South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney has first-round NFL talent maybe even No. 1 pick talent all over him. But the NFL will have to wait a year on this sophomore and college players, well, they just have to endure his ferocity for one more season.
Clowney s prowess was on display for the nation Saturday against Michigan. Peeved by a bad spot on faked punt by Michigan that gave Michigan the ball, Clowney made the Wolverines pay.
Before running back Vincent Smith knew what hit him, Clowney was in his chest, hitting Smith so hard that his helmet flew 10 yards behind him. Of course Smith fumbled and of course, Clowney palmed the loose ball with his left hand while still on top of Smith, then got up and ran for a couple more yards.
On the next play, the Gamecocks were in the end zone with a terrific TD catch by receiver Ace Sanders to give South Carolina the 27-22 lead.
Clowney finished sixth in this year s Heisman Trophy voting and had arguably a better season than finalist Manti Te o, the Notre Dame senior linebacker. Clowney, barring any unforeseen developments, will be well-positioned to be a Heisman finalist next season when his collegiate career will almost surely end.