Sources: Clemson was Ready to Play, Met ACC Protocols at FSU

Brad Senkiw

As if 2020 couldn't get weird enough, the postponement of No. 4 Clemson's road game against Florida State happened Saturday morning, just hours before kickoff.

According to multiple sources, FSU is the program that didn't want to play the game and the Tigers found out after many things were in place. The team had already had breakfast and its final position meetings. They were ready to depart for the hotel, and Clemson had set up all its equipment on the sideline. 

The sources say that Clemson followed all proper ACC protocols concerning COVID-19, but according to several reports, FSU disputed that. 

Rece Davis reported on ESPN's "College GameDay" that the Tigers have a lineman who had symptoms all week, practiced with the team and then the player tested positive after arriving in Tallahassee. 

But Clemson is adamant that all guidelines were met on their end, leaving questions as to why this game wasn't played on FSU. The Seminoles' roster is far from on solid ground. Injuries and opt-outs have ravaged this program, which is 2-6 in head coach Mike Norvell's first season in Tallahassee. 

FSU is down to two scholarship quarterbacks: Jordan Travis and Tate Rodemaker. Travis has been banged up and missed last week's game against N.C. State. It was expected that Rodemaker, a freshman, would start after fellow freshman Chubba Purdy had surgery this past week. James Blackmon announced earlier this month he was transferring out of the program. 

The Seminoles are also without several key starters, like defensive tackle Marvin Wilson and receiver Tamarrion Terry, so there is plenty of reason to think FSU didn't want to play the game. 

It is wild to think that would keep the game from actually taking place. Clemson was a 35-point favorite. If the two teams end up making this game up on Dec. 12, the Tigers would again be a massive favorite. FSU isn't playing for a bowl game, even though all teams are eligible for the postseason this year, and its 2020 campaign is already a lost one. 

So why would they not want to play this game and get it over with? Are the Seminoles hoping it's never played? There is very little chance they would win the game regardless of when. 

Clemson's players took to social media to share their disgust for the decision, giving more credence to this falling on FSU. 

Again, Clemson feels like it met all of the ACC's standards to play the game. How this gets disputed just hours from kickoff is hard to understand and just opens up the idea that FSU didn't want to play the game for other reasons. 

If that's the case, this is terrible for college football. Sure, opt-outs occur all the time and players don't want to put themselves at risk. That's completely understandable, but if the other team is comfortable with how it's handled everything leading up to the game and you aren't, it's simply not right. More information needs to be given for this action.

Florida State should at least give more of a public explanation for calling this game off or some will call it what it looks like: quitting. 

Comments (11)
No. 1-3
Mike102
Mike102

A Clemson player had symptoms all week and practiced with the team. If that's not a violation of protocol, I don't know what would be. Selfish and stupid!

6 Replies

Layup2
Layup2

Let me guess...Biden supporter and Fla. ST fan??

helpfixstupid
helpfixstupid

he has symptoms but also has two negative test results... check out Elon Musk's twitter - he has two positives then two negatives within same day, same nurse, same testing equipment

cmb50153
cmb50153

I won't accept that any coach for Clemson would sacrifice their players or the other team's for covid infection. FSU has nothing to lose but Clemson still has more games to go and players who have future hopes. It would certainly not be to their benefit for future endeavors. FSU seems to have coped out because of injuries and score predictions. That was a very selfish, unprofessional, costly move in more ways than one.

Mike102
Mike102

Neither.

Csmith4433
Csmith4433

That player twice tested negative for covid. Protocol was clearly followed

Csmith4433
Csmith4433

Agree and it’s not even the coaches - it’s the medical staff and there’s no question that their only concern is the health of Clemson athletes as well as the other teams athletes. The conference should have already addressed this issue in their protocol and if not they should have stepped in. Ridiculous to leave it open to where there could even be a disagreement

Farmer1197
Farmer1197

No it’s not a violation of protocol Clemson is in the rite FSU IS A BUNCH OF PANSIES

Lovemyteam
Lovemyteam

Clemson grad here, ‘71. If Clemson had a player who tested Positive on Friday, showed symptoms all week, AND had practiced all week with the team, the decision to postpone is the logical, reasonable, adult thing to do. I love my team, but right is right. I’m a nurse. No lectures, please.


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