1977

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1977 in Clemson History

[edit] Notable Alumni

[edit] Events in 1977

  • Coach Charlie Pell takes over helm of the Tiger football program.1977 Clemson University Varsity Football Roster [1]
  • The Bookstore, Clemson's downtown disco, opens in the former Tiger Paw location.
  • New IBM system 370 model 165-II replaces previous campus mainframe computer, operating at full capacity since 1976.
  • Head of Computer Center, Russell Schoust, resigns amidst system "dating" service scandal (what kinda gal U like?). This is the lede story in the Buzzard published March 17, 1978.
  • The Orange & White is founded as a dedicated source of sports coverage of Clemson University athletic programs. With offices on College Avenue, it is an independent operation without university connections. Former editor of The Tiger Steve Ellis is founding editor and reporting staff.
  • Eta Psi chapter of Sigma Chi fraternity is colonized on campus.
  • Guitarist Les Dudek releases his second album, "Say No More", and several songs such as "Baby, Sweet Baby" and "Old Judge Jones" get sustained airplay on WSBF and at Tiger Town Tavern.
  • February: Jordan Hall, the new biological laboratory building, opens, relieving antiquated facilities in Long Hall.
  • February 25: Jimmy Buffett performs in Tillman Auditorium to sell-out crowd of 1,500 - three dollar admission - the most successful concert on campus in some time. The possibility of moving the show to Littlejohn Coliseum for more seating is rejected since it will drive up ticket costs.
  • February 26: The Atlanta Rhythm Section gets its second Billboard Top 40 hit, "So In To You", entering chart this date. Song will rise to number 7 during 14-week run. (Whitburn, Joel, "The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits", Billboard Publications, Inc., New York, 1985, ISBN 0-8230-7518-4, page 27.)
  • March 17: Progressive art rock band Emerson, Lake & Palmer releases double album "Works Volume 1", and epic 13:19 song "Pirates" gets sustained airplay on WSBF.
  • Spring: TAPS narrowly avoids disaster after staff proclivity for playing Spades in lieu of editing the yearbook almost scuttles publication of the current edition.
  • April: Varsity cheerleaders for 1977-1978 are selected. They are Fulton Breen, Chris Carter, Joey Erwin, Terry Hall, Steve Klengson, Jim Mehserle, Colin Richmond, Aline Crews, Alice Gorena, Mary Hill, Cathy Pool, Jan Rushton and Kathy Watts. Head cheerleader is George Langstaff, and the Tiger is Randall Addison. J.V. cheerleaders are Joe Barna, Thom Brown, Red Cook, Clark Curry, Steve DeConti ( previously a linebacker on the Clemson Varsity Football team ), Bill Newell, Tony Pichirallo, Steve Trotman, Mary Barnes, Carol Corley, Cindy McDowell, Lynn Peck, Robin Russell and Julie Stephens. The J.V. Tiger is Dave Rheney. (TAPS 1978, Volume 68, page 365.)
  • April 3: Edwards Hall, under construction since 1975 for the College of Nursing, is dedicated. Completion cost is approximately $2.349 million, including $300,000 of audio-visual equipment. Nursing facilities were previously located in Strode Tower, Daniel Hall, and Martin Hall. It is named for Dr. Robert Cook Edwards, President of Clemson University, 1958-1979.
  • April 16: The Spartanburg-based Marshall Tucker Band's "Heard It In A Love Song" enters the Billboard Top 40, reaching number 14 during its 13-week run, the band's highest charting single. (Whitburn, Joel, "The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits", Billboard Publications, Inc., New York, 1985, ISBN 0-8230-7518-4, page 204.)
  • May 2: Lambda Theta Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. is chartered on Clemson campus.
  • May 25: Star Wars, later retitled Episode IV - A New Hope, opens in theatres, and the world is never the same again. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9gvqpFbRKtQ
  • May 31: Clemson athletic officials announce the university will field women's volleyball for the first time in the fall of 1977. Grace Lyles is named the Lady Tigers' first coach. ("Clemson: Where The Tigers Play", by Sam Blackman, Bob Bradley and Chuck Kriese, Sports Publishing, L.L.C., 2001, page 195).
