Morning Roundup: December 29, 2019

Tag: Clemson

29Dec 2019
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Morning Roundup: December 29, 2019


Yes, this was targeting:

People are throwing out some solutions for the targeting rule, so I might as well throw my hat into the ring as a rule maker.

A lot of people – I would venture to say most – don’t understand “targeting.” The problem, in my opinion, is the word “targeting.” It seems to imply that there has to be something intentional about it. If you go out for target practice, you’re intentionally trying to shoot at a precise spot (a hay bale, a bullseye, etc.). If a missile hits its target, yes, it was intentional.

“Targeting” in football doesn’t have anything to do with intent. You either do it or you don’t. You can’t:

  1. Lower your head to make contact with the crown of the helmet.
  2. Create forcible contact to the head/neck area.

So change the terminology. Call #1 “spearing” and call #2 “targeting” or “head-hunting” or “flibbergibbing” or whatever you want. But I’ve discovered that a lack of education on a topic causes a lot of outrage. The “powers that be” of NCAA football need to show up on a national, widely watched broadcast and explain “targeting” or “spearing” or whatever the call ends up being. They need to show examples. And those examples can be provided on Youtube, Twitter, websites, etc. anytime there’s a question about “targeting.”

I’m glad LSU and Clemson are the two representatives in the national championship game. I’ll be rooting for LSU.

8Jan 2019
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Clemson 44, Alabama 16: A Few Very Quick Thoughts

  • I thought Alabama would win this one, 42-34. A blowout victory by Clemson was not what I saw coming at all.
  • Clemson out-coached Alabama. Nick Saban made some dumb decisions. It seemed like Alabama was more in desperation mode. Maybe they knew behind closed doors that they were the underdog in this one.
  • Also, Clemson’s dudes just happened to show up in this game, and Alabama’s didn’t. There’s a universe where Alabama wins this game handily, but when Justyn Ross and Tee Higgins are making ridiculous plays on the outside, when Tua’s having an off game, etc., it’s just really tough to stop that avalanche once it gets going.
  • The biggest surprise to me was Alabama’s inability to punch the ball in after long drives. Alabama was gashing Clemson with the run. The top three running backs had 31 carries for 163 yards . . . and zero touchdowns. I think Alabama got too cute with the RPO stuff when the outside and inside zone were working.
  • Tee Higgins was my #1 wide receiver in the 2017 class, ahead of Donovan Peoples-Jones. Both are very good players, but Higgins is a touch ahead, and he’s in a system that is going to take advantage (3 catches for 81 yards tonight). Maybe Jerry Jeudy should have been up there somewhere, too, I guess.
  • If I’m an elite wide receiver, I’m going to Clemson. In my opinion, there’s no other school in the country that develops receivers better than Clemson. Yes, they recruit elite talent (Higgins, Justyn Ross, etc.), but they actually get a chance to showcase their talents. And even when they’re not putting up eye-popping numbers, they’re making big plays and playing in big games.
  • Trevor Lawrence is another guy I really liked coming out of high school. I said during the 2018 recruiting cycle that he reminded me of Peyton Manning with his ability to understand the game and anticipate defensive coverages. Lawrence is a better athlete and they have different personalities, so they’re not spitting images, but you can see how well Lawrence reacts to what defenses are giving him.
  • It was interesting to me to watch those two offenses play. I’ve been studying spread offenses more and more since my high school season ended, and as I continue to get a better grasp on what teams like Alabama and Clemson are doing in their run game, pass game, RPO stuff, etc., it’s fun to make calls in my living room and see whether those respective offensive coordinators/quarterbacks see what I’m seeing. I was doing pretty well early in the game when both teams were in shootout mode, but once Tua lost his mojo and Clemson took their foot off the gas, my guess accuracy started to fizzle, too.
  • Damien Harris and Najee Harris get all the hype for being 5-star recruits, but the guy in Alabama’s backfield who impresses me most is Josh Jacobs. He can run, catch, block, play wildcat QB, etc. Perhaps a bit like Kenyan Drake, Jacobs might be the unheralded guy at Alabama who doesn’t really show what he can do until he gets to the NFL.
  • We’ve known this for a while, but Michigan would have been smashed by both of these teams if the Wolverines would have sneaked into the playoff at #4 with a win over Ohio State and then Northwestern in the Big Ten Championship. The line of scrimmage would have been dominated by Alabama/Clemson, and they would have made mincemeat of Michigan’s safeties. I’d rather lose in a playoff blowout than in a Peach Bowl blowout to Florida, but Michigan would have ended the season with an embarrassing loss either way.
7Jan 2019
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Mini-CFP Championship Preview: Alabama vs. Clemson


I know you’re going to buy something from Amazon today, so please use the links here at TTB to make your purchases (LINK).


  • Players recruited by Michigan: LB Christopher Allen, LB Eyabi Anoma, LB Markail Benton, OL Tommy Brown, DB Shyheim Carter, LB Ben Davis, DB Trevon Diggs, OL Emil Ekiyor, TE Miller Forristall, RB Damien Harris, RB Najee Harris, TE Hale Hentges, TE Kedrick James, WR Jerry Jeudy, DB Josh Jobe, WR Derek Kief, DB Nigel Knott, OL Alex Leatherwood, LB Terrell Lewis, DB Jared Mayden, LB Josh McMillon, LB Dylan Moses, OL Chris Owens, LB Jarez Parks, OL Kendall Randolph, DL LaBryan Ray, WR Henry Ruggs III, WR Tyrell Shavers, TE Irv Smith, Jr., DB Patrick Surtain II, TE Major Tennison, WR Jaylen Waddle, OL Jonah Williams, WR Xavier Williams, OL Jedrick Wills, Jr., LB Mack Wilson,
  • OL Emil Ekiyor and RB Damien Harris were previously committed to Michigan
  • Cornerback Trevon Diggs is the younger brother of former Maryland and current Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs
  • Tight end Irv Smith, Jr. is the son of former Notre Dame and NFL tight end Irv Smith
  • Cornerback Patrick Surtain II is the son of former Southern Miss and NFL cornerback Patrick Surtain
  • Alabama QB coach Dan Enos was employed by Michigan for a short time in the 2017-2018 off-season


