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Clemson 52, The Citadel 6

The SportsXchange

CLEMSON, S.C. -- Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd bowed out in style in the final home game of his career Saturday, passing for 288 yards and five touchdowns to lead the Tigers to a 52-6 romp over The Citadel Bulldogs.

Boyd completed touchdown passes to five different receivers in the first half as Clemson bolted to a 42-0 lead and coasted from there.

Boyd left the game to a thunderous ovation from Clemson fans during a timeout with 1:39 left in the third quarter. The senior completed 21 of 28 passes and pushed his career passing touchdown total to 102, becoming the 18th quarterback in FBS history to surpass the century mark.

In a fitting tribute on Clemson's Military Appreciation Day at Memorial Stadium, receiver Daniel Rodriguez scored his first career touchdown on a 2-yard shovel pass with 14:10 remaining in the game. Rodriguez, a redshirt sophomore, is a Purple Heart recipient who fought for the United States in Afghanistan.

Clemson, ranked seventh in the latest BCS standings, improved to 10-1 with one game remaining -- a Nov. 30 date at arch-rival South Carolina.

The Citadel, an FCS member that has lost 16 in a row against Clemson, finished its season 5-7. The Citadel slipped to 0-28 all-time against Atlantic Coast Conference foes.

Clemson, meanwhile, showed that it has caught on to defending the triple-option offense. The Tigers, who held Georgia Tech to nearly 70 yards below their average in their most recent game on Nov. 14, throttled The Citadel's option attack as well, limiting the Bulldogs to 176 yards rushing on 76 attempts -- an average of just 3.1 yards per rush.

The Bulldogs also managed to complete just 1 of 4 passing attempts for a total of minus-4 yards.

Quarterback Ben Dupree led The Citadel with 69 yards rushing on 23 carries, but the Bulldogs could muster no consistency in front of a Memorial Stadium crowd of 81,554.

The Bulldogs were just 4 of 17 on third-down conversions and had 172 total yards. Their only offense came from a pair of Thomas Warren field goals in the second half.

Clemson, meanwhile, used a variety of weapons to post the third consecutive 50-point game -- a first in school history.

Senior running back Roderick McDowell had 108 yards on 21 carries and scored on a 9-yard touchdown reception. Stanton Seckinger, Mike Williams, Sammy Watkins and Martavis Bryant also added scoring catches while Chandler Catanzaro had two field goals, pushing his school-record point total to 395.

NOTES: Clemson junior WR Sammy Watkins had seven catches for 58 yards, becoming the Tigers' all-time leader in receiving yards in the process with 3,071. He topped the record held by former teammate DeAndre Hopkins, now of the Houston Texans. ... Clemson leads the nation in tackles for loss and did nothing to hurt its standing on Saturday, recording 10 tackles for lost yardage. ... The Citadel QB Ben Dupree had 69 yards rushing to push his career total to 2,679, the sixth-best in school history and the second-most by a quarterback. ... The Citadel coach Kevin Higgins was denied his 100th career win. He is now 99-82-1 overall.
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