Clelin Ferrell knows the next week is going to be tough on Clemson, who dropped to No. 7 in the Associated Press top 25 football poll on Sunday following Friday’s loss at unranked Syracuse.
The Orange outplayed, outhustled and outcoached the Tigers in the Carrier Dome. To make matters worse, Ferrell and the Clemson defense had no answer for Syracuse quarterback Eric Dungey and the Orange offense. These are things that don’t usually happen to a 23-point favorite.
“The whole country is going to be talking about this,” Ferrell said. “If anybody in that locker room did not feel like that was a big game, then watch TV for the next two weeks. It is going to be the talk of the town.”
Ferrell says losing always hurts, but this loss hurts even more because of how they lost. The defensive end admitted they were not ready for the intensity and energy Syracuse’s players came out with.
“It was one of those games where we just did not come out to play,” Ferrell said. “We understand we play to a standard here, and maybe we did not realize we are going to get everybody’s best and when we do not play to our standard, which is the best, then other teams’ best can be better. We just did not come ready to play.”
Linebacker Dorian O’Daniel said he can’t say enough good things about Syracuse because it just came out and simply played better than the Tigers. However, he also said most of the plays the Orange had, such its 66 yard touchdown pass and a 45-yard run by the quarterback, were things Clemson could control but they did not pay attention to the details or the little things in order to prevent such plays.
“They were not competitive plays,” he said. “They were just guys running freely, things that were completely controlled by us. It is not a knock on them, but I think we lost to Clemson.”
Now, the Tigers (6-1, 4-1 ACC) will have to wait around an extra week to redeem themselves and in the meantime they have hear all the negative things that are going to be said about them until they get back on the field on Oct. 28 against Georgia Tech.
“We don’t pay attention to it, but we know we are going to get that pressure from outside sources because we know that is what everybody is going to say,” Ferrell said. “They are going to say we are not that team everybody thought we were. But we know all of our goals are still on the table. Everything we want to achieve is still on the table. We have to have a windshield mentality and keep what is in the past in the past.”