CLEMSON – Clemson president James Barker sent a letter to students and faculty Tuesday admonishing the behavior of some fans during Clemson’s victory over Virginia Tech on Saturday.
During a break in the game, a number of cadets were sworn into military service and a reference to the office of the U.S. President was booed during the oath.
The following are excerpts of Barker’s email:
“Saturday’s football game marked Clemson’s annual observance of Military Appreciation Day, a time when we pay tribute to veterans, men and women currently serving and those who gave their lives to protect us. Clemson has a strong military heritage, and this day is always a special occasion.
“Unfortunately, the day was marred by bad behavior from some fans. During the ceremony inducting ROTC cadets into the military, a number of fans booed during the section of the oath they take to obey the President of the United States.
“I understand that we are in the home stretch of a heated presidential election and that freedom of speech is a right which makes our country great. Regardless of one’s political leanings, however, this ceremony was a sacred moment to the recruits, their families, and many others in attendance. Many Clemson people have contacted me to express their sadness and disappointment at this public display of disrespect for the office of the President and the young people taking a solemn oath that day. I share those sentiments.”
Over the last five years, Clemson has played 17 night games at road and neutral venues and just three night games at home.
Clemson plays at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Wake Forest (ESPN).
Part of the issue is the Clemson administration does not want Thursday night games to be hosted on campus because of the disruption it causes the university school day and also the travel concerns associated with fans traveling across the state for a night game.
Clemson is 1-9 in Thursday night games as part of ESPN’s television package.
Tajh needs tuneup:
Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said quarterback Tajh Boyd’s issues Saturday were mechanically related. Boyd made a number of back-foot throws as he was unable or unwilling to step up in the pocket, which affected his accuracy.