. (Lawrenceburg)
High School: Currently attends Lawrenceburg High School … coached by Ryan Knigga … earned all-state as a senior as well as all-conference.

Nate Muersch, TE, 6-5, 215, Downers Grove, Ill. (Montini Catholic)
High School: Currently attends Montini Catholic High School … coached by Mike Bukovsky … team captain … earned all-state as a senior, recording 40 catches for 777 yards and 11 touchdowns … added 36 receptions for 506 yards and 10 scores as a junior.

Charlie Nank, OL, 6-4, 290, West Des Moines, Iowa (Dowling Catholic)
High School: Currently attends West des Moines Dowling High School … coached by Tom Wilson … team captain … helped lead his team to a state championship his senior year … same season he earned first team all-state … team won a state championship his junior year as well as he earned second team all-state honors.

Quadre Nicholson, RB, 5-10, 175, Evanston, Ill. (Evanston)
High School: Currently attends Evanston High School … coached by Mike Burzawa … team captain … four-year starter … rushed for 508 yards and five touchdowns as a senior … had 1,208 yards and 17 touchdowns his junior season … also lettered in track.

Camden Rogers, LB, 6-0, 205, Fort Wayne, Ind. (Homestead)
High School: Currently attends Homestead High School … coached by Chad Zolman … team captain … earned first team all-state as a senior, recording 96 tackles, 8.0 sacks, 18.0 tackles for loss and three pass breakups … named to the Indiana Top-22 team  … was named Northeast Indiana Defensive Player of the Year … earned all-state as a junior as well, recording 100 tackles, 10.0 sacks and 14.0 tackles for loss.

TJ Rush, DB, 5-11, 170, St. Louis, Mo. (Trinity Catholic)
High School: Currently attends Trinity Catholic High School … coached by John Randle … team captain … earned a spot on the all-defensive team in the state of Missouri … earned first team all-state as a senior … team won a state championship as a junior … named to the Post Dispatch Preseason Super-30 Team.

John Saunders Jr., DB, 6-2, 200, High Point, N.C. (High Point Christian)
High School: Currently attends High Point Christian High School … coached by Scott Bell … team captain … earned first team all-state as a senior, recording 900 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns … added six interceptions and 16 pass breakups as a senior … named his team’s Most Valuable Player … had 30 total touchdowns (19 passing and 12 rushing/receiving) as a junior.

Caleb Siech, OL, 6-6, 305, Janesville, Iowa (Waverly Shell-Rock)
High School: Currently attends Waverly Shell-Rock High School … coached by Mark Hubbard … three-year letterwinner … earned first team all-district as a senior … earned third team all-state as a junior … also lettered in track and basketball.

Aveon Smith, QB, 6-1, 190, Lexington, S.C., (White Knoll)
High School: Currently attends White Knoll High School … coached by Dean Howell … team captain … in just five games he threw for 1,029 passing yards and 18 touchdowns, while adding 608 yards rushing and nine scores before suffering a season ending injury … earned all-state as a senior … threw for 1,343 yards and 14 touchdowns as a junior, while adding 1,000 yards and 14 scores on the ground.

Jacob Snell, DL, 6-4, 246, Naperville, Ill. (Benet Academy)
High School: Currently attends Benet Academy … coached by Pat New … team captain … earned all conference as a senior … recorded 47 tackles, 16.0 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks and eight hurries his senior year … was named the Defensive MVP for his division and earned all-area and all-conference honors.

Harrison Truitt, WR, 6-5, 195, West Lafayette, Ind. (West Lafayette)
High School: Currently attends West Lafayette High School … coached by Shane Fry … earned all-state as a senior, recording 72 catches for 1,292 yards and 19 touchdowns  … was named to the Indiana Preps Top-22 … had 47 catches for 840 yards and nine touchdowns as a junior … school record holder in receiving yards and touchdowns.

CJ Ware IV, DL, 6-5, 230, Nolensville, Tenn. (Nolensville)
High School: Currently attends Nolensville High School … coached by Paul Derrick … team captain … earned all-region as a junior and senior … recorded 75 tackles, 6.0 sacks, 8.0 tackles for loss and one fumble recovery as a senior.

Jacquez Warren, DB, 6-0, 170, Durham, N.C., (Southern Durham)
High School: Currently attends Southern Durham High School … coached by Darius Robinson … team captain … earned three letters … recorded 202 tackles in his career.

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF MIAMI ATHLETICS COMMUNICATIONS

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