Skip to main content

Clemson's Leading Rushers Shipley, Pace Get Along Quite Well in Backfield

Clemson's running back duo Will Shipley and Kobe Pace combined for 489 rushing yards and six touchdowns in the final two regular-season games.

Last week, Clemson freshman Will Shipley said there was "jealousy" in the Tigers' running back room early in the season

With a lot of bodies, some older than others, there was a certain "hierarchy" that was expected, Clemson offensive coordinator Tony Elliott said, after Travis Etienne left, and it took some time for new running backs coach C.J. Spiller to get his room in order. 

But watching last Saturday's 30-0 victory over rival South Carolina, the No. 17 Tigers had about as healthy, both physically and emotionally, a running back position as it could be at this point in the season as they rushed for 265 yards. 

That's because Shipley and sophomore Kobe Pace have formed a complimentary, two-headed monster in the backfield. 

"Every drive, every time I come off the field he's giving me tips," Shipley said. "I'm telling him what I'm seeing when he's in. We just bounce off one another. It's a great relationship and it's getting better and better throughout the whole season." 


2023 QB John Mark Shaw

After Adversity Filled Junior Season, 2023 QB Still Hoping for Clemson Offer

All Clemson recently caught up with 2023 QB John Mark Shaw to get an update on his recruitment.


Coaching Staff, Culture Played Huge Role In Myles Oliver's Commitment to Clemson

The Tigers picked up a verbal pledge from 2022 CB Myles Oliver over the weekend and the versatile defender out of Georgia detailed his commitment with All Clemson.

Will Shipley

Clemson’s Running Game is Fine Shape

Not since the days of James Davis, C.J. Spiller and Reggie Merriweather has Clemson been so deep with talent at the running back position.

Shipley rushed for 128 yards and 6.7 per carry while Pace added 58 yards and 8.3 per rush. They each had two rushing touchdowns in a game that was never in doubt. What also wasn't questioned was the chemistry these two rushers, along with freshman Phil Mafah, share.

"I love Kobe. I love to see his success," Shipley said. "To put up eight yards a carry is huge. It makes it a lot easier on me to produce. It kind of takes some of the weight off. It's great." 

This duo has coexisted well since both got healthy and running backs Lyn-J Dixon and Michel Dukes transferred out of the program. Shipley leads the team with 678 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns in nine games. Through 10 contests, Pace is right behind him with 590 yards and six touchdowns. 

They combined for 489 yards and six touchdowns against South Carolina and Wake Forest. But last Saturday marked the first time this season that the Tigers showcased both of them in the backfield at the same time. 

The two-back look took South Carolina by surprise, and the Gamecocks struggled to adjust. 

"It was very successful," Shipley said. "It's hard to game plan for that. I think going forward we'll build off of that." 

Want to join in on the discussion? 100% FREE! Interact with fellow Tiger fans and hear directly from publisher Zach Lentz, deputy editor Brad Senkiw and recruiting analyst Jason Priester on any subject. Click here to become a member of the ALL CLEMSON message board community today!