As the offense got off to a slow start for the first three quarters in second-ranked Clemson’s 34-7 win over Boston College this past Saturday, the Tigers relied heavily on their defense to hold the Eagles down.
Clemson’s defense held BC to a season-low 238 total yards and 3.6 yards per play, including just 97 yards on the ground.
“We learned today that we can win the game in a lot of different ways,” Clemson defensive tackle Christian Wilkins said. “Every game this year has been different and we won those games in different ways. A game like this is always good. Sometimes you have got to play a hard-nose game. They came out and tested us. It’s always a good thing.”
Though the Eagles (1-3, 0-2 ACC) did not mount much offense on Saturday, they did produce a third-quarter touchdown from running back A.J. Dillon that tied the game at seven with 3:30 to go in the quarter.
“BC did a good job coming in here and they played extremely physical around the ball and they are very well coached,” said Wilkins, who was named Clemson’s defensive player of the game by the coaching staff, along with linebacker Kendall Joseph. “We knew that they played great defense and they like to run the ball. Hats off to them because they came in here ready to play.
“You know, you’ve got to have games like this. Like I said, BC is a really good team they play really physical football. If you play like they did, you can take on anyone. It does not matter who you play or where you play.”
In three of the Tigers’ four wins so far this year, the defense has allowed a combined 16 points. Clemson (4-0, 2-0 ACC) currently ranks third in the country, yielding just 9.3 points per game.
“You want to do the best you can every time you step on the field,” said Wilkins who had six tackles and was disruptive all afternoon. “We always prepare with that each week. We have a lot of guys on the team who are hungry and who are humble. Each week we start over. It doesn’t matter who we beat last week or the week before. There is always room to improve, with every game we will continue to improve.”