Following a loss to Ole Miss on the fourth Saturday in September, three years ago, Tim Tebow said of his Florida Gators, “You will never see a team play harder than we will the rest of the season” as part of his “promise speech,” that marked the turning point in Florida’s National Championship season.
While it may be too late for Clemson to follow in that path to a National Championship — after Saturday’s loss to Georgia Tech — make no mistake: There are several more Championships within the Tiger’s grasp. And, incidentally, EACH of Coach Dabo Swinney’s Team Goals is still up on the locker-room wall. This Summer, if Monty Hall or Wayne Brady had told me “Behind Door #3 is a November 8-1 Clemson Team within a win of a division Championship” I’d jumped on it like a pigeon on a french fry in Columbia (or a duck on a june bug in Walhalla, for that matter!)
Ironically, if Clemson wants to get through November with success– in my numbnut’s opinion at least– it only has to look at how Georgia Tech recovered from its losses.
We just pulled together,” Georgia Tech defensive back Jemea Thomas said to The Sporting News. “We knew we had to use each other to get through it and get it done. With adversity, you’ve either got to stand up or lay down. I think we’ve got the type of team where we’re going to stand up and come back and fight no matter how hard the situation is.”
Tech was the best team on the field last Saturday, because they were ready to be. Clemson has a bye week to think about that, and make sure it doesn’t happen again.
“It is disappointing, but I’m a player that hates to lose more than I like to win,” Tight end Dwayne Allen said after the game. “Anytime a loss comes on the record board for me, I’m sick. But, everything we want to accomplish from a team standpoint is still out there and that is what we are focusing on.”
Last week I said “…win or lose against GT” I was unconditionally thrilled with Clemson this year. While I’d hoped that prophesy didn’t get tested, it has. And I am. That’s what makes Clemson different. And Better. The Clemson family knows how to rally. So let’s Git ‘er Done folks: Championships are still there for the taking. One setback isn’t going to stop that, or shake our faith in the team. And that’s why we’re all-in.
by J.L. Mann Cromer, Jr, an Attorney licensed to practice in South Carolina, California &The District of Columbia. He received his BA in 1985 from Clemson University and his JD in 1988 from the University of South Carolina School of Law.