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63 Days Until Kickoff! Dark Territory Clemson Letterman Of The Day

63 Days Until Kickoff!

Dark Territory Clemson Letterman Photo Of The Day

Terry Allen


(Photo Uploaded By Alan Cutts)

Today’s photo is of Terry Allen who lettered as a running back at Clemson from 1987-1989.

Terry Allen was noted for his toughness, perhaps the most resilient runner in Clemson history. The native of Georgia was Clemson's top rusher in 1987 and 1988, and only a knee injury prohibited him from leading the team in 1989.

Allen was not a highly recruited player out of high school. In fact, the overriding reason he decided to come to Clemson was Danny Ford's willingness to give him a shot at tailback. Every other school wanted him to be a defensive back because they had measured his speed at less than blazing. But, those other coaches failed to measure Allen's heart.

After red-shirting the 1986 season, Allen burst on the scene in 1987, leading the ACC in rushing and setting a Clemson freshman record. A key victory for the Tigers that year took place against Georgia, a 21-20 verdict. His straight ahead, run over the opposition approach, was pivotal on Clemson's winning touchdown drive.


In 1988 as a sophomore, he again led the team in rushing, and the year was climaxed with his selection as the offensive MVP of the Citrus Bowl victory over Oklahoma. Allen's junior year was a constant battle against injury.

He geared up for one last stand against South Carolina, and he responded with 89 yards in the first half, leading Clemson to a convincing lead. But, on his final carry of the first half, he was struck square in the knee, the area that had been giving him trouble. He never carried the ball again for the Tigers.

After that season, Allen decided to turn pro, a decision that was met with criticism due to his injuries. He felt if a team could draft him, they would be responsible for him and realize his work ethic. An injury during a senior year at Clemson would effectively end his career.


The gamble paid off. He was drafted in the 10th round by the Minnesota Vikings. He was injured during 1990, but the Vikings stayed with him. In seven healthy seasons, he has had four 1000-yard seasons and is the only running back in NFL history to come back from torn ACL injuries on both knees.

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Scott Rhymer can be reached at scottrhymer.tps@gmail.com

Thanks to the ACC.com

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