Posts

MY CLEMSON: Eric Mac Lain ’15

 

during the Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game in Charlotte, N.C., Dec. 6, 2015. (Photo by Jason E. Miczek, theACC.com)

Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game in Charlotte, N.C., Dec. 6, 2015. (Photo by Jason E. Miczek, theACC.com)

My name is Eric Mac Lain, and this past December, I became a Clemson alumnus. It was a day I thought would never come, but now that I am reflecting on it, I realize it happened in what seemed to be a blink of an eye.

My experiences at Clemson were second to none. I was very fortunate to have been a team captain during our special 2015 football season (14-1), losing only to Alabama in the National Championship. I graduated with a B.S. in health science and was able to start my master’s program in athletic leadership. This past fall, I had the honor of introducing Vice President Joe Biden when he spoke at Clemson.

More important than all of that, I found my future wife at Clemson. We met freshman year because she and my roommate were family friends, and I tagged along to a cookout. We became good friends and started dating two years later. So the phrase Clemson family is very real to me! Her father and other relatives went to Clemson, and both of our brothers now attend Clemson. It is safe to say that orange will run in our bloodlines for many years to come.

There is something special about Clemson that’s not true about every other University. As soon as we aren’t at Clemson or at least nearby, we miss it. I can attest to this because I have been away this spring training for the NFL, and cannot wait to be back in Tiger town.

I’m Eric Mac Lain and this is MY Clemson. CU soon!

You probably saw Eric Mac Lain during the coverage of the Orange Bowl and the National Championship as he was being interviewed by what seemed like every reporter in the country. Click on the photos below to see more about Eric’s life at Clemson.

Grand Canyon: Austin Luttrell (senior), Ellie Patterson ’14, Emsley Lewis ’14, Jacob Cook (senior) and Dylan Caulder ’14

After such an incredible football season, we knew we had to make the journey out to Phoenix to see our Tigers play for the National Championship. We couldn’t pass up the drive to the awe-inspiring Grand Canyon during our time there. The view speaks for itself and singing the Cadence Count with surrounding Clemson fans while overlooking the Canyon is a memory we are all sure to never forget.

Pictured from left to right: Austin Luttrell (current senior), Ellie Patterson (Class of 2014), Emsley Lewis (Class of 2014), Jacob Cook (current senior) and Dylan Caulder (Class of 2014).

Clemson fans turn Orlando orange for Russell Athletic Bowl

Thousands of Clemson fans came from near and far to cheer the Tigers on at the Russell Athletic Bowl in January. The Alumni Association, IPTAY and the Orlando Clemson Club sponsored a variety of events to welcome the faithful to Orlando.

The night before the game, more than 300 fans invaded Miller’s Ale House for an event sponsored by the Orlando Club. Participants enjoyed live music and a silent auction that raised money for scholarships. Fans also enjoyed a “Pre-Tailgate Tailgate” on game day, sponsored by the club.

The Orlando Club and the Alumni Association found time for some good deeds as well, as they co-hosted a volunteer event during the bowl festivities. Alumni from the local area as well as Tigers traveling from out of town gathered at Clean the World on Sunday to sort donated hygiene products and prepare them for recycling. Clean the World collects and recycles hygiene products discarded by the hospitality industry and distributes them to impoverished people locally and around the world.

FanFest at Russell Athletic Bowl was the site for a ONE Clemson Tailgate before the game, sponsored by IPTAY and the Alumni Association. A live deejay provided entertainment, and President Clements and his family welcomed everyone to Orlando. Fans were able to also enjoy the activities and games put on by FanFest, then walk across the street to cheer on the Tigers.

Those staying at the team hotel got an unexpected treat when they welcomed the team back in a spontaneous “Tiger Walk” in the halls of the hotel. Players walked through a tunnel of fans, punctuated with Cadence Counts and high fives.

Come Home to Clemson: Download Esso Club Wallpaper

Fall has arrived in Clemson. A hint of color is beginning to show in the trees, evening temperatures are cooling off (just ever so slightly) and the First Friday Parade has come and gone. And no matter how much things have changed, it still feels like home.

