Roediger Sends Tigers Off with Bang

JACKSONVILLE - The Tigers practiced for the last time this year Tuesday afternoon.

All that's left now is a Wednesday walk-through and a quick press conference before Clemson takes to the field against Nebraska in the Konica Minolta Gator Bowl.

And nobody was happier than long snapper Charles Roediger ... sort of.

Roediger continued a weekly tradition Tuesday by sprinting towards midfield and cutting three backflips along the way after warm-ups as the Tigers geared up for their final practice of the 2008 season.

Usually he executes the maneuver during Thursday practices during game-week, but since Tuesday's session was similar to a normal Thursday, he did it again today.

"C.J. Gaddis used to to it back when I was a freshman," Roediger tells CUTigers.com. "At the time I was talking to Cole Chason and those guys and I was like, 'I could do that.' And they were like, 'no you can't!'

"So I went and practiced it and practiced it. And then it was before the Duke game a couple of years ago and they were telling me I needed to do it. And I didn't know if I should then they kept telling me to do it and I did, and everybody was like "Roady is doing it!' It was pretty funny."

Senior long-snapper Charles Roediger executing his backflip handspring before practice Tuesday morning.
The next logical question is how in the world is Clemson's long-snapper able to cut perfect back flip in front of the entire team?

Turns out, Roediger was actually a gymnast until he was in ninth grade.

"I didn't start playing other sports until then," he said. "Then I started playing basketball football and football.

"Like I said Gaddis used to do it [before practice] and then Tommy Sharpe would do the worm or something and would get everybody fired up. Marquan [Jones] can do it pretty good. Jamie Harper could do it pretty good too."

Even Dabo Swinney tried his hand at a backflip or two Tuesday afternoon- but with only limited success.

"He did a little cartwheel. It wasn't that good but it was good effort," Roediger said with a laugh.

"He ain't got nothing on me, boy," Swinney countered. "He usually caps our Thursday flexes off with a back hand-spring and Jamie Harper will do it too so I thought I'd mix it up a little bit today."

VIDEO BOWL IV: You've heard of the Super Bowl- the most watched game in the world. You've probably even heard of Bud Bowl, the meaningless contest played between Bud Light and Budweiser on the same day the Super Bowl is played.

But have you heard of Video Bowl?

If not, don't worry, you aren't alone. It's the annual slugfest which closes down the season for the Clemson video department, and it's typically played during bowl week before one of the practices begins.

Video Bowl IV took place before Sunday's practice, with two teams grinding their way to a 7-7 tie. (1 point is awarded for a touchdown in this annual grudge match.)

"We have two seniors who pick two teams," notes video bowl legend Chad Lampman, of Clemson video services. "This year the big star was Taylor Myers."

Stay tuned for additional updates from this year's video bowl, as more details continue to filter in.

NO MAJOR NEWS: There was no major news to come out of Tuesday's practice, which was almost an hour shorter than the other sessions held this week. The team went through unusual game-day situations like onside kicks and speciality plays.

After practice was over, the seniors were carried off the field by the rest of the team.

Cullen Harper could be seen being carried by Willy Korn, Kyle Parker and Michael Wade and James Davis took a piggy-back ride on C.J. Spiller.

But the most amusing scene had to be that of senior center Bobby Hutchinson barely making it off the practice turf- all 300-plus pounds of him.

"It's something we've always kind of done around here," said Swinney. "This was truly their last official practice. There were a lot of people trying to carry Bobby Hutchinson off. A lot of teriyaki chicken and filet migons on that boy.

"And it's very diversified weight."

The good news is, nobody was hurt.

QUICK HITS: In case you missed it, the bowl game is the only game all year in which the scout team wears the same color jersey as Clemson's opponent (red). ... James Davis, Cullen Harper and Mike Hamlin will play in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. later in January. ... Aaron Kelly is slated to play in the East-West All-Star game and Chris Clemons and Dorell Scott have been extended invitations to play in the Texas vs. The Nation All-Star game as well.

NEXT UP: The team will take a trip to the Jacksonville Zoo this afternoon before returning to the hotel. Tomorrow will feature a simple walk through in addition to a press conference with Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini and selected Cornhuskers players.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I've been recruiting C.J. [Spiller] for five years in case you haven't been keeping up. We've talked. And we'll talk when we get back to Clemson. But I think he'll be back. I really do. I think he'll be here. He beats to his own drum and I know he wants to graduate. We certainly want him to be here that's for sure. My gut is he'll be here but you never know." - Dabo Swinney on whether or not he's recruiting C.J. Spiller to come back to Clemson for his senior season.

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