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Clemson Football

Heard in the Press Box: No. 9 Clemson 40, Miami 10

November 20, 2022

Clemson improved to 10-1 after a blowout win over Miami in Death Valley. Take a sneak peek into the press box to hear the chatter during the Tigers' victory.

Heard in the Press Box: 

- "The defense might be hitting their stride- I think the Notre Dame game was a wake-up call for them. They played freely, were aggressive, gang tackling, and showed off their speed." – Clemson reporter.

- "Aggression was the name of the game. They came out aggressive on offense- that was one of the best first quarters they've played all season." – Clemson reporter.

- "Defensively… Where was this the first half of the season?" – Clemson reporter.

Rumbled: Clemson's defense applied pressure on Miami freshman quarterback Jacurri Brown‍ early and often. The Tigers' front seven pinned their ears back and forced a three-and-out on Miami's opening drive. Jeremiah Trotter Jr.‍ came up with a big sack on the Hurricanes' second drive, which set the tone for that unit. Clemson dominated Miami's offense in the first half, forcing four three-and-outs and an interception in five drives.

Clemson held an opponent to under 100 yards for the first time this season. Miami only mustered 30 rushing yards and six first downs in the game. Clemson consistently kept the Hurricanes behind the chains with five sacks and seven tackles for loss.

Stumbled: Clemson turned the ball over on three consecutive possessions in the third quarter. Clemson fumbled an alarming five times in the game and lost two. The turnovers halted Clemson's momentum on multiple previously well-engineered drives. 

Key moment: D.J. Uiagalelei‍ looked composed throughout the game and connected with 11 receivers. One pivotal moment came in the second quarter when Uiagalelei threw a touchdown pass to senior tight end Luke Price.

Price typically serves as a blocker in the Clemson offense, but the play design sent him into the open space in the end zone, where he made an easy catch for the score.

Unsung hero: Jeremiah Trotter Jr.‍ is special. He recorded nine tackles, one sack, one tackle for loss, and one breakup in the game. Clemson's linebackers have come up big lately. Barrett Carter‍ stood out last week- but Trotter had one of his best games of the season against Miami.

Uiagalelei's rushing performance also merits a mention. He added an exciting element to Clemson's attack. He did it all as a rusher- from 'breaking ankles' to bowling through defenders in the end zone. Uiagalelei finished with 89 yards and a touchdown, averaging 5.2 yards per carry.

Key stat: Clemson was stellar on third downs and went 14-19 on conversion attempts. The team was a combined 13-39 on third downs in the past three games and just 4-13 last week against Louisville. The third down success rate against Miami was a much-needed step forward.

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