So, as you’re making plans for this fall, take time to return to Clemson.

Until then, download a custom Esso Club wallpaper for your iPhone, iPad or desktop, or add a Facebook cover photo. To download, just right click on the option below, and save the image to your device.

Then take a few minutes and read about “Coming Home to Clemson” from the most recent issue of Clemson World.

Facebook cover photo

Coming Home to Clemson

Fall has arrived in Clemson. A hint of color is beginning to show in the trees, evening temperatures are cooling off (just ever so slightly) and the First Friday Parade has come and gone. Every Friday, but more so on game weekends, traffic picks up as alumni returning to campus cruise down College Avenue with tops down and windows open.

Conversations on the street vary, but at least once in every block, you hear snippets that reference the Study Hall or Capri’s, Chanello’s or the Fashion Shack. Judge Keller’s and Mr. Knickerbocker and the Athletic Department have customers 2-3 deep replacing worn-out t-shirts and sweatshirts, and selecting baby-sized Tiger apparel for new members of the family. Stocking up on items (orange items, that is) that you don’t find just anywhere.

Like everywhere, Clemson has changed over the years, both the campus and the town. With growth in enrollment has come growth on campus — new residence halls, classroom buildings and athletic facilities. In town, restaurants and bars have changed names and menus, and more neighborhoods and apartments are built every year. But if you spend some time here, re-trace your favorite path through campus and stroll down College Avenue and onto side streets, we’re betting you’ll still find a lot of those places that will spark memories and stories your kids have never heard.

So, as you’re making plans for this fall, take time to return to Clemson.

It still feels like home.

10 THINGS NOT TO MISS ON CAMPUS

ICE CREAM IN THE ’55 EXCHANGE: Yes, it’s real Clemson ice cream, even if it’s not sold out of Newman Hall. A double scoop of peach ice cream will still have you drooling before you get your spoon in it. You can get real Clemson blue cheese at the same spot. If you have a yen to see where it all began, you can make it to Stumphouse Tunnel in less than an hour. While you’re there, don’t miss the opportunity to hike down Issaqueena Falls.

CARILLON GARDEN: Nestled between Sikes and Tillman halls and overlooking the library, Carillon Garden was given to the University by the Class of ’43 and is dedicated as a lasting tribute to the entire class, particularly to those who lost their lives during World War II.

MEMORIAL PARK AND SCROLL OF HONOR: Across from Memorial Stadium, Memorial Park pays tribute to alumni who have served the state and nation in fields ranging from agriculture to the military. The Scroll of Honor is maintained by the Clemson Corps and honors alumni who gave their lives in service to country.

FOOTBALL PRACTICE FACILITY: Dedicated in 2013, this 80,000-square-foot facility adjacent to the football practice fields and indoor track facility includes a full-sized synthetic turf football field.

LIFE SCIENCES BUILDING: Facing Cherry Road, just adjacent to the P&A building, this facility houses researchers in microbiology, biochemistry, food safety and genetics who are collaborating to solve the world’s problems.

HOWARD’S ROCK: Not quite as large as it was originally, the rock now has video surveillance to make sure it doesn’t fall victim to vandals again. Originally from Death Valley, Calif., the rock was first placed on a pedestal at the top of the hill in 1966. Players rub it for luck as they run down the hill before each home game.

PRESIDENT’S PARK: Located in front of the President’s Home and extending through the Azalea Gardens to Sikes Hall, this is one of the most beautiful places on campus. Housed in the park is the President’s Park Rotunda. In conjunction with the Class of 1957, the rotunda was built to portray Clemson’s historical responsibilities of teaching, research and public service.

BOWMAN FIELD: Bring your Frisbee, your football, your blanket or just your best relaxed self. Spend some time on Bowman Field and relive your days on Clemson’s green beach.

WALK DOWN HWY 93 PAST HISTORIC RIGGS FIELD: You can now do that without fearing for your life, thanks to a newly constructed pedestrian walkway.

