Tigers hopeful light bulb has come on for Dawes at point guard

Tigers hopeful light bulb has come on for Dawes at point guard


Tigers hopeful light bulb has come on for Dawes at point guard


Though Clemson lost for a second consecutive game this past Wednesday night at Virginia, it ultimately could be a blessing in disguise.


The Tigers might have seen the maturation process of its young point guard take a big step forward in Charlottesville, Virginia. Freshman Al-Amir Dawes gave Clemson a spark it needed in the second half as the Tigers nearly rallied to beat the Cavaliers for the first time in seven years.

Clemson, who will host Notre Dame today (6 p.m.) at Littlejohn Coliseum, trailed by 12 points at the break and scored just 14 points in the first half. However, in the second half, Dawes’ energy and ability to penetrate and create looks for his teammates against Virginia’s No. 1-ranked defense nearly got the Tigers over the top.

Clemson (11-11, 5-7 ACC) scored 30 second half points and had four opportunities late in the game to either tie or take the lead. The Tigers outscored Virginia 30-25 in the second half.

“I thought Al played exceptionally well against Virginia,” Clemson head coach Brad Brownell said. “He was aggressive. He was attacking the paint. He made some shots in there, made a couple of threes. He still needs to shoot it a little bit better and more consistently to be a really good player.”

Brownell and the Tigers are hopeful the confidence Dawes gained against Virginia can continue his improvement. The freshman made 5-of-12 shots and scored 11 points, while also grabbing 11 rebounds.

“What was equally evident was his ability to defend. He was getting through, around and over ball screens within the zone. He was doing it some in man,” Brownell said. “I thought his energy level gave our team a jolt.

“I thought he was the guy that got us going. That’s kind of how he is. He is an energy bug.”

So far this season, Dawes is averaging 7.8 points per game, including a career-high 19 points against Alabama A&M. A former 4-star recruit, he has played in all 22 of the Tigers’ games and started 17 of them.

Dawes is shooting 35.3 percent from the field and leads the team in assists, averaging 2.5 per game. He is also averaging 3.0 rebounds per game and is shooting 72.7 percent from the foul line.

“He is one of those guys that has great pace. You can’t coach that, guys just have it,” Brownell said. “It’s kind of a joy of playing the game that he has, but it is also the speed. I thought we needed that in the game, and I thought he was the guy that kind of got our motor going as a team.”

Clemson hopes Dawes’ motor can get it going tonight in an important ACC contest against Notre Dame that the Tigers desperately need to win.

At look at Notre Dame from our friends at Irish Sports Daily.com



After signing one cornerback as part of the 2021 class in four-star Nathaniel Wiggins, Clemson plans to take at least two corners in the 2022 class, possibly three. In our 


Last year, Clemson tied with Pitt for the national lead in sacks. The Tigers recorded 46 sacks, while dropping opposing quarterbacks for 307 yards, 27 more yards than any team in the country. Clemson ranked (…)


COLUMBIA — Andrew Eyster hit a walk-off double for a second day in a row to beat rival Clemson. This time the outfielder did it with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, as No. 16 South Carolina beat (…)


The Clemson Softball team completed the series sweep over Elon with an 8-0 victory in five innings on Sunday afternoon at McWhorter Stadium. The Tigers held Elon scoreless over the course of all three (…)


It didn’t take Andrew Mukuba long to make a good impression on his first day of practice at Clemson. The true freshman safety caught the eye of senior safety Nolan Turner when the Tigers opened spring (…)


Clemson dished out its latest scholarship offer on Saturday to one of the nation’s top offensive line prospects in the 2022 class. The Clemson Insider breaks down the Tigers’ latest offer right here: (…)

More The Clemson Insider