Archives for posts with tag: Clemson

Just as the Third Saturday in October post did a few weeks ago, let’s take a look at games from five, ten, 20 and 30 years ago in the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry. All were Georgia victories.

Auburn leads the series 54-53-8, but Georgia enters as a 15-point favorite tomorrow night on the Plains seeking to tie the overall record. The Tigers have led the series since 1988.

2007: #10 Georgia 45, #17 Auburn 20 (Athens)

Knowshon Moreno runs away from Auburn defenders in 2007.

Known as the Blackout Game on the Georgia side, the Bulldogs wore black jerseys for the first time in the modern era and jumped out to a 17-3 lead in the 2nd quarter. But Auburn responded and took a 20-17 lead in the 3rd quarter. A 24-yard touchdown run by RB Knowshon Moreno put the Bulldogs back on top for good as they ran off 28 consecutive points to end the game.

Georgia finished #2 after the bowl games behind fellow conference member and national champion LSU. They wore black jerseys again in the Sugar Bowl defeating Hawaii. Meanwhile, Auburn defeated Clemson in the Chick-fil-A Bowl, finishing 9-4 and #15.

Georgia’s “black magic” came to a screeching halt in 2008 against Alabama and in 2009 against Florida as they wore black helmets for the first time.

2002: #7 Georgia 24, #24 Auburn 21 (Auburn)

Georgia clinched its first SEC Eastern Division championship with its comeback win on the Plains. QB David Greene hit WR Michael Johnson in the back of the end zone on 4th-and-15 for the game winner. The Bulldogs defeated Arkansas 30-3 in the SEC Championship Game to secure Georgia’s first SEC Championship in 20 years. The Bulldogs beat Florida State in the Sugar Bowl, finishing 13-1 and #3 in the polls.

Auburn defeated Penn State in the Capital One Bowl, finishing 9-4 and #14.

Legendary Georgia Bulldog announcer Larry Munson on the call:

 

1992: #12 Georgia 14, Auburn 10 (Auburn)

Ray Goff’s best Georgia team (10-2) beat Pat Dye’s last Auburn team (5-6) as Georgia defenders laid on the pile as time expired on Auburn’s offense at the 1-yard line. Nine years later in 2001, Auburn defeated Georgia 24-17 in Athens in very similar fashion as Auburn defenders did the same thing at the 1-yard line.

After Georgia’s win in 1992, the Bulldogs defeated Ohio State (with QB Kirk Herbstreit and RB Robert Smith — yes, today’s ESPN analysts) in the Citrus (Capital One) Bowl and finished #8. Auburn lost to #1 Alabama and didn’t go bowling.

Two videos here — the first includes an image of Goff directing his players to lay down and the second includes Georgia announcer Larry Munson’s “Old Lady Luck” call of the play:

 

 

1982: #1 Georgia 19, Auburn 14 (Auburn)

In the days before an SEC Championship Game, many Auburn-Georgia games decided the fate of one’s chances to claim the conference crown. Such was the case in 1982 as Georgia was seeking its third consecutive SEC championship and was the #1 team in the country. Auburn was 7-2 in Pat Dye’s second year and trending up.

Auburn QB Randy Campbell and RB Lionel “Little Train” James led a late Auburn drive that ended as Georgia broke up a 4th down pass in the end zone.

#2 Penn State (with QB Todd Blackledge — another ESPN analyst) defeated #1 Georgia in the Sugar Bowl 27-23 for the 1982 national championship. Meanwhile, Auburn beat Alabama for the first time in ten years as freshman RB Bo Jackson scored late, and the Tigers beat Boston College in the Tangerine Bowl to finish 9-3 and #14.

Another Larry Munson call and he looks back on the 1982 Auburn-Georgia game:

 

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Two weeks ago head coach Steve Spurrier and South Carolina rang up their third consecutive win over Georgia for the first time in their history. Today, they attempt the same feat against Florida. Next week, it’s Tennessee that will try to avoid a third consecutive loss to the Gamecocks. And Clemson is already there, dropping games in 2009, 2010 and 2011 to South Carolina.

The ol’ ball coach has turned things around on each of South Carolina’s rivals, especially since players like former WR Alshon Jeffrey, current RB Marcus Lattimore and DE Jadeveon Clowney have decided to stay home and play for the Gamecocks.