FORT HILL: Learn a little history while you’re here, and tour Fort Hill, the home of John C. Calhoun and later of his son-in-law, University founder Thomas Green Clemson and his wife Anna Maria. A registered National Historic Landmark, it’s located in the center of campus. Open Mon.–Sat., 10 a.m.–noon and 1–4:30 p.m., Sun, 2-4:30 p.m.

WHAT’S STILL HERE

Sure, things have changed here — but not everything. Regardless of when you graduated from Clemson, you’ll find an old favorite haunt still open, if updated. Here’s just a sampling:

JUDGE KELLER’S (1899): It’s been in its current location since 1936, and about the only things that have changed are the faces behind the register and the style of the t-shirts.

ESSO CLUB (1933): A service station at its beginning, this was the only place in Clemson where you could sit down and have a beer between 1956–1958. Legend has it that the bar top is made of old stadium seats from Death Valley. In 1997, Sports Illustrated named it one of the top sports bars in the country.

MAC’S DRIVE-IN (1965): Built by the late Mac McKeown ’56, Mac’s is still serving burgers and fries on Pendleton Road. Make sure you ask for a milkshake while you’re there.

M.H. FRANK (1970): Billing themselves as “Updated Traditional Men’s Clothiers,” the folks at M.H. Frank have been making sure Clemson men are ready for every occasion for more than 40 years.

PIXIE & BILL’S (1971): Offering steak, prime rib and seafood, it’s been called “Clemson’s original fine dining establishment.” Co-eds used to say that a trip to Pixie and Bill’s (or its sister restaurant Calhoun Corners) was a sign that a relationship was getting serious.

MR. KNICKERBOCKER (1973): Opened as a men’s clothier in 1973, the store shifted to carry fraternity and sorority apparel as well as Clemson merchandise and hand-sewn jerseys.

TIGER SPORTS SHOP (1974): Opened by legendary soccer coach I.M. Ibrahim, the store grew from selling shoes to offering a wide range of Clemson apparel and memorabilia.

ALLEN’S CREATIONS (1976): Begun in Trent Allen’s basement, it’s been in the current location since 1988, providing art prints and framing for all things Clemson.

TIGER TOWN TAVERN (1977): It’s expanded since it opened in the 1970s to include outside seating and a second-floor private club, but you can still play a game of pool while you catch up with friends.

NICK’S (1976): Opened by Nick Vatakis and Milton Antonakos on the site of what used to be Pat Belew’s Gold Nugget, Nick’s is now owned/managed by Esther Revis-Wagner and her husband Ken, a retired biology
professor.

COLUMBOS’ (1984): Tucked behind the National Guard Armory on Pendleton Road, Columbo’s has been serving Chicago-style pizza and calzones since the early 1980s.

TDS (1988): Offering daily specials plus a “meat and three” for lunch, TDs also is the spot for occasional live music on the weekends.

TIGERTOWN GRAPHICS (1988): There’s a good chance your student group got their shirts designed and printed here.

VARIETY & FRAME (1992): Specializing in custom-designed diploma frames, Variety & Frame also offers a wide range of Clemson memorabilia and art supplies.

POT BELLY DELI (1994): Tucked behind the Rite Aid on Wall Street, Pot Belly almost always has a line of students waiting for sandwiches or a breakfast burrito.

SARDI’S DEN (1994): Started by Louis and Gale Sardinas in 1994, Sardi’s was purchased by alums Irv Harrington and Mike McHenry in 1995. Sardi’s specializes in ribs but has a host of daily specials.

BLUE HERON (2002): Serving steaks, seafood and sushi, Blue Heron also has a downstairs bar with daily specials and live entertainment.

MELLOW MUSHROOM (2000): It’s part of the chain, but doesn’t really feel like it since it occupies the former Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity house, which was condemned in 1999. Creative remodeling and a sense of humor combined for the current interior design.

SMOKIN’ PIG (2009): Only open Thursday–Saturday, this family-owned barbecue spot has quickly become a Clemson tradition.

10 FUN THINGS TO DO WHILE YOU’RE IN CLEMSON

Play a round of golf at the 18-hole championship JOHN E. WALKER SR. GOLF COURSE, with its signature Tiger Paw hole. Call 864-656-0236 to set up a tee time.

