By Stan Welch
Well, some of my liberal readers – I know, I was surprised too – are whining – I know, I was surprised too – because I have been focusing on their beloved president and his minions, and the harm they have done to this country.
So, even though the shutdown continues because every time the Republicans give an inch, Obama and Reid demand a mile, I’m taking this week off from all the political lunacy and media prostitution to talk about something truly important.
Saturday, Death Valley will host the biggest Clemson football game in at least the last twenty five years, when the Florida State Seminoles come to town. Both teams are ranked in the top five nationally, and both are undefeated.
The game is crucial to both teams’ hopes for a national championship opportunity. But more immediately, the winner will almost certainly win the Coastal Division of the ACC, and go on to play in the conference championship. In today’s world of college football, it is very difficult to finish a season undefeated, so one loss is not an automatic season killer. But this loss probably would be – for either team.
Florida State seems to be regaining the shine it had back in Bobby Bowden’s glory days, while Clemson has made enormous strides since Coach Dabo Swinney has taken over from Bobby’s son, Tommy Bowden. That is just one of several interesting story lines attached to this game.
FSU has a freshman quarterback whose star is rising at a meteoric rate. Jameis Winston is a tremendous talent. Clemson quarterback Tahj Boyd is a senior, and a possible candidate for the Heisman Trophy. A main factor in the game will be whether Boyd’s experience plus talent will prevail over Winston’s unseasoned talent.
An enormous crowd will be on hand, and in an unprecedented move, ESPN’s flagship program, Game Day, will originate from the same campus twice in one season. The show was also on hand for Clemson’s season opener against Georgia. If both Clemson and Carolina, which Georgia subsequently beat, win all of their remaining games, Game Day may very well set up shop in Columbia for the season ending showdown between the two rivals.
If Clemson is undefeated and Carolina has just one loss, that game could very well decide which Palmetto State team goes on to play for a national championship. The hype and excitement around that game will almost certainly bring Game Day to Columbia.
In that case, Clemson would definitely make history by being involved in the Game Day phenomenon three times in one season. Carolina would be involved twice, since their game at Georgia was also the site of the show. Shoot, ESPN might just store their Game Day set in some mini warehouses and hang around.
As is the case at these huge sporting events, celebrities and politicians will abound. Every string that can be pulled to get a couple of tickets will be pulled, and tailgating, always an art form at Clemson, will reach new heights.
Governor Haley has announced that despite the government shutdown, Death Valley will not be closed, and that any WWII veterans, or any veterans for that matter, will be welcome to attend.
Oh yeah, Carolina will be out in Missouri playing those other tigers.