What a game it was, folks! A colossal clash in college football that had fans on the edge of their seats, as Clemson took on Florida State in a matchup for the ages. The anticipation was palpable, with tailgating festivities kicking off at the crack of dawn, and the gates swinging open to welcome eager fans at 10 am. This was more than just a game; it was an event!
The Clemson faithful descended upon the streets, painting the town orange, while a sea of Seminoles fans made their presence felt, determined to show they were there and ready for action. To add to the excitement, this game was a Hall of Fame celebration for the Tigers, with eight distinguished individuals being inducted. With tickets sold out, the atmosphere was electric, marking the first sold-out game of the season for Clemson.
To gauge the intensity of the crowd's support, one only needed to look at the decibel meter, which consistently hovered around a thunderous 93-94 every time the Noles took the field. The Clemson fans roared with fervor whenever their Tigers were in action, whether it was a huddle, a defensive play, or a touchdown. It was a full-throttle display of loyalty and passion.
Both teams' initial drives ended in punts, and although FSU made more progress down the field, Clemson's rock-solid defense stood tall, showcasing why they are among the ACC's finest.
Clemson drew first blood with a field goal, taking a 3-0 lead with 1:47 left in the first quarter. The game's rhythm was disrupted in the second quarter when Clemson's Tyler Brown, a key part of the Tigers' offense, went down with an injury in the red zone. The Tigers managed to capitalize on costly penalties by FSU, adding another touchdown to their tally and stretching their lead to 10-0 with 11:33 remaining in the half.
As the first half unfolded, FSU's offense struggled to find its groove, facing an efficient Clemson defense that excelled at stopping the run. The Noles appeared to be a shadow of their dynamic selves from previous weeks, leaving fans wondering whether they were simply off their game or overwhelmed by the electric atmosphere.
FSU mounted a comeback with a touchdown late in the first half, closing the gap to 10-7. But Clemson responded swiftly with a touchdown by star player Will Shipley, extending their lead to, and there was no sign of the Tigers slowing down.
The third quarter began with FSU showcasing a newfound offensive spark with a 48- yard field goal. However, both defenses continued to shine, resulting in a fierce battle for momentum. Clemson seemed to maintain the game and never trailed which gave them the upper hand.
The pivotal moment arrived when FSU recovered a fumble for a touchdown, leveling the score at 24-24. The Noles were beginning to resemble the 2-point favorites they were projected to be. Clemson, having fallen out of the Top 25 Poll, was eager to make a statement and climb back into the rankings. Beating the No. 4 Seminoles would be a resounding way to achieve that goal and claim bragging rights once again for the 8th year.
In the waning moments of the fourth quarter, Clemson drove down the field but faced an intense FSU defensive stand, followed by a missed field goal. FSU had the ball with 1:35 left on the clock, and the crowd roared in anticipation. As the seconds dwindled to 18, FSU had to make a critical play, but an overthrown pass in the end zone dashed their hopes, sending Clemson's fans into a frenzy. Just for a moment when the crowd chanted their Clemson chat, they thought the game could be over.
Unfortunately, when Clemson got the ball back and had an opportunity to get down the field- at a crucial moment before time ran out with a big rush from Shipley- the Tigers needed to stop the clock but they had no timeouts left which led the game into over time. The stadium was buzzing with anticipation as FSU's Keon Coleman scored first in OT. One that happened so fast the crowd barely had time to react. Then, it was Clemson's chance to respond but ultimately fell short, as the Florida State Seminoles emerged victorious in overtime, winning 31-24. It was a true showdown, a battle to the very end.
After the game, Head Coach Dabo Swinney had this to say: