Palmer playing the waiting game

CLEMSON - Tight ends continue to see larger roles in the passing game as Clemson's offense looks to keep the points coming this Saturday versus Coastal Carolina.

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CUTigersTV: Michael Palmer



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A shoeless Michael Palmer sprinted from the Clemson locker room Saturday to celebrate their 40-37 overtime win at Miami.

Memory of the fourth quarter, helmet to helmet hit that left him concussed is a little fuzzy, but he remembers everything else. While in the locker room with Dr. Len Reeves, Palmer was able to see the game's conclusion on TV.

"I saw Coach (Dabo) Swinney give the signal. I said, ‘Come on, Jacoby, you've got to make this play.' Sure enough he caught it and scored the touchdown," he said. "I gave Dr. Reeves a hug and I took off. He was chasing after me, yelling at me."

Palmer said a stunned Durrell Berry looked at him with a face that asked, ‘What are you doing out here?'

"I might not have known completely what was going on. I didn't want to miss that moment with my teammates. That's something that I'll never forget," Palmer said.

By the time he checked his phone after the game, some 65 text messages awaited, ranging from concern and well-wishing to others that questioned his manhood. He didn't see--or really know--what the fuss was all about until the next day.

"I didn't actually see (the hit) until Sunday when I watched the film, and I saw the TV copy," Palmer said. "It looked pretty bad, there's no doubt about it.

"It was a pretty nasty hit."

Though the play was originally ruled a fumble, replays showed that Palmer made the catch, as he finished with five for 74 yards and a touchdown.

He woke up Sunday feeling really well, but not so much on Monday and Tuesday.

After practice on Wednesday, Coach Dabo Swinney said Palmer probably won't play on Saturday against Coastal Carolina as a result of concussion at Clemson--the second of his career. The first was came his sophomore year against South Carolina.

Palmer wasn't ready to concede not playing earlier this week, but admitted the picture is a bigger than this weekend.

"Not that we're taking Coastal Carolina lightly," he said. "I'm trying to do the smartest thing, even though I might not want to do it."

The team's second leading pass catcher, Palmer has 21 receptions for 246 yards and two touchdowns. He's the school's first tight end to have over 20 catches in a season since K.D. Dunn had 22 in 1984.

Dwayne Allen will fill Palmer's role, and should do so with some success. Allen continues to make strides in his red-shirt freshman year. He has seven catches for 63 yards and a touchdown.

Allen had his most productive day this season on Saturday and finished with four catches for 36 yards.

The straight-shooting Allen was comfortable admitting he was in the wrong on the interception in the Miami end zone.

"It was a poorly run route on my part," he said. "I put Kyle in position where he couldn't see things. I should have done a better job."

An expanded role in the passing game left Allen feeling a little more sore on Monday.

"I feel like I actually played a game…it feels great being able to contribute in a win, especially a win like this," he said.

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