Sports

Clemson Lucks Out

Third-ranked Clemson University’s football team escaped Raleigh, N.C. with a 26-14 victory over the unranked N.C. State Wolfpack – but the Tigers (3-0, 1-0 ACC) needed a blown call from the Atlantic Coast Conference officiating crew to keep their national championship dreams alive. With Clemson leading N.C. State 13-7 midway…

Third-ranked Clemson University’s football team escaped Raleigh, N.C. with a 26-14 victory over the unranked N.C. State Wolfpack – but the Tigers (3-0, 1-0 ACC) needed a blown call from the Atlantic Coast Conference officiating crew to keep their national championship dreams alive.

With Clemson leading N.C. State 13-7 midway through the third quarter, Wolfpack wide receiver Bryan Underwood took a handoff from quarterback Pete Thomas and raced 83 yards down the right sideline for what should have been a go-ahead touchdown (pending the extra point).

But the ACC officials incorrectly ruled that Underwood had stepped out of bounds at the Clemson 47-yard-line – stripping him of the touchdown.

Here’s a video of the play, which shows Underwood’s run from multiple angles …

Yeah … that’s a touchdown, people.

So why didn’t the coaching staff at N.C. State (2-1, 0-1 ACC) challenge the call? They couldn’t. Out-of-bounds calls outside the five-yard-line are – per NCAA rules – not reviewable. Also the play had been blown dead.

“It was right in front of me,” N.C. State head coach Dave Doeren said after the game. “He didn’t go out of bounds. Unfortunately they blew it dead so they couldn’t review it. It’s an unfortunate deal. I know the guy felt bad about it. You can’t do anything about it. That’s just the way it is.”

Three plays later, N.C. State fumbled the football – and five plays after that Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd hit wide receiver Martavis Bryant for a 30-yard touchdown strike, turning what should have been a 14-13 Wolfpack lead turned into a 20-7 Clemson advantage.

Now … we’re not saying N.C. State is better than Clemson. And clearly Boyd and Bryant – as well as Tigers’ defensive lineman Vic Beasley (who forced the N.C. State fumble) – had a lot to do with the game-changing momentum shift.

But the Tigers caught a huge, undeserved break that materially contributed to their win … keeping them undefeated and in the thick of the national championship conversation.

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57 comments

NSJS September 20, 2013 at 9:37 am

House of Cards

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Norma Scok September 21, 2013 at 10:07 am

You can only hope.

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Finius Nullis September 20, 2013 at 9:42 am

Although I’m not a fan of either team, that missed call really sucks. In any case NC made Clemson sweat (good) by not getting a blowout score spread. GO COCKS!

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BillC123 September 20, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Yeah, for minute there I thought I was watching USC vs. NC State.

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Smirks September 20, 2013 at 9:45 am

That was definitely in. Damn. Poor kid.

If it had been a score, it would’ve changed up the game a bit, but I’m not sure if Clemson would’ve actually lost in the end. What is clear, though, is that Clemson really needs to watch it. NC State should have been a blowout. Don’t beat the best teams you face only to lose to one of the weaker ones.

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Charlemagne, King of France September 20, 2013 at 10:09 am

you mean definitely out
http://i41.tinypic.com/xfrhpd.jpg

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Smirks September 20, 2013 at 11:48 am

That looks too blurry. I took a screenshot from the video FITS posted (granted from YouTube it will be pixelated).

http://i.imgur.com/vQk2o5n.jpg

He looks in to me.

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Trevor Bauknight September 20, 2013 at 1:57 pm

If you guys are still arguing about it the next day, how should the ref have made the right call in real time?

The bottom line is that the whistle blew. Over.

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Smirks September 20, 2013 at 2:03 pm

still arguing about it the next day

Quite honestly, I didn’t watch the game last night, so I didn’t know about it until today.

