There was a reason why the fans had confidence and hope for this season. It seemed like the two main reasons the offense had struggled so mightily the last two seasons had been corrected. The team was installing a new offense with Garrett Riley, and Cade Klubnik was taking over at quarterback.
Some people called Riley’s system air raid. Riley and Swinney preferred the term dirt raid. The problem is that the offense on Monday night had no “raid” about it at all.
Aside from a few two-back formations that put Shipley and Mafah on the field at the same time, there didn’t seem to be much difference in the offense at all.
It isn’t unusual for a team to need a few games to get a new offense completely installed and for everyone to feel comfortable running it, and we do need to be patient with this side of the ball. I have to stress that had Clemson maximized their opportunities with two successful field goals and two touchdowns scored inside the five-yard line, this would have been a completely different game.
It was the mistakes and turnovers that doomed Clemson Monday night, but until Clemson demonstrates that they have turned the page and are embracing a new philosophy of how to play offense, there will be a lack of hope with fans for any significant improvement moving forward.