We’ve arrived at our first “I just don’t get it” college football team in the 77 in 77. I just don’t see why everyone is so high on the Clemson Tigers? They were an unimpressive 6-7 last year, and an even more unimpressive 4-4 in the extremely blah ACC. Their defense could take a couple steps backward this year, after losing some guys to the NFL, including Da’Quan Bowers, one of the most talked about picks in the 2011 draft.
And the D carried last year’s squad, because the offense was a train wreck. And the special teams was lacking as well. People must REALLY be high on new offensive coordinator Chad Morris
2010 was: mediocre and blah. Clemson finished 4th in a very uninspiring ACC Atlantic Division. Losing to South Florida in a very unfortunately named bowl game. The Tigers finished in the high 70s and high 80s nationally in all the major offensive categories. And they were an abominable 111th in red zone efficiency. They were very solid on d though, top 20 in almost all major categories including 13th in points per game allowed.
BMOCs: QB Tajh Boyd is a major question mark. How far you think this team can go depends on how much of a “sleeper” you believe him to be. Andre Ellington and Mike Bellamy are elite backs. Top returning talent on defense include LB Quandon Christian, S Rashard Hall, and DT Brandon Thompson
2011 will be fruitful if: the offense improves dramatically from last year. Coach Dabo Swinney believes that Morris can truly revolutionize this unit, as he’s good friends with Gus Malzhan the guru of go from Auburn, and before that Oregon. The defense should be stout once again, but not as good as last year.
2011 will be awful if: The WRs and Boyd can’t connect when they throw the ball. The receiving corps is the team’s second biggest weakness? #1 is the kicking game, as Chandler Catanzaro is a very, very weak starting placekicker. Clemson missed 7 kicks inside the the 38 last season.
Bottom Line: In the ACC, anyone can go 6-6. Because the conference is (with the exception of Florida State, Virginia Tech and Miami, maybe NC St. and Maryland) mostly a crapfest. (But hey, at least it’s not as bad as the Big East). But if Clemson’s passing game and kicking game is at least serviceable, the Tigers should go back to a bowl.
BC Rankings: #38 Athlon, #30 Lindy’s, #30 Phil Steele
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