On its face, criticism is fine.
By definition, it is the act of analyzing and judging the merits and flaws of a certain thing or person. It is neither bound to being pro or con. But, rather, intended to offer an unbiased account that provided insight.
Perhaps to the point of sparking some serious growth or evolution by the subject matter, say, if it were an individual or even a team.
So, here we are at the end of another college football season, with the ultimate proving ground all prim and proper for Monday night’s national title game and all we’re getting is the same old drivel with criticism of Clemson.
No insight. No nothing.
The Tigers haven’t played anybody. Their conference is weak. The calls went their way.
Should they be fortunate enough – or, apparently, luck enough – to get by what has been an other-worldly LSU this season to win a second straight crown and third in four years to cap a five-year run with four title-game appearances, you can’t even be bothered any more with guessing what knock will be featured. You just know it is coming.
It old, tired and lame at this point.
Get some new material, will ya, Critique Crew …
Like, the Tigers are cheating somehow. Stealing signals, or benefitting from special pills that no one else has, or that Dabo Swinney’s connection to the big fella upstairs is just dadgum, flat-out unfair.
Something. Anything. Just drop the same old drivel.
Clemson is aware of its schedule, of the conference it represents, even the calls that aided its effort against Ohio State in the teams’ national semifinal tilt two weeks ago in Arizona.
It’s also aware that perception, even in national rankings, isn’t always accurate. The Tigers’ schedule wasn’t that bad (not for nothing, but their win over OSU trumps any victory LSU posted this season … by a lot), the ACC isn’t that bad and to suggest they hadn’t played a big-time quarterback before the Buckeyes’ Justin Fields is laughable.
Jamie Newman not only starred at Wake Forest this season, but he will provide an upgrade for the departing Jake Fromm as a grad transfer next fall at Georgia. North Carolina freshman Sam Howell simply had a better season in his first year than Clemson’s own Trevor Lawrence did in his last season.
Despite all the regurgitated flaws it supposedly has, Clemson somehow has …
- the nation’s best linebacker in Butkus Award winner Isaiah Williams
- the nation’s best coaching staff
- the nation’s longest winning streak at 29 games
- the nation’s best program, having surpassed Alabama by beating the Tide twice for national titles in the last three years
None of the above is to say that Clemson is a sure bet to beat its fellow Tigers. Indeed, LSU is a championship-worthy opponent … and anything can happen in a one-game situation.
What it is saying, however, is to let go of the old-school silliness that refuses to accept change and recognize that Clemson has been elite – and, bonus, incredibly entertaining – the entire time you’ve been knocking it since showing the nerve to challenge, and beat, the likes of ’Bama, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Notre Dame when it mattered.
Maybe throw in a little pro with the con if that list of conquered includes this edition of LSU, too, after Monday night.