Lattimore had 212 yards rushing and three touchdowns as a freshman in 2010 against Florida in Gainesville as South Carolina clinched its first SEC East title, defeating the Gators 36-14. A Gatorade shower followed for Spurrier and he was carried off the field that he coined as “The Swamp” as Florida’s head coach on his players’ shoulders.

There goes Marcus. (Courtesy: Mike Ehrmann, Getty Images)

Florida senior safety Josh Evans was quoted this week as saying, “That’s a feeling you’ll never forget. It’s definitely revenge, man.”

Today’s game marks the first time in 33 meetings that both teams are in the top 10, a similar storyline to the South Carolina-Georgia game two weeks ago.

A Gamecock win today would be South Carolina’s biggest road win in its history. In 1981, they beat #3 North Carolina and the dominant Lawrence Taylor in Chapel Hill 31-13. If they beat #2 Florida today, it will be another “first” or “best” for the Gamecocks.

They’re getting used to that in Columbia.

Jack Crowe and John L. Smith meet before this year’s Jacksonville State/Arkansas game (Credit: Mark Wagner)

Jack Crowe has been the head coach at Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Ala., since 2000, compiling a record of 81-52 with three Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) championships and three trips to the NCAA Football Championship Series (FCS) playoffs. The 65-year-old Crowe was born in Birmingham, Ala., and has deep roots in the SEC. He was the head coach at Arkansas (1990-1992) when the Razorbacks entered the conference with South Carolina in 1992.

Crowe at Arkansas’ first SEC Media Days in 1992

However, Crowe coached only one game for Arkansas as an SEC member, resigning after the Razorbacks dropped their 1992 opener to The Citadel, a I-AA football program. He recorded an overall mark of 9-15 at Arkansas, finishing 8th in the old Southwest Conference (SWC) in 1990 and T-2nd in 1991, losing to Georgia in the Independence Bowl. Arkansas athletic director and former head football coach Frank Broyles was known for feuding with his coaches, and a Crowe and Broyles feud led to Crowe’s resignation.

Joe Kines, Arkansas’ defensive coordinator and another coach with deep ties to the SEC (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia), served out 1992 as Arkansas’ interim head coach, finishing the season at 3-7-1 and 3-4-1 in conference. Kines’ Razorbacks defeated fellow newcomer South Carolina 45-7 in his first game as interim head coach and finished the season by defeating LSU 30-6 in their first meeting since the 1966 Cotton Bowl. Kines stayed on as new head coach Danny Ford’s assistant head coach and defensive coordinator in 1993 and 1994.

Crowe had SEC ties long before Arkansas’ entrance in 1992, serving as Auburn’s offensive coordinator from 1982-1985 under head coach Pat Dye. He then, ironically, served under Danny Ford as Clemson’s offensive coordinator from 1986-1988 before leaving for Arkansas in 1989 to serve as offensive coordinator under Arkansas head coach Ken Hatfield.

And in “As the Coaching World Turns,” Hatfield, who won SWC championships in 1988 and 1989, left his alma mater Arkansas also after alleged feuds with Broyles. Hatfield accepted the head coaching position at Clemson without visiting Clemson’s campus, replacing Ford in 1990.

Got all of that? Hatfield replaced Ford, who eventually took over Hatfield’s former position.

Meanwhile, Crowe took the Jacksonville State head coaching job, an FCS (I-AA) position, in 2000 after a stint as Baylor’s offensive coordinator and that’s where he remains today. Two years ago, Crowe experienced the other side of his 1992 defeat to The Citadel as Jacksonville State opened the 2010 season with a 49-48 overtime victory over Ole Miss in Oxford, Miss.┬áThe coaching world truly comes full circle.

Arkansas, with another interim head coach in John L. Smith, defeated Crowe’s Jacksonville State 49-24 to open the 2012 season before losing to Louisiana-Monroe last week.

