The Best I Ever Saw

I’ve been to a few sporting events.  Not a ton, but enough to have seen some pretty amazing things.  After reading Mickey Plyer’s Tigernet.com blog about the best single performance he’s ever witnessed, I thought I would do the same…

Some of the things I’m thinking of may not be considered amazing feats, but to me, on that day, I was impressed…

So, in no particular order here are what I consider to be the three best performances I’ve ever witnessed…

One caveat is that I had to be in the stands for the game. TV does not count…

Honorable Mention:

  • CJ Spiller, Clemson – vs Georgia Tech, ACC Championship game, 2009
  • Julius Peppers, UNC – vs Clemson, October 2001
  • Rod Gardner, Clemson – vs USC, November 2000
  • Greg Buckner, Clemson – vs UNC, January 1998
  • Antwan Edwards, Clemson – vs USC, November 1997

#3 – Bobby Bowden, FSU – vs Clemson, September 1988 – Puntrooskie Call

The year was 1988 and I was a strong 9-1/2 years old.  I bled orange and white – still do today, but I mean at nearly 10 years old, everything revolved around the Tigers (man, maybe I haven’t really grown up)…  The score is tied and Clemson is about to get the ball back, in great field position, with possibly the best kicker in the country.  They are going to win this game…

Then Bobby Bowden happens.  Old man calls for the Puntrooskie and no one saw it coming, certainly not the 80,000 folks wearing orange.  And certainly not the almost 10 year old in the stands…

I grew up a lot that day.  I realized to be a Clemson man, you need an endless supply of heart, because they are going to always require some of it…

#2 – Deion Sanders, San Francisco – vs Atlanta, October 16, 1994 – Prime Time’s return to Atlanta

I saw Deion when he was at Florida State.  He was good then.  He was a freakin’ man in 1994.  He came to Atlanta with an attitude I had never seen before.  He came out swinging – literally, as he and Andre Rison scuffled a bit.  And then he backed it up.  Intercepted a pass and returned it 90+ yards for a TD.  That was one of the few times, in person or on TV, where someone said I am going to do it then made everyone else look like a toddler while he did it…

Full disclosure – I grew up a 49ers fan with a disdain for the Falcons.  I wasn’t sad to see it happen…

#1 – Woodrow Dantzler, Clemson – vs Georgia Tech, September 2001

Mickey went with Woodrow’s performance in Raleigh – the 600+ yard performance.  That was good, but to me, at Georgia Tech, against a Top 10 team, this one was better…

Clemson was down by 2 scores just before the half.  Until Woodrow decided to scamper over half the field for a TD.  Later in the game, Woodrow has the ball with Clemson down 4 and absolutely no momentum after the defense gave up two scores.  Doesn’t matter.  Woodrow finds McKelvey for a TD.  The small Clemson contingent is going nuts…

Of course the Clemson defense decided to give up a field goal.  All that did was allow Dantzler one more chance to be magical.  He scored on a QB draw to win the game…

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