This might be a bit of an obnoxious post but you gotta see some of the throws Clemson QB DJ Uiagalelei and his Wake Forest counterpart Sam Hartman made this afternoon in an epic ACC clash in Winston-Salem. Perpetual seed alert for both these guys, as Uiagalelei threw for 371 yards and five TDs, while Hartman had 337 through the air and six scores.
It felt like both defenses were just kinda playing man and not adjusting to the aerial assault the two strong-armed signal-callers were unleashing all Saturday. We'll start with Hartman's best highlights, since his performance may get lost in the shuffle amid defeat.
I can't emphasize enough how bad Uiagalelei looked last season. Based on how great he was in 2020 getting some spot duty while Trevor Lawrence recovered from COVID, it seemed like Uiagalelei was a shoo-in for the Heisman Trophy last year. Until he wasn't.
NOW, he's looking more like the guy everyone expected to see once Lawrence left town.
Hartman his a wide-open receiver for the first score of overtime, but the Demon Deacons' final possession fizzled as Hartman's final attempt went to the end zone and fell incomplete in double coverage.
Crazy to think about how far both these QBs have come. The Uiagalelei storyline is more about on-field adversity. In the case of Hartman, he was dealing with a blood clot issue and wasn't even able to suit up for the season opener. That he managed to recover, shake off the rust and put on this kind of performance in such a high-profile contest bodes well for Hartman's future as a potential NFL Draft prospect.
A victory by the 21st-ranked Demon Deacons over No. 5 Clemson really would've shaken up the College Football Playoff race. Oh well. Credit the Tigers for pulling through even as Hartman carved up their talented defense.