Twitter was losing it on Nittany Lion quarterback Sean Clifford when it was looking as though Penn St might fall on the road last night to Purdue.
The Boilermakers are a very competitive bunch and a solid opponent on both sides of the ball. This did not stop Penn St fans from tweeting directly at Clifford after his lone turnover, a bad overthrow.
You can imagine what was being said
Please remember, these are amateur, student-athletes. I am all for raising the profile of young athletes and using their names on social media. To tweet directly at a student-athlete’s personal twitter account with messages of hate or ill will? Uncalled for.
Sean Clifford Responds
Clifford has obviously learned to have thick skin during his time in Happy Valley.
An experienced leader, Sean Clifford is 24 now and in a position to lead a very talented offense to huge production. He was not about to let one bad pass torpedo an entire season chalked full of promise.
It was a back and forth game that saw Purdue QB Aidan O’Connell attempt 58 passes, a dozen of which were caught by Iowa transfer Charlie Jones for 153 yards and a score.
O’Connell was 2nd Team Big-Ten last season, and Clifford stood toe to toe with him throughout the night.
Even when Clifford missed the opening drive of the second half for Penn St while cramping, he was able to keep his team in the game long enough to set the stage for his ridiculous final drive.
Sean Clifford Goes Full John Elway
In a game with seven lead changes, it was the final score that was the most impressive.
No one play in particular aside for maybe Western Kentucky transfer Mitchell Tinsley’s run-after-catch come to mind, rather, it’s the collection of plays and the rapid pace with which they were executed is the talk around the water cooler today.
With just over 2 minutes to play, Clifford engineered an eight play, 80 yard drive. He completed seven passes for 72 yards, including the go-ahead touchdown to veteran RB Keyvone Lee with just :57 left in the game. This was the seventh and final lead change on the night.
The final drive for Penn St was so efficient that it did not require the Nittany Lions to use either of their remaining timeouts.
Sean Clifford Deserves Apologies
It’s one thing for someone to experience the ups and downs that come natural with athletics and have to hear about it from your team’s fans publicly. To be attacked on social media for you performance in a game that isn’t even over yet? Outrageous.
I hope those same fans who were sending mean tweets to Clifford sent him twice as many nice ones.
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