August 30, 2003, Clemson, South Carolina
Clemson was opening the 2003 football season by hosting Georgia for a noon game. The previous year, Clemson took UGA down to the wire in Athens, and expectations were high.
The first football game is always the most exciting. We were pumped as we headed from Waterloo to the Promised Land. Everything was going just as planned until we hit Anderson. At that point, 20,000 Clemson fans met 20,000 UGA fans.
Traffic stopped. Temperatures were high. Tempers were higher.
We finally made our parking space 15 minutes before kickoff. We literally ran from the car to the stadium. We were then stuck in the concourse waiting to get to our seat. It’s hot. It’s sticky. It’s smelly.
We finally make our seats just as the Tigers are coming down the hill. They were pumped. We were pumped. The crowd was pumped.
All 80,000+ fans were jumping up and down. It was downright sweltering in there.
But we didn’t care. Football was back and we were playing the silver britches.
Then the second most beautiful play-action pass I’ve ever seen occurred (see Chris Weinke vs Clemson). David Green faked, Justin Miller bit, Fred Gibson scored.
UGA 7 – Clemson 0
Unfortunately, the temperatures continued to climb. So did Georgia’s side of the scoreboard.
The afternoon sun never relented. Neither did Georgia’s defense.
Final score: UGA 30 – Clemson 0
At the end of the day, we were sweat soaked and sun burnt. And humiliated.
That day will not set any temperature records as there were many days as hot or even hotter, but to me, that was the most miserable football game I’ve ever been to. Add in the traffic before the game, the shut out, and the fact that’s it at home to your rival, and it all points to the hottest I’ve ever been.