When Clemson lost at Notre Dame on Nov. 7 in South Bend, Trevor Lawrence soaked it all in, especially when the students came up to him.
“Walking off that field, I remember the fans running on the field getting in our faces,” the quarterback said. “Obviously, it’s part of it. You remember those days and keep those images in your head when it comes to playing the game.”
Those images carried over to field last Saturday as Lawrence threw for 322 yards and two touchdowns, while running for 90 yards and another score in leading the Tigers to a 34-10 victory over Notre Dame in the ACC Championship Game.
“Yeah, I was with some of the guys in the locker room right after (the game in South Bend). So, we’ve kind of saw how it was going to play out.” he said. “And all we had to do was just take care of business, just to get that chance, and we did that two days after.”
Clemson (10-1) avenged its double overtime loss to the Irish by first taking care of business against Pittsburgh and Virginia and then routing Notre Dame in Charlotte. The win over the Irish earned Clemson a No. 2 seed in the College Football Playoff, where they will play No. 3 seed Ohio State in the Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day.
Like the Tigers felt following their loss in South Bend, the Buckeyes are hungry to avenge last year’s 29-23 loss to Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl, a win that sent Clemson back to the national championship game and Ohio State home.
After the Buckeyes were paired with Clemson in the two vs. three match-up in this year’s CFP, their players hit to social media explaining this is what they have wanted all along … another shot at Clemson.
After last year’s loss in the desert, Ohio State, the media who covers the Buckeyes and their fans claimed they got robbed by the officials. They thought they were the better team. They cried foul when Shaun Wade was ejected for targeting Lawrence, which allowed the Tigers to score their first touchdown in the second quarter. They cried foul again when Jordan Fuller’s touchdown return on a Justyn Ross fumble was overturned by replay officials and ruled as an incomplete pass.
These were the reasons the Tigers beat Ohio State, not the fact they blew a 16-0 lead or failed to convert in the red zone and settled for three field goals or could not stop Clemson late in the game when they had a 23-21 lead and had the Tigers backed up to their own six-yard line.
So, the Buckeyes wanted the Tigers. Now they got them. So, what are they going to do about it?
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