Just because it was a mistake doesn’t mean the ref didn’t make a bad call. Football isn’t the only sport where bad calls are made. It wasn’t too long ago where a MLB pitcher got a perfect game ruined for him when the umpire called a batter safe when he was clearly out. Umpire even admitted it later, saying he felt awful about it.

It’s part of the game, but I can’t blame someone for being upset, especially the player in this instance.

BeaufortTiger September 20, 2013 at 10:17 am

This was a trap game; one that most Clemson fans knew would be closer for comfort. If it was a regular Saturday game, Clemson would’ve won by more. However, CU typically plays lousy on Thursday night games, and Raleigh is probably the third or fourth toughest place to play in the ACC. Considering they’ve beaten FSU or Clemson in each of the last three years, I’m happy that the Tigers got a W, despite playing their most inconsistent game since the Orange Bowl two years ago.

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TontoBubbaGoldstein September 20, 2013 at 1:12 pm

Before the game, no one that TBG talked to gave NC State a snowball’s chance… TBG patiently explained why they are called “upsets”. TGB is very happy we got out of Raleigh with a “W”.

TBG also thought the Pack player stayed in bounds. TBG was at a game in Death Valley (many years ago) when Maryland made a desperation heave to the end zone. The ball went straight through the receivers hands, hit his knee and bounced up on The Hill. Refs signaled TD. Danny Ford argued and was banned from the sideline from the following years game in Maryland. Two wrongs don’t make a right, but….

This year,TBG also fears the turtle.

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Slartibartfast September 20, 2013 at 1:21 pm

Watched it in real time. The ESPN crew ran it from several angles over and over. The ESPN crew pronounced it DEFINITELY in. I had to agree. But I also think the first called back TD was a bogus call, too. We need a definitive definition of both holding and clipping (block in the back). Of course, you already know my opinion of most college officiating.

And God help me, I’ve agreed with Smirks, again! Dang!

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Smirks September 20, 2013 at 1:55 pm

*laughs maniacally*

uh oh September 20, 2013 at 12:28 pm

Yes you are correct, and SCAR/Vandy should have too. ;)

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Smirks September 20, 2013 at 2:07 pm

Vandy gets the better of us more often than I’d like to admit. Heck, I remember when we beat #1 ranked Alabama in 2010 only to go to the very next game against unranked Kentucky and lose.

It goes both ways I suppose. I just don’t want to see Clemson get their first loss, at least not until they play us. :)

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Norma Scok September 20, 2013 at 3:47 pm

But UCS fan logic says the Vandy 10 point win at home is better than a 12 point NC State win, away. Why?
SEC something, of course.

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Trevor Bauknight September 20, 2013 at 4:23 pm

“USC fan logic”

You lost me right there.

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TontoBubbaGoldstein September 20, 2013 at 1:20 pm

State is better than people give them credit for. You knew they were going to be up for a nationally televised home game against #3 Clemson, who they played close last year and beat the year before. TBG suspects that State was already preparing for Clemson the week before the Richmond game, which would explain their pisspo performance against the Spiders.

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CL September 20, 2013 at 10:03 am

I just hope this game silences the “thug” allegations Clemson fans like to hurl at other schools. The Battle uppercut and the constant throat slash gestures the refs were ignoring were ridiculous.

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Charlemagne, King of France September 20, 2013 at 10:09 am

battle will likely sit the rest of the season

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CL September 20, 2013 at 10:33 am

Unlikely. I would guess he gets a 1 game suspension from the ACC. Blount is the only time I recall that ever happening, and I think that one was an overreaction by Oregon and was more egregious. It was after the game was over, the BSU player was not even looking and had his helmet off – although Battle did uppercut under the NC State player’s helmet.

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CNSYD September 23, 2013 at 5:11 pm

Action has been taken in regard to Battle and Bryant. So crawl back in your hole.

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CL September 23, 2013 at 8:49 pm

LOL. That disciplinarian Dabo gave him the same punishment you get for targeting during game play. I guess since it is your next game it is better than the T. Bowden floating suspension against a patsy to be named later. Although it probably doesn’t make too much difference in ACC play. And Dabo keeps saying he was immediately remorseful. I must have missed a quick show of remorse before the camera showed him joking on the sidelines with his teammates.

