Game Day Notes: When will the Tigers be tested again in the fourth quarter?

In cruise control the past four games, Clemson hasn't played a critical fourth-quarter snap since Georgia Tech

DeAndre Hopkins runs for a touchdown after catching a ball in the second quarter against Georgia Tech

Photo by Mark Crammer

DeAndre Hopkins runs for a touchdown after catching a ball in the second quarter against Georgia Tech

When was the last time the Tigers played a critical fourth-quarter snap?

It's been a month of Saturdays, and then some.

On Oct. 6, it took a game-ending 17-0 run to put away Georgia Tech, 47-31, at Death Valley - after the Yellow Jackets had grabbed a 31-30 lead early in the fourth period.

Since then, the Tigers have spent the second half of four straight games on cruise-control.

They were in command of Virginia Tech, 31-10, going into the final quarter; they were up 35-7 on Wake Forest at the half, and 42-17 on Duke. And last week, Clemson jumped to a 28-0 lead against Maryland and was in control the rest of the way.

Noteworthy

- The Tigers are trying for their first back-to-back 10-win seasons since 1987-90, when Danny Ford and Ken Hatfield coached Clemson to four straight 10-2 seasons. That stretch included bowl victories over Penn State, Oklahoma, West Virginia and Illinois.

- Tajh Boyd is on pace to become just the second Clemson quarterback ever to finish in the top 10 in the nation in passing efficiency, joining Mike Eppley, who was third in 1983.

- If Clemson scores four touchdowns against N.C. State on Saturday, they'll break the school record of 58 that was set last year.

- Clemson's current 20.5 average winning margin ranks sixth best in school history, behind three teams coached by John Heisman, one coached by Frank Howard and one coached by John Patton (1898).

- Malliciah Goodman has seven career caused-fumbles - three short of the school record held by Jeff Davis and Ed McDaniel.

- Clemson has scored a school-record 163 points in the second quarter.

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