Actor Jamie Foxx plays supporting role in Clemson lineman Nyles Pinckney's TD celebrationHerald-Journal, Spartanburg, S.C. — Todd Shanesy Herald-Journal, Spartanburg, S.C.
Oct. 18-- Oct. 18--As a defensive lineman who has been practicing with the Clemson offense on its jumbo package, special goal-line plays featuring 300-pounders, Nyles Pinckney figured he could score a touchdown on any given Saturday.
He decided Friday night about how he would react to a touchdown while Clemson players were watching the movie "Any Given Sunday."
Pinckney got his big chance Saturday afternoon during a 73-7 win at Georgia Tech. After he plowed into the end zone from 1 yard out, sure enough, he broke out a celebration like the one by actor Jamie Foxx, as third-string quarterback Willie Beamon for the Miami Sharks, after throwing a touchdown pass.
"I saw the celebration he had when they scored a touchdown," Pinckney said. "So I told myself, 'If I get this touchdown, I'm going to do it.' I didn't lose my mind with it. But I got my chance and I did it."
The celebration dance made more sense for Sharks. Foxx put his hand on top of his helmet to represent a fin and then did some wiggling.
So Pinckney had some explaining to do when he got to the Tigers' sideline.
"I told him to act like he's been there before," Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said. "He reminded me that he had not been there before."
It's the dream of most defensive linemen to score a touchdown. Pinckney has been dreaming a long time He's a fifth-year graduate student from Whale Branch High School in Beaufort.
"All I saw was the end zone," Pinckney said. "I was just trying to make sure I had the ball first. Ball security is the most important thing.. ... It was a great feeling, especially after being here five years and seeing guys like Christian (Wilkins, now an NFL player for the Miami Dolphins, interestingly enough) get a chance on that package and me finally getting my chance."
Pinckney lined up at the fullback position. Behind him was freshman defensive lineman Bryan Bresee in the halfback position, giving Clemson 600-plus pounds of running back. Georgia Tech called a timeout to talk about what to do. The Tigers stayed with the play. Quarterback Trevor Lawrence handed off to Pinckney and then faked a pitch to Bresee.
Pinckney bounced a couple of defenders on his way past the goal line and then went into his Shark shake.
"Just physical football," Swinney said. "Hat on a hat. You impose your will upon them. It's not going to be pretty, but you have to move somebody. It was good to see big Nyles finish it off. I was excited for him."
As for the celebration, well, that was one that got away.
"It won't happen again," Pinckney said.
That's because he will have been there before.
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