Spend an afternoon at the SOUTH CAROLINA BOTANICAL GARDEN (take a picnic). Almost 300 acres, it includes formal and informal gardens, woodlands, ponds, walking trails and garden structures such as the nature-based sculpture program. Pick up a map at the Fran Hanson Discovery Center.

The “90 MINUTES BEFORE KICK-OFF CONCERT.” Tiger Band leads this pep rally in the amphitheater before every game. Then head over for Tiger Walk to cheer on the football team as they arrive.

Sit in a swing at ABERNATHY PARK overlooking Hartwell Lake. Built in 2004 to honor the late Clemson mayor (and Clemson professor), Larry Abernathy, the park includes walkways, boardwalks, picnic tables and boat docks.

STUMPHOUSE TUNNEL AND ISSAQUEENA FALLS (or broaden out and check out the other waterfalls close by). It’s worth the drive to see the birthplace of Clemson Blue Cheese.

HIKE THE FOOTHILLS TRAIL. Not the entire 76 miles from Table Rock State Park to Oconee State Park, but you can find sections that range from easy to strenuous. The University has been involved since its inception, and students recently constructed an accessible viewing platform at Sassafras Mountain, the highest point in S.C. Map of Foothills trail.

Take a hike or a bike ride in the EXPERIMENTAL FOREST. It’s large: 17,500 acres dedicated to education, research and demonstration. There are trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding. See maps and pdfs of the Clemson Experimental Forest trails and waterfalls at clemson.edu/cafls/cef/maps_of_trails.html.

Take a picture under the CENTENNIAL OAK, the largest bur oak in South Carolina and believed to be more than 100 years old. Four feet shorter than it was in 1988, it’s considered “over mature.” That means you need to take your picture this year, not next.

Wander through CEMETERY HILL. It’s a favorite place to tailgate, and it’s full of Clemson history. If you’re a cemetery buff, you might find some headstones worth a rubbing. Take a virtual tour.

If it’s GAME DAY, get to campus early and enjoy the excitement. There’s nothing like it anywhere else.

 

Football Team Succeeding in Classroom and on Field

Defensive back Jerrodd Williams graduated this spring.

Defensive back Jerrodd Williams graduated this spring.

CLEMSON’S FOOTBALL TEAM HAS FINISHED THE LAST TWO SEASONS WITH A top-10 final ranking in the USA Today coaches’ poll. The NCAA Academic Performance Public Recognition Awards released in May show that the team is performing just as well in the classroom. For the fourth consecutive year, Clemson ranks among the top 10 percent of all FBS football Bowl Subdivision) programs nationally in Academic Progress Rate (APR) score.

Clemson is one of only five FBS programs ranked in the top 10 percent each of the last four years, joining Boise State, Duke, Northwestern and Rutgers. Clemson is the only FBS program nationally to finish each of the last three seasons in the top 25 of both the AP and USA Today polls on the field, and in the top 10 percent of APR scores in the classroom.

Excellence in the Academic Progress Rate has translated into a strong graduation rate for the Clemson football program. Over the last four years, 67 of Clemson’s 72 seniors have earned degrees, 93.1 percent. The APR is a metric developed to track the academic achievement of teams each academic term. Each studentathlete receiving athletically related financial aid earns one retention point for staying in school and one eligibility point for being academically eligible. A team’s total points are divided by points possible and then multiplied by one thousand to equal the team’s APR score.

Collaboration with Adobe to Support Next-Generation Creativity

Jim Holscher, Adobe’s vice president of education field operation.

Keith Spencer, Senior account executive, Adobe Education

CLEMSON AND ADOBE ARE WORKING TOGETHER to enable campus wide access to Adobe’s Creative Cloud tools for all faculty, staff and students. Creative Cloud is a platform for making, sharing and delivering creative work through design, Web, video, collaboration and digital-imaging tools.

In addition, Adobe will invest in an innovative, state-of-the-art Adobe Digital Studio in Cooper Library that will serve as a teaching, training and collaboration environment to support next-generation learning and creativity. This joint effort includes software training support, access to the Digital Publishing Suite platform to produce academic and professional publications, and on-campus student internship programs sponsored by Adobe.

