Contrasting performances

Chad Kelly

CLEMSON - Cole Stoudt played well on Saturday. Chad Kelly didn't. Stoudt also played in the second half and stuck around to speak to reporters afterwards, Kelly did neither.

Stoudt completed 15 of 23 passes for 158 yards with two touchdowns and led the White team to a 24-5 win over the Orange squad.

Kelly, who was the starting quarterback for the Orange, completed 10 of 18 passes for 113 yards with two interceptions. The redshirt sophomore didn't play in the second half.

Dabo Swinney called it a coaches' decision.

"I just didn't like how he responded to coach [Chad] Morris and coach [Jeff] Scott," Swinney said. "It's the decision that Chad and them came to. I said, ‘Yeah, absolutely.' It was a coaches' decision. That's it."

Morris offered a similar assessment.

"I didn't like the way he handled some adversity, with the situation on the fourth-down, whether to punt or not, just a frustration level with the coaches on the sideline," Morris said. "We're just not going to do that."

At the intermission, it was decided that Kelly wouldn't play in the second half.

"This doesn't need to overshadow the entire spring," Morris said, "Because has had a good spring, done a lot of really good things. We've had a great battle, I've been saying that all spring long. It's just unfortunate it came to this. It is what it is."

In the heat of Saturday's intra-squad battle, Kelly let his emotions get the best of him.

"I think Chad is a great competitor. Sometimes that works against him," Morris said. "He's just so competitive, wants to win at everything he does. I love that. That's what makes him special. He got a little frustrated today. I hated that for him. He's had a good spring."

Kelly, according to both coaches, is still in the mix for the starting job. One performance won't determine that.

"With any of these quarterbacks, you hate to gauge an entire spring on a spring game," Morris said. "Obviously, we wish that wouldn't have happened. Everything counts. That's kind of what we've talked about from the get-go. He's had a good spring.

"I'm sure he wishes he had that moment back, but it was a spring game. It was an opportunity to deal with some adversity, that's kind of part of splitting this thing up."

Swinney added, "If we kept practicing, tomorrow might be a different story.

"But, today, Cole Stoudt had the better day, was the better leader, was more poised and handled the situation that was in front of him better. Everybody could see that today."

Stoudt was happy with his performance on Saturday.

"I went out there and did what I could do. I made the right reads, although I know I missed a few, I'm not perfect," he said. "I'll go back and watch film tonight or tomorrow with my dad and see what I did so I can work on that for the rest of spring, in the summer and into the fall. But I felt good with how I did today. I had a good spring and I'm kind of excited for how this fall will turn out."

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