In each of his first two seasons at Clemson, Artavis Scott led the second-ranked Tigers in receptions.
During his freshmen season, the Clearwater, Florida native emerged as a playmaker, hauling in 76 passes for 965 yards and eight touchdowns. His best game came against rival South Carolina as he caught seven passes for a career-high 185 yards and two touchdowns.
His tip-toe down the near sideline to stay in bounds is one of the more famous touchdowns in the longstanding rivalry as he helped the Tigers’ snap a five-game losing streak to the Gamecocks with a 35-17 victory.
The following year, Scott stepped up after Mike Williams went down with a neck injury and led the Tigers in both receptions (93) and yards (901), while earning All-ACC First-Team honors.
After having two All-ACC caliber seasons to start his career, it was only natural to expect Scott again to be one of Clemson’s top pass catchers this season. However, that has not been the case.
Scott, thanks to the Tigers’ bevy of wide receivers and skill players, ranks second on the team in receptions, but through the first nine games he has just 38 catches for a respectable 329 yards and three touchdowns. This past Saturday’s win over Syracuse was the first time this season he led Clemson in a game, by himself, in receptions when he hauled in seven passes for 45 yards, including a five-yard touchdown pass from Nick Schuessler.
“I do what I do each and every week,” Scott said. “I go in with a mindset that I can’t worry about all that other stuff because that distracts me from what I have to do when my time comes. You can’t play this game perfect. You have to just got out there and play, and have fun.
“That is the one thing I think about. When I go out there, I cannot think about myself. I go out there and think about the team and do whatever they need me to do.”
Scott proved that when he slid into the slot position when teammate Hunter Renfrow went down with a broken hand in the second game of the season. Scott sacrificed his own goals for the betterment of the team and started the next four games in the slot.
“It is definitely frustrating (not making as many plays) because I like to make plays, but I’m a team player. I do what I have to do and if that means me getting my reps or whatever or catches (cut) it’s what happens. I just make the most of my opportunities when they come,” he said. “I’m going to do whatever I have to for the team. Obviously, that weighs over your head, but I’m having fun playing football.
“It gets frustrating, obviously, but I do what I have to do and I make the most of my opportunities every time I get them.”
With Williams back and leading the team with 52 catches for 754 yards, as well as having other playmakers like tight end Jordan Leggett, Deon Cain, Ray Ray McCloud and Renfrow, there are more targets and weapons for Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson to choose from.
“That is definitely something you have to think about because we have a lot of weapons on our team,” Scott said. “We have always had a lot of weapons at Clemson. That’s just one of the parts of playing football.
“There is always going to be other players that make plays. You know they have to get their touches. That’s not one of the things we think about when we play either. We just go out there and have fun.”