Deshaun Watson said he was coming out on Saturday with a renewed since of purpose and attitude. And his teammates followed suit.
Watson threw touchdown passes of 7 and 36 yards to Ray Ray McCloud and 17 yards to Deon Cain, while completing 12 of 15 passes for 152 yards as Clemson leads 45-0 at the break.
Backup quarterback Nick Schuessler was 4-for-5 passing for 64 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown pass to Diondre Overton.
The Tigers had 319 total yards in the opening half to S.C. State’s 55. Clemson’s defense forced two turnovers – a fumble and an interception. The Tigers scored 10 points off of those turnovers.
Up 14-0 with 5:20 to play in the opening quarter S.C. State’s Ahmaad Harris flipped the ball to the official without taking a knee after the Greg Huegel kick went in the end zone. He then realized it was still a live ball but Clemson’s Denzel Johnson recovered it for a touchdown and a 28-0 lead.
Huegel later made a 26-yard field goal after the Overton touchdown for a 31-0 lead.
Watson later hit McCloud for a 36-yard touchdown pass, putting the Tigers up 38-0 with 13:41 left in the second quarter. The two also connected in the first quarter on a seven-yard touchdown pass.
McCloud, now with a career-high two touchdowns, set up the score with a 31-yard punt return.