The Honky Tonk Man Ready to Present the Music City Bowl Trophy
C.J. Spiller got more than the 8 touches he had in the 2006 Music City Bowl loss to Kentucky, that's all you need to know to figure out how this game went. He scores a TD every 12 touches. 17 touches into the game for Spiller it was the fourth quarter and Clemson was up only a single point on Kentucky. The law of averages caught up with Rich Brooks' defense on touch number 18: 8 yard TD run for Spiller (51st of his career). Rich Brooks' previous three Wildcat bowl squads had always hang around in bowl games and stole a victory. Down 21-13 after the Spiller score, it looked like they still had a chance to do their usual with about 10 minutes left in the game. After a well designed fake punt run on a fourth down to keep Kentucky's drive alive, Kentucky was faced with 4th down again just four plays later and a QB scramble came up about a half a yard short. Brooks had already burned all three timeouts. He didn't get the ball back even though there was about 5 and a half minutes left. Spiller's final three touches (all rushing attempts) of his college career went, 16, 8 and 15 yards respectively. Jamie Harper added three more rushes and Clemson took a knee to end the game. Kentucky had one TD first quarter (and the game) which ironically (Cameron Newton had all of 98 passing yards on 23 attempts) came on a pass. Kentucky's kicker went 2/2 on FGs. Neither kicker missed an XP, yet this years' kicking craziness continued. Clemson's Richard Jackson lined up a 44 yard FG, struck it well, then the wind gusted and stopped the ball in its tracks and it fell short of the goalposts.
C.J. Spiller had 172 all-purpose yards in the game to sneak past Deangelo Williams into second place on the FBS record list. A do-it-all guy you have never heard of named Brandon West from Western Michigan is number one. West didn't get any fanfare playing for the Broncos but he has legitimate talent so don't lose it if your favorite NFL team drafts him next Spring.
With Kentucky's loss, I dropped to 2-4 picking bowl games. Mr. Lincoln improved to 2-0.
Bowl Entertainment Factor: I'm sleepy. You say the game's over already? Oh, good. I'm also about 60% sure that Rich Brooks is hovering around 40% certainty about coming back next year.