Through this collaboration, Adobe will help Clemson become a flagship institution for developing new applications for digital publishing and content creation across campus.

“Ubiquitous access to Adobe’s Creative Cloud will transform and elevate the quality, innovation and creativity of our communication practices at every level and across all media,” said David Blakesley, Campbell Chair in Technical Communication and professor of English. “Clemson is already known as a leader in communication across the curriculum, so this new implementation raises the bar for everyone.”

“Today’s students want to make a difference in the world, and they want to do it using the technology tools they’ve grown up with,” said Jim Holscher, Adobe’s vice president of education field operation. “Through our work with Clemson University, we are providing faculty, staff and students with the right tools to successfully create and communicate their ideas while mastering essential communication skills that will increase their marketability to potential employers.”

Lifelong Tigers

Tigers turn South Florida Clemson Orange

Tigers from all over the country converged on South Florida for the Orange Bowl. And the South Florida Clemson Club was in the midst of all the activity — organizing, helping, hosting and welcoming alumni and friends.

Showing that it’s possible to work together in the midst of a heated competition, Clemson and Ohio State alums teamed up to fight hunger, packing boxes of food for “Feeding South Florida.”

More than 100 alumni and friends were in South Beach Thursday night at the Clevelander, where the landscape was purple and orange, and a Tiger Paw was projected on the side of the building and in the hotel’s swimming pool. At Bokamper’s in Fort Lauderdale, more than 75 joined up to celebrate the Tigers and meet up with old and new friends.

The morning of the Orange Bowl began with an alumni brunch at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach with more than 300 in attendance. James Clements addressed the Clemson Family for the first time as University president. He thanked the Barkers for their many contributions to Clemson and shared the significance behind Clemson’s rise in the national rankings.

More than 2,000 Clemson Family members gathered at the One Clemson tailgate inside the Sun Life Stadium prior to the game. The Clemson band, cheerleaders and the Tiger made appearances, and President Clements welcomed guests as they prepared to cheer the Tigers on to a 40-35 victory over the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Two student bloggers, Savannah Mozingo and De Anne Anthony, traveled to South Florida to capture and share the excitement of Orange Bowl week on their blog, TigressTales. Access their blog and hear President Clements’ remarks at clemson.edu/clemsonworld/orangebowl.

Clemson in the Lowcountry at the University's Wind Turbine Drivetrain Testing Facility in North Charleston.

Clemson in the Lowcountry at the University’s Wind Turbine Drivetrain Testing Facility in North Charleston.

Clemson in the Lowcountry

More than 300 people gathered for dinner and a meeting where Nick Rigas, director of the SCE&G Energy Innovation Center and executive director of the Clemson Restoration Institute, spoke at the University’s Wind Turbine Drivetrain Testing Facility in North Charleston. The meeting attendance on Jan. 23 doubled the Clemson in the Lowcountry Club’s normal attendance rate. Eddie Gordon is president of the club.

Greenville Club presents Blue Chips and Bluegrass

More than 350 turned out for the Greenville Club’s Blue Chips and Bluegrass event, a recruiting recap and oyster roast held Feb. 7 at the Crescent in downtown Greenville. Club president Rick Ammons and club member and event organizer Chris McCameron presented IPTAY with a $2,500 check for the Glenn Brackin Memorial Scholarship. The event featured Mickey Plyler from 104.9 Talk Sports, who spoke about recruiting, and The Drovers Old Time Medicine Show entertained the crowd with bluegrass music.

Aiken County Club wraps it up

The Aiken County Club held their Recruiting Wrap-Up event Feb. 6 at the Aiken Municipal Building, where more than 50 people heard Larry Williams from Tigerillustrated.com speak about recruiting. Tripp Bryan serves as Aiken County club president, and Bryan Young is vice president.

Become a Clemson Volunteer!