Tennessee orange and N.C. State red (Credit: Kevin C. Cox, Getty Images)

Tennessee orange, N.C. State red, Auburn blue and Clemson orange were on full display this weekend at the Georgia Dome during the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic. Due to the proliferation of high-definition televisions in households across the country, Gary Stokan, Chick-fil-A Bowl president and CEO, and his crew decided to revive the long-standing college football tradition of both teams wearing their home colors before the advent of black-and-white televisions. It’s possible as long as the uniforms are of easily contrasted colors, and the Chick-fil-A Bowl first implemented it for last year’s bowl game between Auburn (blue) and Virginia (orange).

Auburn blue and Clemson orange (Credit: Dave Martin, AP)

Visiting teams were relegated to wearing white as a contrast so that viewers during the black-and-white television era could easily identify the teams from each other. The NCAA’s Article 3a read “players of opposing teams shall wear jerseys of contrasting colors, and the visiting team shall wear white jerseys.”

However, UCLA and USC had worn their colored jerseys against each other from 1929 to 1981 as they shared the Los Angeles Coliseum as a home field during that time. In 2006, the head coaches of both schools at the time, Karl Dorrell (UCLA) and Pete Carroll (USC), expressed interest in rejuvenating the tradition. The measure was put back in place for the 2008 game with the visiting coach, Pete Carroll, sacrificing one timeout under NCAA rules of improper equipment. Rick Neuheisel, then UCLA’s head coach, agreed to forfeit one of UCLA’s timeouts to even the playing field. The NCAA promptly changed the rule after the 2008 season to accommodate the renewed tradition of the UCLA-USC rivalry.

UCLA and USC have renewed their tradition from 1929-1981 of both teams wearing their colors

Under today’s rules, both teams must agree to wear colored jerseys — essentially leaving the decision to the home team — and they must be of easily contrasted colors.

Would Nick Saban ever do this? Um… (Credit: Paul Abell, US Presswire)

N.C. State’s, on Friday night, and Michigan’s, last night, 4th quarters were greeted with the “S-E-C! S-E-C! S-E-C!” chant that’s all too familiar to the rest of the country as Tennessee and Alabama dominated their out-of-conference foes, respectively — Alabama’s was more of an evisceration actually. With its 26-19 win over Auburn, Clemson seemed to not just win one for the ACC but for the Northeast, Midwest and West Coast as well.

Tennessee’s WR Cordarrelle Patterson served notice to the conference that the Vols’ WR corp doesn’t need Da’Rick Rogers — they’re just fine, thank you. And Patterson wasn’t the only one to burn N.C. State All-American CB David Amerson, last year’s NCAA interception leader, as it seemed all orange-clad receivers had at least one moment against him.

While Tennessee’s passing attack looks up to speed, the Vols are still searching for a complimentary runner behind QB Tyler Bray, and new defensive coordinator Sal Sunseri’s unit was very hit-and-miss on Friday night as well. Transitioning to a 3-4 defense can prove for some tough growing pains in the first year. Tennessee’s JUCO transfer nose tackle, the 6-foot 6-inch, 362-pound Daniel McCullers, has been a hit with Vols fans this off-season, but it remains to be seen if he can hold the point for the first year 3-4 defense.

‘Bama beat ’em blue, black and every other color. (Credit: LM Otero, AP)

After Michigan forced a 3-and-out on Alabama’s first possession of the game, the Wolverines were so jacked up they almost floated through the hole in Jerry’s World’s roof. Too bad that’s where their game went after that series, but that had more to do with Alabama than Michigan. Nick Saban has a program — or a “system” or a “standard” — that’s a little hard to believe in the limited 85-man scholarship era. The old saying of “I’ll beat you with my team today, and I’ll beat you with your team tomorrow,” that’s credited to Bear Bryant can almost be applied to Saban today. Good luck beating the Crimson Tide when Nick has more than a week to prepare.

Why didn’t Auburn play QB Kiehl Frazier more last year? This was a question we pondered in 2011 and in Auburn’s 26-19 loss to Clemson last night, he showed why he should have been given more consideration. He was only 11-for-27 but his athleticism should have had him working more in 2011 and, in turn, working out his accuracy issues. But credit the other quarterback in the Georgia Dome Saturday night with Clemson’s comeback win. QB Tahj Boyd, in a gritty performance that saw his helmet come off multiple times, led the ACC Tigers to 10 consecutive points to close the game.

