Younger Freeman opted for orange

CLEMSON - Dalton Freeman always wanted to be just like his dad.

Ben Freeman, who coached his son at Pelion High School, played center on the Wake Forest football team.

And the Demon Deacons were one of the first offers for the younger Freeman, who was rated as a four-star offensive guard in 2008, according to

"He took me up there a few times when I was getting recruited," he said. "We visited the campus, and I like it a lot, but I really felt like Clemson was the place for me."

Dad never put too much pressure on son to choose the same path he did.

"He was very open. He let me make my own decision," Freeman said. "He's the biggest Clemson Tiger fan there is now."

This weekend, father and son will be in Winston-Salem, N.C. this weekend, where Clemson will attempt to become bowl eligible.

Despite the 5-5 record with two games left on the schedule, Freeman believes there's still a strong sense of urgency in the locker room.

"I think everybody's more fired up, simply because we haven't won," he said. "When you're winning, you create a lot of momentum, you're used to it."

Momentum was in Clemson's favor heading into last Saturday's trip to Tallahassee.

The Tigers had won three of their last four games and the push for the ACC Atlantic Division title was still on.

But it all came to a crashing halt when Dustin Hopkins banged in a 55-yard field goal as time expired.

Clemson lost another close one on the road as any sliver of hope for the ACC Championship was lost.

"It's painful," Freeman said. "The guys hate it. It's just the worst feeling in the world."

The locker room hurt, almost as bad as any other he'd seen.

"It's something you never want to experience as a player," Freeman said. "If you're going to compete and you're going to play at this level, you're going to have situations like that.

"It's learning how to deal with that, suck it up and move on to the next one."

That push started bright and early at 6:30 Monday morning.

"We're going to do everything we can to be back up," he said. Top Stories