Yet, after that the Tigers only scored 3 more points in the first half, and 235 allowed on defense.
"That first drive on defense made me want to pull my hair out. We played nothing like we played in practice," said Swinney.
Sammy Watkins played today for the first time this season. He finished with 4 catches for 52 yards and a 58-yard touchdown rush. It was the first rushing touchdown of his career.
"I thought the run touchdown might pop," said Swinney. "He looked like he shot out of a cannon. We want to hand it to him, throw it to him, screen it to him, whatever to get him the ball."
On the overall play of the first half...
"The first half made me want to throw up. In the second half, we just executed a lot cleaner. The positioning and leverage was better.
"I don't know if this was the most disappointed I've been all season. The first time we lost the lead against Auburn I was very disappointed then. We can't give up chunk yards and have a good defense." - Brent Venables
That was not the number of plays we want to run at all. There's going to be days like that. We left a little bit out there. We lost our edge for two series in the first half. We challenged them in the second half. It was good to see them come back." - Chad Morris
"The second half was huge for us. They responded." - Swinney
"We started off slowly, but we picked it up in the second half." - Jaron Brown
On next week's game in Tallahassee...
"Really big game. We've got to be ready. Everyone is picking them to win the national championship. No one is rally giving us a chance. We'll rise to the challenge, watch film and get ready. They're a very talented team and very athletic." - Tajh Boyd
"Playing at 8:00 p.m. on the road in Tallahassee, it's going to be crazy. We have to execute within the system." - Dalton Freeman
"I wasn't moving as fast, there were first-game jitters. I'm pretty sure against Florida State I can move pretty quick." - Sammy Watkins
"We've got to make other teams earn it. We have a lot of work to do. I have great respect and value for the game, and when you're not on for whatever reason, you get exposed. We will break the score board next week if we don't play better and more consistent." - Venables
"This is a team that a lot of people have picked and are picking to be national champions. This will be our biggest challenge of the season so far. Season starts tomorrow." - Swinney
On the injury front...
"Tyler Shatley could have come back, so could have DeShawn Williams. We held Tig today, but he'll be fine. Gifford Timothy was ready to roll. We had other guys that we wanted to get playing time." - Swinney
(On three injured offensive linemen)... "We were't as aggressive. They've been back-ups for a reason. We hope they'll grade out well on film. I was hoping to get more out of the run game, to be honest with you. I don't want to make excuses." - Morris
"David Beasley will be 100 percent. I think Gifford will be fine." - Freeman
More from the head coach...
"Remember how bad Catanzaro was two years ago? Well, that's a lesson for everyone. It doesn't mean we didn't recruit well. It means freshmen get better. He's the most consistent kicker in Clemson history outside 40 yards."
"I want to thank our fans. I turn on good games on television and I see empty seats. Today against a 1-AA opponent we have a record for this type of game. I can't thank our fans enough."
"We have talent up front. They're young. Corey Crawford is the only one who got significant snaps last year. Branch and Bowers were just average players their sophomore years, and look how they ended their careers."
"You can only imagine what we (Xavier Brewer) talked about after that 2nd and 33. It was a poor play by a 5th year senior. I didn't decline the penalty because I wanted us to try again."