Frazier could have worked out the kinks last year. (Credit: Kevin C. Cox, Getty Images)

Auburn, like Tennessee, is adjusting to a new defensive coordinator with ex-Georgia assistant Brian Van Gorder. Named the Frank Broyles “Assistant of the Year” in 2003, he should have Auburn much better on defense this year with DEs Corey Lemonier and Dee Ford coming off the edge. Also like the Vols, the Tigers are experimenting with what they have in their offensive backfield. RB Onterio McCalebb has always been an edge runner, but RB Tre Mason showed out with 100+ yards last night. Auburn goes to Starkville next week to open conference play against Mississippi State.

Aubie oversees Phil’s work

Phil Neel, the former Birmingham Post-Herald artist who created Aubie in 1957 for Auburn media guide and program covers, passed away last month at the age of 84 from non-Hodgkins lymphoma. His three children — Mike, Rick and Cindy — all graduated from Auburn, and his sons played for the Tigers in the 1970s.

First appearing on the 1957 Auburn media guide, the Aubie cartoon became a rallying point for the Auburn family as the Tigers won the first nine games the cartoon appeared on program covers, capturing the 1957 National Championship in the process.

Aubie gives Cousin Clem a dynamite welcome to Cliff Hare Stadium in 1961

Aubie graced home programs from 1957-1976, a stretch that saw Shug Jordan’s teams go 63-16-2 with the cartoon fighting off rivals on the front cover. He made a return appearance for Auburn’s last “home” game against Alabama at Legion Field in Birmingham in 1991.

The cartoon spawned the popular Aubie mascot that has roamed Auburn’s sidelines for decades.

Neel even lent his services to Clemson after “Cousin Clem” was featured on many Auburn-Clemson program covers in the 1960s-70s.

The good folks at The War Eagle Reader — an Auburn blog if you couldn’t guess — have chronicled much of Neel’s Aubie work.

Wish we could have gotten one more out of him this week. Thank you, Phil, and War Eagle.

The Palmetto Auburn Club couldn’t care less about living close to Lake Hartwell

The late Southern columnist and humorist Lewis Grizzard once remarked that Clemson was just Auburn with a lake, and every time the two Tigers tee it up that joke makes the rounds. Of course, Grizzard was a well-known Georgia fan and it was his way of tweaking both rivals.

But the programs do have strong similarities and a long history with each other, which was revived in the 2007 Chick-fil-A Bowl and regular season match-ups in 2010 and 2011. Auburn leads the series, which dates back to 1899, 34-12-2.

Auburn and Clemson claim two of the best stadium entrances in college football. Nova, Auburn’s War Eagle VII, circles Jordan-Hare Stadium pre-game and Clemson players touch Howard’s Rock — a rock from Death Valley, Calif., to Death Valley, S.C. as it goes — and run down the hill, which was once described as the most exciting 25 seconds in college football.

Nova, War Eagle VII, Auburn

Howard’s Rock, Clemson

The two schools have shared commonalities between their head football coaches. John Heisman became Auburn’s fifth head coach in 1895, leading the Plainsmen for five seasons before leaving for Clemson in 1900. He led the Palmetto State Tigers for four seasons before directing Georgia Tech for 16 (1904-1919).

Former Clemson head coaches Charley Pell (1977-1978) and Danny Ford (1978-1989), who led Clemson to its only National Championship in 1981, both played and coached for Bear Bryant at Alabama, and former Auburn head coach Pat Dye (1981-1992) coached under Bryant as well. Unfortunately, another commonality between these three was NCAA sanctions.

Finally, brothers Terry Bowden (1993-1998) and Tommy Bowden (1999-2008) led Auburn and Clemson, respectively.

John Heisman, arguably the most recognizable name in college football history, led both Auburn and Clemson

But perhaps the most important connection shared between Auburn and Clemson is that of Walter Riggs. The Auburn graduate participated on Auburn’s first football team in 1892 and is known as the “father of Clemson football” after arriving in 1896 to coach Clemson’s first team. He served as Clemson’s president from 1910-1924 and Riggs Hall, home to Clemson’s College of Engineering and Science, is named in his honor.

Clemson’s Tiger nickname is speculated to have been named after Auburn’s nickname with Riggs’ — and later Heisman’s — arrival, but that isn’t completely clear.

The two Tigers tee it up for the 49th time Saturday night in the second game of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Classic.