N.C. State has played Clemson close the past few years in the Textile Bowl but will need to step things up quite a bit in the second half if they want to hang with the No. 3 team in the country down the stretch in the pair’s ACC showdown on Saturday afternoon.
Playing in front of a fired up crowd in Death Valley, the Tigers jumped out to a 24-0 lead at halftime in a score line that didn’t even indicate the home team’s dominance over the No. 16 Wolfpack early on.
Leading the way for Clemson was young quarterback Trevor Lawrence, who remarkably was up to 28 attempts in the game already and wound up throwing for 244 yards and a touchdown in his biggest test to date. Favorite target Tee Higgins was naturally involved quite a bit on offense with seven catches and 111 yards plus a trip to the end zone. Tailback Travis Etienne was relatively quiet on the ground with only 27 yards (two TD’s though) but figures to get plenty of work after emerging from the locker room.
The Tigers defense also played a big role in the halftime lead, holding NCSU to just 1-of-6 on third down as the decorated front four applied continuous pressure and already had two sacks. Perhaps the only thing that truly went awry through two quarters was when Dabo Swinney called for a fake field goal with his son Will as holder — but the younger Swinney fumbled the initial snap and, after picking the ball up off the turf, wound up fumbling again after being hit at the line of scrimmage.
Wolfpack QB Ryan Finley dealt with a ton of pressure on just about every dropback as he completed just seven passes for 58 yards and an interception. If there was a bit of a bright spot for the team, they did manage to run the ball better than they have this season with 43 yards on the ground but there’s not a whole lot else to write home about for a team that was untested but 5-0 coming into the game.
There have been some dramatic second half performances in this series over the years but from the looks of this one so far, that does not appear to be in the cards this time around. Perhaps NCSU can dial things up after regrouping at the break but the Tigers are really starting to live up to that ranking beside their name in the polls.
Tight end Tyler Sear is hopping on the Pennsylvania Turnpike and heading from one metropolitan corner of the state to the next. Sear announced on his Twitter account on Thursday he is transferring from Pitt to Temple.
The Class of 2017 recruit of the Panthers left the program last October for what was simply described as personal reasons. It was unknown if the leave of absence was a short-term or long-term plan as the decisions about the status were being kept close to the vest within the Pitt program.
Sear did battle some injury concerns during his time at Pitt that prevented him from potentially reaching his full potential for the Panthers. He caught two passes for nine yards last season prior to his stepping away from the team.
Perhaps a clean slate with a new program will do Sear good as he steps in to try contributing with the Owls in the AAC. Sear will have to sit out the 2019 season due to standard NCAA transfer rules, unless an exception is granted by the NCAA. It is unknown if a waiver will be filed by Sear and Temple for immediate eligibility.
Sear has not used a redshirt year yet so he could burn that in 2019 while waiting to get back on the field if he is forced to sit out the 2019 season. That ould leave Sear with two years of eligibility remaining beginning with the 2020 season.
Ass another name to the growing list of players entering the transfer portal. This time it is Michigan cornerback Myles Sims. According to a report from 247 Sports, the former four-star prospect in Michigan’s Class of 2018 is evaluating his options.
Any player who adds his name to the transfer portal is allowed to make contact with potential programs of interest, but it does not automatically mean that player is gone for god. Sims will have the option of pulling his name out of the portal in the event he decides to stay in Ann Arbor. How quickly Sims will make any decision one way or the other remains to be seen.
Sims did not see the field last season for Michigan so he can use the 2018 season as his redshirt year. That gives the former four-star recruit four years of eligibility remaining, although he will likely have to burn one year of eligibility by sitting out the upcoming 2019 season.
Standard NCAA transfer rules require a player to sit out a full season before being ruled eligible to play again, although exceptions have been made a bit more frequently over the past year. Whether or not Sims will have the chance to play right away this fall will have to wait to be determined when he decides what his plans will be moving forward.
The NCAA had some good news to give Purdue quarterback Elijah Sindelar recently. He’s getting a sixth year of eligibility, allowing him to play for two more seasons beginning this fall. According to a report from the Journal & Courier, Sindelar and Purdue received the good news from the NCAA offices on Wednesday.
“It made me feel really good to know I’ve got two more years, especially with guys like Rondale Moore and David Bell,” Sindelar told the Journal & Courier. “I love where the program is going and to be a part of it for another year will be phenomenal.”
The comfort of knowing Sindelar will be around for the next two full seasons should be a nice luxury for Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm, as having an experienced quarterback is always nice to have for a coach trying to build up a program the way Brohm is at Purdue. Of course, Sindelar could still be gone after this upcoming season, but knowing the extra year is an option helps.
Sindelar sat out the spring for the Boilermakers as he recovered from a knee injury suffered early in the spring. Sindelar has battled knee injuries during his time at Purdue, although that didn’t stop him from contributing to a bowl victory.
Sindelar is the frontrunner to be the starting quarterback at Purdue this season as the Boilermakers replace David Blough. Sindelar appeared in just two games last year due to his knee, but he played in 12 games for Purdue in 2017, completing 56.8 percent of his passes for 2,099 yards and 18 touchdowns with seven interceptions.
The roster overhaul at Texas Tech continues with the possible departure of quarterback Colt Garrett. In a message posted on his Twitter account Thursday afternoon, Garrett announced he has entered his name into the NCAA transfer portal.
“I will be exploring my options as a graduate transfer somewhere else and will be utilizing the transfer portal beginning today,” Garrett announced. Garrett confirmed he has two years of eligibility he plans to use at his next school.
As a graduate transfer, Garrett will be eligible to play right away this fall for the 2019 season no matter where he goes.
Garrett appeared in just two games for the Red Raiders during his time with the program. Both of those appearances came last fall, in which he attempted and completed just one pass for a 44-yard touchdown. Garrett, a Lubbock native, was a member of the Class of 2016 at Texas Tech with former head coach Kliff Kingsbury.