Alumni Vol Book cover Want to get more involved at Clemson? Looking for a place to share your experience and love for Clemson? Go to clemson.edu/alumni and click on “Volunteer Opportunity Guide” to learn how you can get involved

Seketa named honorary alumnus

John Seketa named honorary alumnus

John Seketa named honorary alumnus

The Alumni Association has named retired assistant athletic director John Seketa as an honorary alumnus in recognition of his hard work and devotion to Clemson and the Alumni Association. Over the past 28 years, Seketa served as game manager during home football games, coordinating all game-day activities for Clemson athletics, Tiger Band, the University administration and several student groups.

He also was executive director of the Tiger Letterwinners Association, where he expanded football reunion activities and Athletic Hall of Fame ceremonies, significantly increasing attendance. In 2004, Seketa received the ACC Basketball Officials Association Fred Bakarat Award for outstanding service and dedication to the ACC and its basketball officials.

“John has played a significant role in enhancing all our Olympic sports by generating marketing plans and concepts that promote opportunities for our fans,” said Bill D’Andrea, executive senior associate director for IPTAY external affairs. “His contributions in this area have made a profound impact on our coaches’ ability to recruit.”
Seketa also played a crucial role in making Military Appreciation Day a celebrated campus tradition. Two years ago, ACC administrators invited Seketa to share his expertise in Clemson’s military recognition, resulting in similar observances of Military Appreciation Day at every ACC institution.

“There is no question that John Seketa’s leadership has established Clemson as the best in the nation with regard to our Military Appreciation Day,” said D’Andrea.
Seketa continues to serve the University as a member of Tiger Brotherhood and the Clemson Corps Scroll of Honor Committee.

#TigerRollCall

The Alumni Association wants to ensure we have accurate contact information for all alumni so that we can keep everyone informed about all things Clemson, all the time. And to do that, we need your help.
Simply go to clemson.edu/alumni and click the “Update Your Information” button. Then post on your social media outlets that you updated your contact information with Clemson, and use the hashtag #TigerRollCall in your post.
A monthly drawing will take place during May, June and July for everyone who submits an update. Additionally, each person who shares on social media using the hashtag #TigerRollCall will receive an additional entry (maximum two entries per person). At the end of the campaign, a final drawing will take place with a grand prize of two Alumni box seats to the Clemson vs. North Carolina football game on Sept. 27.

Tailgating with the Tigers

You’ve known it for years, but Southern Living magazine has made it official. Tailgating at Clemson is a bang-up way to share the day with 80,000 of your closest family and friends.

When Southern Living held its competition for “The South’s Best Tailgate” last fall, Clemson took the prize over a host of other schools, with Alabama and Ole Miss coming in close behind. We weren’t surprised, and know you weren’t either. This fall, we did it again.

The atmosphere in Clemson every fall fairly sparkles with anticipation. From the rumbling of RVs rolling into town on Thursday (or Wednesday for those more hard-core fans) to the streets lined for the First Friday Parade and the sea of orange tents that sprout up almost pole-to-pole in a one-mile radius around the stadium, Clemson football weekends are a series of Tiger-themed parties thrown for our 80,000-plus closest friends and family.

And we’re not talking hot dogs and potato chips, although you might find those as well, as long as they’re freshly grilled and served hot. Clemson fans cook up tailgating fare that would make Rachael Ray proud, with coordinated tablecloths, decorations, coolers and seating that could come straight out of a Martha Stewart magazine. If it’s not orange, with an occasional purple accent, you won’t find it here.

You will, however, find visitors to those tents sporting the colors of the opposing teams. Because if Clemson fans are anything, they are friendly. Even the weekend of the South Carolina game, the tents are big enough for Tiger fans and Gamecock fans alike. There might be plenty of banter and (hopefully) good-spirited insults, but food and drinks will be shared.

Tailgates at Clemson start early and run late. When the game is over, the party keeps going, with cornhole games and beverages and tall tales. Friends and families find reasons to hang around for a while, even if it’s just to wait until the traffic begins to clear. They’ve been gathering here for generations, and it doesn’t get much sweeter.

Tailgating Stories

Tailgating Recipes

 

 

Tailgating Photo Gallery

When tailgaters set up at Clemson, they plan to stay the day.

When tailgaters set up at Clemson, they plan to stay the day.