Clemson - Miami Notebook

MIAMI – During Clemson coach Tommy Bowden's weekly press conference on Tuesday, he stated that his kickers were going to kick away from Miami superstar Devin Hester Saturday night.

In fact, he said that if Hester got any returns that it would be a complete and total mistake.

Well, if that were indeed the case, then there were a few mistakes committed by the Tigers as Hester got his chance to return a couple of kicks. But it turned out not to be all that bad after all.

Hester, who is considered by many to be the best return specialist in the country, took the game's first punt and returned it a scant three yards. He got another opportunity later on and only got five yards on the punt return.

Maybe Miami should have adopted Clemson's philosophy by kicking away from return me.

The Tigers' Justin Miller, who is also considered one of the best returners in the country, tallied 35 yards in punt returns and 28 yards in kickoff returns.

Once again, Clemson's special teams did everything asked of them, with the exception of field goal kicking.

With the Tigers on the cusp of qualifying for their sixth straight bowl, two members of the Tangerine Bowl were in attendance at the Orange Bowl to watch them.

Also sitting in the press box were scouts from the Miami Dolphins, Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals.

Clemson played a good portion of the game in a consistent rain, which is something rather new to the Tigers.

The last time Clemson played in the rain was against Georgia Tech on 9-14-02. The Tigers also won that game, 24-19.

When Miami scored on its first drive of the game, it was first time all season a team had done that to Clemson. Also, the 10 first quarter points by the Hurricanes were the most given up Clemson in the opening quarter all year.

The Tigers wore white shirts and white pants for the first time since they wore them at N.C. State last year. … Charlie Whitehurst's interception in the first half was his first in 87 attempts. … Reggie Merrieweather gained more than 100 yards (114) for the first time in his career. It was also the team's first 100-yard rusher this year. … Jad Dean, who made a career long 48-yard field goal in the first half but later missed three other attempts, made the game tying extra point missing a contact lens. Top Stories