Not to be outdone

Tajh Boyd

With A.J. McCarron and his girlfriend still fresh on the minds of many football crazy Americans, Tajh Boyd's bowl performance shouldn't be forgotten.

A full week before Alabama rolled up Notre Dame in the BCS National Championship, Clemson was in the spotlight. In an unopposed TV spot on New Year's Eve, Clemson/LSU was the only football on TV that night.

Against a defense full of future pros, Boyd put up numbers worthy of some sort of a bowl season MVP trophy, completing 36 of 50 passes for 346 yards with two touchdowns. He also rushed for 29 yards and a score.

Not a bad showing in what could be his finale as a Clemson Tiger. On Tuesday night, Boyd tweeted that he will announce by 2:30 Wednesday afternoon whether or not he will forgo his senior season and enter the NFL Draft.

If the Chick-fil-A Bowl turns out to be Boyd's final game, he certainly went out in style.

Channeling his inner Al Pacino, Boyd summed up the emotion that came with the 25-24 win over LSU.

"Football is about playing with passion, playing to win that inch, to win that battle, play after play after play," he told reporters after the game in the bowels of the Georgia Dome.

"When games are somewhat easy, it's not the most fun thing. It looks good, statistically; you get out of the game early.

"But you live for these moments, to grind and sweat it out, have tears with your teammates after. The fashion that we won the game, it's unbelievable."

Boyd certainly played a big part in making that happen.

"In a situation when the team needs you, you're going to step up," he said. "There are two things you can do. You can step up or back down. It's never been in my nature."

The ACC Player of the Year said that's the case for all of his teammates.

"In this type of offense, in this type of team, you lay everything out there on the line. I don't have a game tomorrow, next week, next month…I felt like everybody out there was laying it on the line," Boyd said.

Boyd's coordinator and position coach dished out a heavy portion of praise in his post-game press conference.

"Tajh Boyd had to play well tonight. That's something we talked about," Chad Morris said. "He's done about everything he can do at Clemson. He's broken about every record there is, every ACC record there is.

"But he hadn't won the big one. And tonight, I think that says a lot about him. Having him come back next year -- really pushing for that -- to come back, this team has set the standard to win a national championship. Then nucleus is there, the belief is there. We've got to go do it."

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