With an orange in one hand and the championship trophy in the other, Sammy Watkins celebrated one of the greatest victories in Clemson football history with his teammates. After losing the Orange Bowl by 37 points to West Virginia two years ago, the Clemson Tigers won their first BCS bowl in school history this year, the last year of the BCS, on January 3 as they defeated the Ohio State Buckeyes 40-35. Many Christ Church students were a part of the 72,080 fans in attendance at Sun Life Stadium in Miami.
“It was a great experience, a fun loving environment and a great win for the Tigers for sure.” said CCES junior Will Wynkoop, who was in attendance.
Dierks Bentley, a Grammy nominated American country music artist, was just one of the many great performers at halftime.
“He was awesome. He sang three songs and there were lots of fireworks.” Christ Church sophomore Meg Pieper said about Bentley’s performance.
Many Clemson fans also enjoyed staying after the game and celebrating the victory during the post game trophy presentation.
“Afterwards was fun because everyone was celebrating.” Taylor Pearman, a CCES 11 grader, said, “I sat behind the Clemson bench with my family… There was a good amount (of Clemson fans), but there was more Ohio State fans.”
Wide receiver Sammy Watkins led the Tigers and had 16 receptions for 227 yards and 2 touchdowns. This game was Watkins’s last game as a college athlete at Clemson University, as he has declared he will skip his senior season and enter the NFL draft in May this year.
“Chad Morris (Clemson’s Offensive Coordinator) did a great job executing the screen game (by) throwing it to Sammy Watkins, one of the best players on the field,” Wynkoop said, “16 catches for 200 and something yards, I mean that’s incredible especially for his last game. I know he will do big things in the pros.”
Clemson set many firsts during this great win: the first BCS bowl win in school history, the first team from South Carolina to win a BCS bowl and the first time in school history to have two consecutive eleven win seasons. Clemson fans are thrilled with this victory but now look to continue their success in the future without Tajh Boyd or Sammy Watkins.