By Ashley Denny.
CLEMSON, SC- After talking to Clemson’s quarterback Tajh Boyd Wednesday, it’s safe to say that he isn’t used to losing. Boyd, who compares the Tigers’ loss to Georgia Tech last weekend to a death in the family, had not lost a game in which he was starting at quarterback since his junior year in high school, so it is very unfamiliar territory to him.
“It’s definitely disappointing, you don’t expect to ever lose honestly,” Boyd said. “Especially when you can control what’s going on, I don’t plan on losing anymore I can tell you that. The feeling of loss isn’t something I can get accustomed to. When you’re out there in the heat of the battle and you have the opportunity to score and win the game but it doesn’t work out, that’s one of the most disappointing feelings in life. Personally I think losing a football game and a death in the family are the most devastating things, other than that I can handle it. Those are the two things that are just hard to deal with for me.”
How has the team dealt with the loss?
“You’ve got to be positive with it,” Boyd said. “The biggest thing that we have to do as a team is it’s not that we lost but how we respond to it. Last time when we went 8-1, we lost the last three games, but I feel like this is a different team in that sense and we’ll come back stronger and hungrier than before. It’s almost like when you’re 8-0 you have a sense that you’re invincible and even at halftime we didn’t panic and thought we’d come back out and be fine and drop 40 in the third quarter, but you can’t think that way when you’re playing a team that controls the ball that way.”
One thing that Boyd and the offense will be working during the remainder of the season to do is starting quicker.
“I feel like if we could’ve put more points on the board in the first half, there may have been a different outcome against Georgia Tech,” Boyd said. “They were a great team, but we also didn’t help ourselves out. There’s nothing we can’t control, we just have to keep learning. We have no problem finishing, which was a problem with teams in the past. You can’t take drives for granted, you have to score and not say oh we’ll score on the next drive because what will happen if you don’t?”
As for the possibility of playing Georgia Tech again in the ACC Championship, Boyd didn’t want to look past the good Wake Forest team coming to Death Valley on the 12th, but said if the Tigers’ did make it to Charlotte, they would bring their A-game against whatever team they were matched up against.
“I’d love to play those guys again,” Boyd said. “But personally, no matter who we play, whether it is Virginia, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, whoever you’ve just got to take it and run with it. Wake Forest is a division game, and they’re in the position that if they beat us, they’ll be going to the ACC Championship game. We’ve got to go into game day knowing that anything can happen and we just have to go out there and execute.”
On Boyd’s first interception against the Yellow Jackets, which came after a huge momentum shift for the Tigers’ after Rashard Hall intercepted Tevin Washington’s pass and returned it to the Yellow Jackets’ 9 yard line, Boyd said that it was definitely due to miscommunication between him and his intended target Sammy Watkins.
“It was miscommunication, something we probably should have talked about earlier,” Boyd said. “I threw a fade and he thought I was throwing a short route, and it was one of those things you can’t have in that situation after a turnover. If we would’ve scored, you never know what could have happened; it could have propelled us to win that game. But we try not to think about the what if’s too much, it’s a disgusting feeling, frustrating. You just have to continue to work and not let that loss get you down.”