  • Players recruited by Michigan: OG Matt Bockhorst, QB Chase Brice, OL Jackson Carman, WR T.J. Chase, RB Lyn-J Dixon, DE Clelin Ferrell, CB Mark Fields, DE Justin Foster, C Zach Giella, CB Mario Goodrich, DE K.J. Henry, WR Tee Higgins, OT Mitch Hyatt, DL Xavier Kelly, QB Trevor Lawrence, DE Justin Mascoll, CB Kyler McMichael, CB Trayvon Mullen, S Tanner Muse, WR Diondre Overton, WR Amari Rodgers, WR Justyn Ross, DE Logan Rudolph, DE Xavier Thomas, LB Regan Upshaw, CB LeAnthony Williams
  • Safety Brian Dawkins, Jr. is the son of former Clemson and NFL safety Brian Dawkins
  • Cornerback Mark Fields II is the son of former Washington State and NFL linebacker Mark Fields
  • Linebacker Regan Upshaw is the son of former Cal and NFL defensive end Regan Upshaw


  • Michigan has never played Clemson.
  • Michigan is 2-2 against Alabama. The last time they played was in the season-opener of 2012, which Alabama won, 41-14. The series between Michigan and head coach Nick Saban is also 2-2, as he went 1-2 at Michigan State vs. the Wolverines.


  • Alabama 42, Clemson 34
9Jan 2017
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National Championship Mini-Preview: Alabama vs. Clemson

Artavis Scott


The game will start shortly after 8:00 p.m. The broadcast will be on ESPN with Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Samantha Ponder, and Tom Rinaldi in their various booth and sideline roles.


  • Players offered by Michigan: DT Jonathan Allen, CB Shyheim Carter, LB Ben Davis, CB Minkah Fitzpatrick, TE Miller Forristall, WR Robert Foster, LB Terrell Hall, DE Da’shawn Hand, RB Damien Harris, TE Hale Hentges, CB Nigel Knott, CB Jared Mayden, LB Joshua McMillon, RB Bo Scarbrough, TE Irv Smith, DT Dalvin Tomlinson, OT Jonah Williams, LB Mack Wilson
  • RB Damien Harris is a one-time Michigan commit


  • Players offered by Clemson: DE Austin Bryant, WR T.J. Chase, DE Clelin Ferrell, OT Jake Fruhmorgen, OG Zach Giella, OT Mitch Hyatt, CB Trayvon Mullen, S Tanner Muse, LB Dorian O’Daniel, WR Diondre Overton, DT Scott Pagano, WR Artavis Scott,
  • WR Artavis Scott was a high school teammate of Michigan center Mason Cole


  • Alabama could become the first team to go 15-0.
  • Alabama beat Clemson 45-40 in last year’s national championship game.
  • Alabama offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian was hired for that role next year, but he steps in early after offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin left for the head coaching job at FAU. Sarkisian was just an offensive analyst on staff prior to this promotion.


  • I saw Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney at a clinic a couple years ago. After that and reading about him, I really like the guy. He seems like a very down-to-Earth type of person, and he’s genuine in his passion for the game of football. I also saw Nick Saban at a clinic several years ago, and I was not as impressed. I know Saban has had a lot more success, but Swinney’s a tough guy not to like, in my opinion.


  • Clemson lost a lot of talent last year. I know every elite team does, but their personnel losses were significant on the defensive line and in the defensive backfield. They’ve got a puncher’s chance, and I love their wide receivers.
  • Alabama is very good at every level. Clemson has an obvious advantage at QB with Deshaun Watson over Jalen Hurts, and they also have an advantage at WR. But that’s about it.
  • Alabama 38, Clemson 34

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11Jan 2016
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National Championship: Alabama vs. Clemson players to watch

The national championship game will be played tonight. It starts at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN. Here are some roster notes. If you’re like me at all, you might want to keep an eye on a few guys who were recruited by Michigan.


  • DE Jonathan Allen, QB Blake Barnett, CB Minkah Fitzpatrick, LB Reuben Foster, WR Robert Foster, DE Da’Shawn Hand, RB Damien Harris, TE Hale HentgesCB Cyrus Jones, C Ryan Kelly, LB Dillon Lee, S Geno Matias-Smith, LB Joshua McMillon, OT Cam Robinson, RB Bo Scarbrough, CB Kendall Sheffield, CB Maurice Smith, LB Adonis Thomas, DE Dalvin Tomlinson
  • RB Damien Harris is a former Michigan commit
  • Player from the state of Michigan: walk-on OL Chris Posa from Orchard Lake (MI) St. Mary’s


  • DE Clelin Ferrell, OT Jake Fruhmorgen, C Zach Giella, OT Mitch Hyatt, WR Ray-Ray McCloud III, S Tanner Muse, LB Dorian O’Daniel, DT Scott Pagano, WR Charone Peake, WR Artavis Scott
  • Zero Clemson Tigers are from the state of Michigan
  • Clemson has just six (6!) players on their roster from north of North Carolina. There are 2 from Maryland, 2 from Virginia, 1 from New York, and 1 from Massachusetts.


  • Alabama 30, Clemson 21

Starters are in bold