Tempers were mildly flaring before Miami and Clemson even put on full pads. A pregame warm-up shouting match may have been the most fight we could see from Miami today. The Hurricanes are being dominated on their home field by the Tigers, who lead Miami 42-0 at the halftime break.
Clemson marched right down the field on the game’s opening possession. An eight-play, 82-yard drive was finished off with a 34-yard touchdown strike from DeShaun Watson to Jordan Leggett for a quick 7-0 lead. Miami looked to be ready to answer on the ensuing possession, but Brad Kaaya was picked off by Jadar Johnson just inside the Clemson 20-yard line. It took just five plays for Clemson to add a second touchdown with Wayne Gallman running for a five-yard score at the end of a quick 84-yard drive fueled by a 63-yard run by Watson to the Miami 8-yard line. It has not gotten any prettier for Miami.
Zac Brooks and Artavis Scott each pushed into the end zone in short-yardage situations for scores later in the first half, with the two goal-line runners combining for four yards and two touchdowns. At one point Clemson had three touchdown drives that covered more yardage than Miami’s total offensive yardage output, with the Tigers putting together three touchdown drives of at least 80 yards.
Clemson’s offense scored its fifth touchdown of the half with one more 80+ yard scoring drive when Watson ran in from six yards out. With time dwindling, Miami took to the air to try and move into any type of position for a field goal, but Malik Rosier was picked off by Cordrea Tankersley, who returned the interception 36 yards for one more crushing blow before halftime. Rosier replaced Kaaya after the Miami starting quarterback left the game for medical attention in the locker room after taking a big hit early in the second quarter.
This one is flat out ugly, and Al Golden is running out of time and excuses.