What was done to Bryant? I had not seen anything about a suspension.

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CNSYD September 23, 2013 at 9:52 pm

Just because you were not called by Dabo does not mean that Bryant was not punished. He will sit out a half this week. BTW, I know it would be a stretch for a dirtpecker, but you might want to see why Battle slugged the wolfie. I guess it is OK with you that the wolfie ran his mouth and then spit on Battle.

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CL September 24, 2013 at 8:52 am

Lighten up, Francis. I was seriously asking what the response was to Bryant, because I could not find it anywhere after doing a Google news search. Apparently Dabo did call you, so thanks for the info.

I don’t expect you to be rational about this given the tone of your response, but words do not justify Battle’s cowardly and malicious response. So yes, it is absolutely fine with me if he was running his mouth. Happens on every play in every game. Spitting would not justify the assault, either, assuming there was any evidence that that even happened. You cite none. If it is Dabo, I would note he is the one who also made the ridiculous claim that Battle showed immediate remorse. Dabo should have checked the game tape before going with that story.

And, FWIW, I think the Blount suspension was overkill. But I do think he and Battle deserve a 2-3 game suspension. There is just no place for that in sports.

Charlemagne, King of France September 20, 2013 at 10:08 am Reply
CL September 20, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Not quite. Here is the overhead of the same step, shows he clearly is in bounds. http://media.247sports.com/Uploads/Assets/390/80/1080390.jpg

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Norma Scok September 20, 2013 at 3:44 pm

I don’t know those two match up; there’s not much of a way to cast a shadow on something from that angle–that is, unless you are on top of it.

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CL September 20, 2013 at 4:05 pm

The side view could be open for debate on whether he was in or out, but the overhead shot is beyond debate (at least for anyone who is not a homer). It shows grass between his foot and the chalk. He was in.

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Norma Scok September 20, 2013 at 4:20 pm

No doubt–but when was that taken? 1/4 second and a step in either direction might show the foot on the line.

CL September 20, 2013 at 4:37 pm

It is obvious that both photos are showing the same step. His body positioning and his positioning relative to the yard lines is consistent in both. So unless you are arguing that he hopscotched at full sprint one step to his left before the overhead photo (without any of the viewers noticing), that does not make any sense.

Norma Scok September 20, 2013 at 11:45 pm

You’re right. Its *all* a conspiracy to make sure Clemson wins all their games, because the ACC has to have ONE team win everything so they can still be considered “relevant”. The SEC has owned every other college football team for so long that the the men who control all the money made from college football got together at their yearly Bilderburg meeting and decided that income was dropping from college football game revenue. They had to do SOMETHING to fix it…so now CLEMSON HAS TO WIN ALL OF THEIR GAMES! The fix is in!!

TontoBubbaGoldstein September 21, 2013 at 7:56 am

The Illuminati, Tri-lateralists and Papists (Notre Dame) control college football. The Bilderburgers have nothing to do with it.

Sheesh.

The ignorance on this board is astounding.

CL September 21, 2013 at 9:04 am

Feel better? I take from your little rant you are moving on from ignoring the obvious, that it was a blown call.

Norma Scok September 21, 2013 at 10:03 am

I don’t think it was a blown call. I don’t know his his right foot could cast a shadow from this angle when its obvious all his weight is on it. His foot is covering up part of the line, meaning he stepped on the line–so the player is out.

When did UCS fans become such NC State fans?

CL September 21, 2013 at 1:59 pm

You could just type homer over and over again rather than pretend you cant see that his foot was in from the overhead.

Who is UCS?

nah September 20, 2013 at 10:26 am

indisputable video evidence?

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Charlemagne, King of France September 20, 2013 at 10:34 am

the play was whistled dead, there is no replay overturn for that. once the whistle blows then the plays over. no takebacks. clemson was on the shit end of the stick a couple times last night because of that. happens to everyone.

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nah September 20, 2013 at 12:20 pm

look at the video. even if it was reviewable, do you think they had indisputable evidence that he was inside? my gut reaction says it looks like he is in but would anyone say that it is indisputable?

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Libtard September 20, 2013 at 11:24 am

I had no idea so many South Carolina fans were also N.C. State fans.

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a face in the crowd September 20, 2013 at 12:21 pm Reply
TontoBubbaGoldstein September 20, 2013 at 1:27 pm

Sumbeesh had it coming!!!

*I keed.
I keed!*

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Trevor Bauknight September 20, 2013 at 1:58 pm

Seriously, did anybody ask either player what prompted the punch? Not something that usually happens out of the blue.

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Charlemagne, King of France September 20, 2013 at 2:10 pm

i dont have the clip handy, but if you watch the whole thing it Battle was walking away, the other kid cocked his head back and thrust it forward, then battle looked down at his arm like something hit it….basically it looks like the kid hocked a loogy at the boy from brooklyn and got knocked right in the kisser for it.

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Norma Scok September 21, 2013 at 10:06 am

Not sure its a sucker punch. It wasn’t like he didn’t see it coming.

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uh oh September 20, 2013 at 12:25 pm

Clemson fan here. Okay, yep Clemson did not look good. Yep bad call for NC State. Yep, sucker punch by Clemson player was pathetic. But, seriously SCAR??? You guys are the king of luck! Take care of your own program. We could careless about yours. We only care when we play you all. Like your players have not done classless things on the field??? Ba ha ha! Right…

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BillC123 September 20, 2013 at 12:58 pm

As if the dirt peckers haven’t had a call go their way before.

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Norma Scok September 20, 2013 at 3:50 pm

NEVER! It’s always a conspiracy against them. “The push off”. Food poisoning, bone spurs, Ron Morris…The world obviously hates USC, and has it against them.

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TontoBubbaGoldstein September 20, 2013 at 4:06 pm

“The push off.”

Only in their little chicken brains…

Rod Gardner “achieved separation”. Nothing less. Nothing more.

**Smiles**

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Norma Scok September 20, 2013 at 4:24 pm

The best part about that play is that everyone in that stadium knew what the play was going to be. There was nothing left for Clemson to do but a long pass. If Holtz had any coaching ability, he would have told his DE’s to take out the receivers at the line of scrimmage, take the 5 yard penalty, and the game was over.

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VoiceofReason September 22, 2013 at 1:29 pm

Too bad that Dirt Pecker U is a much better school than SCar.

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BillC123 September 23, 2013 at 12:29 pm

You do realize that Dirt Pecker U is USC don’t you?

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Slartibartfast September 20, 2013 at 1:15 pm

Again, we have witnessed the worst football officiating in the land. Clemson’s win is clouded by poor officiating. It has nothing to do with luck. Clemson is an excellent football team which had a bad night. But there were two touchdowns for State called back, making the Clemson win – which it would have been anyway – seem tainted somehow.

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TontoBubbaGoldstein September 20, 2013 at 1:34 pm

TBG fervently hopes that the season will work out to where Wolfpack fans can have some consolation in knowing that, if not for crappy officiating, they mighta beat the future National Champions.

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Trevor Bauknight September 20, 2013 at 1:54 pm

If they blow the whistle, the play is over. Period.

They’re called officials for a reason, homer.

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SCBlues September 20, 2013 at 5:30 pm

It was not a pretty win. But to say that the only reason that Clemson won was due to this alleged “bad call” is pure BS.

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Elbow September 22, 2013 at 7:58 pm

I think everyone here is missing the simple fact that it’s NOT necessarily the foot that’s out of bounds, it’s the ELBOW! Anyone with any inkling of a brain knows the shoulders are wider than the feet and the arm/elbow is to the right of the shoulder so, if the foot is on the line the elbow has to be out of bounds. Nuff said.

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