Clemson-Wake Forest Grades

C.J. Spiller

Following each game, each phase of the Clemson team will be given a letter grade. Here are this week's grades following the Tigers' 27-17 win at Wake Forest:

OFFENSE: C-minus
Through the first three quarters of the game, the Clemson offense practically didn't exist. Quarterback Will Proctor had thrown three interceptions and lost a fumble. But with the game on the line, the offense managed to get it in gear and produce three touchdowns and a total of 24 points. The fourth quarter was the type of performance we had expected the entire game.

DEFENSE: A
As seems to be the norm, the defense was put in horrible positions time and time again. And minus a few bad plays here and there, it stood strong. One play that may get overshadowed is Clemson's forced and recovered fumble at its own 1 on the Demon Deacons' first possession of the game. Then in the fourth quarter, it the defense forced turnover after turnover, which allowed the Tigers to get back into the game and eventually win it.

SPECIAL TEAMS: F
Awful, dreadful, terrible, appalling, dire, poor, bad, horrendous, heinous, disturbing, ugly, hideous, revolting, repugnant, gruesome, unsightly, brutal, vile, atrocious, despicable, inexcusable, unspeakable, pitiful, unbearable and horrific pretty much sums it up.

COACHING: C
The staff gets a failing grade for not fixing all the problems with the special teams, but a high grade for not letting the team fold the tents, even when it seemed everything was going against them. Combine the two grades and the average is a C.

OVERALL: C-plus
A performance like this against a high quality team would no doubt have netted a loss. Clemson can't just expect to turn on the switch in the fourth quarter and expect to win. The first three quarters resembled the Texas A&M game of 2004, while the fourth quarter looked like South Carolina game of 2003. The Tigers showed guts, but also some chinks in the armor.

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