ACC, SEC looking at tapes of fight

Updated: November 22, 2004, 3:23 PM ET
Associated Press

CLEMSON, S.C. -- The Southeastern Conference and Atlantic Coast Conference will review tapes of the fight that broke out in the fourth quarter of the Clemson-South Carolina game before deciding on penalties.

SEC commissioner Mike Slive and ACC commissioner John Swofford both issued releases on Sunday. Slive said he expected to have a decision by Monday. "There is no place in intercollegiate athletics for this kind of conduct and no excuse for it, rivalries not withstanding," Slive said. "This conduct runs counter to everything we value in athletics and will not be tolerated."

The Tigers and Gamecocks had a brief confrontation before Saturday's game and throughout officials had to quell small skirmishes and separate players.

The brawl broke out with 5:48 to go. It started when Tigers defensive lineman Bobby Williamson took down South Carolina quarterback Syvelle Newton and appeared to linger too long on top of him.

South Carolina offensive lineman Chris White came to help Newton. White's teammates Na'shan Goddard and Jabari Levey went after Williamson. Tigers Cory Groover, Donnell Clark and Gaines Adams joined in and the chaos began as both sidelines cleared.

South Carolina's Lou Holtz, coaching his last game with the Gamecocks, and Clemson coach Tommy Bowden sprinted to the center of the melee to try and break things up. Security and police officers were needed to restore order. Clemson went on the to win the game 29-7.

Clemson athletic director Terry Don Phillips said Sunday he was working with the ACC to determine whether players could face discipline.

Holtz said he would meet with South Carolina athletic director Mike McGee along with other school administrators and take immediate action against those responsible.

"When players make a decision to run out on the field, there are going to be repercussions from those decisions," Holtz said.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press