Clemson’s first touchdown of the season came at a cost as star wide receiver Mike Williams had to be carted off the field with a neck injury after pulling in a pass from quarterback Deshuan Watson.
The school said Williams was standing up at a hospital, where he was taken for tests.
The Tigers were lined up at the Wofford four-yard line when Williams ran a slant route, leapt into the air for the ball and when he came down slammed his shoulder into the field goal post with 11:07 left to play in the first quarter.
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Williams was down behind the end zone for several minutes, surrounded by trainers, medical personnel and coaches, including head coach Dabo Swinney. Williams was then strapped to backboard and lifted onto a cart. After his teammates came to offer support, Williams lifted up his right arm in a gesture to the cheering crowd.
Amazingly, Williams managed to keep one foot in bounds in the back of the end zone and hold on to the ball for a score. The play was initially ruled and incomplete, but eventually overturned to give Clemson a 7-0 lead.
Williams was later walking around with full movement in his arms and legs, according to Swinney. Willilams was back with his teammates once the game ended, wearing a neck brace and even signing a few autographs in the team tunnel.
Swinney had no idea how long Williams might be out, though Watson thinks it won’t be that long.
"He’s tough," said Watson, who directed the Tigers to touchdowns on all six drives he played. "He’s just going out there and giving it his all for the team.
The 6-foot-4, 220-pound junior was Clemson’s top receiver last season with 57 catches for 1,030 yards and six touchdowns.