Lawrence puts on show for Tigers

It’s on to ACC ti­tle game af­ter QB leads rout of Game­cocks

Chicago Tribune (Sunday) - - COLLEGE FOOTBALL - By Pete Ia­co­belli

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Dabo Swin­ney sim­ply couldn’t con­tain his joy over Trevor Lawrence, and mid­way through the Tigers’ lat­est blowout, the Clem­son coach just had to let him know.

“Man,” Swin­ney said he told Lawrence, “it’s just so much fun watch­ing you play quar­ter­back.”

Swin­ney should get at least a cou­ple of more op­por­tu­ni­ties to see Lawrence shine in the post­sea­son, start­ing Satur­day with the ACC cham­pi­onship game against Vir­ginia.

Lawrence threw for 295 yards and three touch­downs as the third-ranked Tigers won their 27th straight and fin­ished their sec­ond con­sec­u­tive 12-0 reg­u­lar sea­son with a 38-3 vic­tory over rival South Carolina on Satur­day.

Lawrence, who led Clem­son to a na­tional ti­tle as a fresh­man, showed off a full range of skills with high­light-show touch­down throws to Tee Hig­gins and a knack for run­ning the Tigers out of trou­ble.

Lawrence fin­ished 26 of 36 pass­ing and com­pleted an ACC-record-ty­ing 18 straight throws to keep the Tigers rolling. He also led Clem­son with 66 rush­ing yards, sev­eral of his runs go­ing for first downs.

“Af­ter this year’s over and see if we ac­com­plish what we set out to do, then we take a step back,” Lawrence said. “But I don’t think there’s re­ally any time to do that right now. We re­ally want to en­joy this win, but Mon­day get right back to it and pre­pare for Vir­ginia.”

Travis Eti­enne ran for two touch­downs to break ACC records for ca­reer touch­downs from scrim­mage (57) and rush­ing scores (53) as the Tigers dom­i­nated through­out on the way to a sixth straight win over the Game­cocks (4-8).

Lawrence had touch­down throws of 10 and 65 yards to Hig­gins and 16 yards to Justyn Ross.

“This is where we are sup­posed to be. And this is what we do,” Clem­son coof­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor Jeff Scott said.

Clem­son’s de­fense did its part in the beat­down, hold­ing the Game­cocks to 174 yards and con­tin­u­ing a run in which the

Tigers have lim­ited all 12 op­po­nents to fewer than 300 yards of to­tal of­fense.

South Carolina, which gained 600 yards in this game a year ago, strug­gled to make any­thing hap­pen against Clem­son’s front­line de­fense. The Game­cocks had 99 yards at half­time, and their only score was Parker White’s 39-yard field goal.

It was South Carolina’s fewest points against Clem­son since a 45-0 shutout in 1989.

Game­cocks coach Will Muschamp did not want to list the things he be­lieves caused his team to strug­gle, say­ing it would sound like ex­cuses.

“The bot­tom line is we weren’t pro­duc­tive and we need to get bet­ter,” he said.

STREETER LECKA/GETTY

Trevor Lawrence (16) re­acts af­ter a Clem­son touch­down against South Carolina.

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