Charlie Whitehurst completed a 4-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Youngblood in overtime Saturday to lead the Tigers to a 30-27 victory over the 25th ranked Virginia Cavaliers.
Virginia had the ball first in the extra period and settled for Connor Hughes' 33-yard field goal after the Tigers held on 3rd and one.
Clemson then took over in the extra session and drove right down the field, highlighted by Charlie Whitehurst's 12-yard pass to Duane Coleman on 3rd and 4. Two plays later, Whitehurst lofted a pass into the left corner of the endzone for the game winning touchdown.
"As soon as we got the play, my adrenaline went up as high as it could go," said Youngblood in the locker room. "That's something I've dreamed about forever, making the game-winning catch."
The play was eerily similar to the way Virginia beat Clemson two years in Death Valley. On that evening, Billy McMullen brought in a fade pattern over Brian Mance to give the Cavs the 26-24 upset.
"We had the same situation here two years ago," Virginia head coach Al Groh said.
"Two years ago, our guy went up and won the game. This year, their guy went up and won the game. That's all that counts. The kid made a good throw. The kid made a good catch. I think that's all Virginia needs to say about it. I congratulate them on winning."
The Tigers utilized Yusef Kelly early and often in the first half to help grind out a 10-0 halftime lead. Charlie Whitehurst connected with Derrick Hamilton for a 19-yard touchdown pass to provide the final margin heading into the locker room.
Virginia responded with a 17 3rd quarter points before the Tigers rallied for a 24-17 lead late in the 4th quarter.
The Cavs would force overtime on Alvin Pearman's 1-yard touchdown run with just over a minute left in the contest.
The win ended a streak of 8 consecutive games in which the Tigers had lost to ranked teams. In fact, the last time Clemson defeated a ranked team was also the Tigers' last overtime game, a 47-44 victory at #9 Georgia Tech in 2001.
Tigers Topple Virginia in OT
CUTigers.com Top Stories
From Gamecock to TigerDabo Swinney and Clemson add another tie to Alabama in their hire of DE Coach Marion Hobby's successor.
CUTigers.comSunday at 7:41 PM
Where Does Clemson Rank All-Time?Clemson captured its second consensus National Championship in 35 years by beating #3 Ohio State, the 2014 National Champion, 31-0 and undefeated #1 Alabama, the Defending National…
CUTigers.comFriday at 6:20 PM
PHOTO GALLERY I: NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP PARADEEnjoy these images from the Clemson National Championship Parade and Death Valley Celebration, courtesy of CUTigers.com Photographer John Bolton!
CUTigers.comWednesday at 5:56 PM
RECRUITING RADARIn our weekly Recruiting Radar, CUTigers Recruiting Analyst Gary McDaniel updates you on the latest news and intel on the Clemson recruiting front!
RECRUITING RADAR: National Champion EditionIn our weekly Recruiting Radar, CUTigers Recruiting Analyst Gary McDaniel updates you on the latest news and intel on the Clemson recruiting front!