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MIAMI, FL (WIS) -
As the oranges flew from the players behind him, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney couldn't resist getting in a slight dig at in-state rival South Carolina after his Tigers defeated the Ohio State Buckeyes at the Orange Bowl in Miami.
"Two years ago, we got our butts kicked on this field," said Swinney. "And it has been a journey to get back. We're 22-4 since that night. And we are the first team from the state of South Carolina to ever win a BCS game!"
And it was a convincing win, too. Senior quarterback Tajh Boyd and junior wide receiver Sammy Watkins were a nightmare matchup for the Buckeyes.
Boyd connected to Watkins for two touchdowns and 227 yards in an MVP performance from the receiver that also broke an Orange Bowl record for receiving yards.
Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer said Watkins' vertical speed created a big enough cushion during Clemson's bubble screens to give his defense fits.
"Obviously, we didn't do a good job, but I don't want to take anything away," said Meyer. "I don't know all the receivers in the country, but I can't imagine any better than that guy."
Boyd also put up some gaudy stats of his own during the victory, going 31 of 40 for 378 yards and five touchdowns and 127 yards rushing.
If the stats don't paint a pretty picture of Ohio State's defense, then allow coach Meyer to be blunt with you.
"We're not a championship-caliber defense right now," said Meyer. "Although we think about the last two games, we were in position to go win that game."