  • Early August: The Clemson Tiger Band relocates from cramped quarters in a converted storeroom across the hall from the campus bookstore underneath Harcombe Commons dining hall to the renovated ground floor of the Holtzendorff YMCA building. The band room occupies the former gymnasium space on the rear of the building facing historic Riggs Field.
  • August 22-August 24: Y movie at the YMCA is Young Frankenstein, 7 and 9 p.m. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQiXPHhZ4Go
  • August 22-August 28: Videotape in the Loggia is the Marx Brothers in Love Happy, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hoSlJhUuEoo and the cult Reefer Madness. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bM_vLk1I6G4
  • August 22-September 3: Union Gallery in the Loggia presents "Faces" by Alan Wendt and Jack Blake.
  • August 24: Edgar's opens for the semester.
  • August 25: American Dream Disco on the Union Plaza, 9-12 p.m., free.
  • August 26-August 27: The Coffeehouse movie is Buster Keaton's The General, in The Gutter. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3xh108cLbo
  • August 27: The Union hosts a Beach Party at East Bank, music by WSBF, beer is 25 cents. Student-driven 1961 Chevrolet goes out of control on East Beach Road about 7:30 p.m. and strikes pick-up truck. Driver seriously injured, passenger is treated and released.
  • August 27-August 28: Union sponsors a tubeing trip - sign up at the Information Desk in the Loggia.
  • August 28: Free Flick is Rebel Without A Cause, Y Theatre, 8 p.m. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uaIq234nL04&feature=related
  • August 29-September 3: Y movie at the YMCA is Carrie, 7 and 9 p.m. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJe0iVo8y3A Videotape Awareness Week in the Loggia: Days of Thrill and Laughter, Rolling Stones, Knock Out, Solzhenitsyn.
  • September 1-September 3: Edgar's presents band Overland Express at 8:30 p.m., 75 cent admission. Coffeehouse act is Lakeland, shows at 9, 10, 11 p.m., 50 cent admission.
  • September 3: The Union sponsors a Wildwater Raft Trip - sign up at the Information Desk in the Loggia. A twenty-two year old student, Mack Randall Hayes, dies of injuries suffered in accident on East Beach Road when he lost control of his 1961 Chevrolet and struck a pick-up truck on August 27.
  • September 4: Free Flick at the Y Theatre is The Valachi Papers, 8 p.m. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBLz82iuDKw
  • Fall semester: Work begins on the expansion of Clemson Memorial Stadium to add a second deck to the homeside south stands.
  • September 4-September 17: Union Gallery in the Loggia presents WSBF Album Art.
  • September 5-September 7: Y movie at the YMCA is Future World, 7 and 9 p.m. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fBIaTxHqmKg&feature=related
  • September 5-September 11: Videotape in the Loggia features Bugs Bunny cartoons, Return of Mighty Mouse. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b21nxQ6nffE
  • September 8-September 10: Robin and Linda Williams appear at The Gutter. Donation is 50 cents. Shows at 9, 10 and 11 p.m. Plant sale in the Palmetto Ballroom. Y movie at the YMCA is The Other Side of Midnight, shows at 7:30 p.m.
  • September 10: Clemson loses home opener to number ten-ranked Maryland, 14-21, but Clemson player Rex Varn makes thrilling interception and run back to tie the game at the half. Kick-off at 1 p.m. EDT. Clint Eastwood film Play Misty For Me shown in the Amphitheatre at dark, free. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFLwJpW6cDw
  • September 11: The Union sponsors a trip to Slippery Rock - sign up at the Information Desk in the Loggia. Free Flick at the Y Theatre is Lord of the Flies, 8 p.m.
  • September 12-September 14: Y movie at the YMCA is The Other Side of Midnight, shows at 7:30 p.m.
  • September 12-September 18: Videotape in the Loggia is Bouncing Britches.
  • September 13: Student elections held. Music Department Chamber Music Series presents Mark Regnier, guitarist, in Daniel Hall Auditorium, 8 p.m., free admission. Toad the Mime in Tillman Auditorium at 8 p.m., admission is $1.
  • September 14: In one of the most lurid cases of violence in Clemson history, two armed Lawrenceville, Georgia brothers break into a Charleston Avenue student apartment about 11:40 p.m. and assault two sleeping residents, one of whom is sexually mutilated and whom the attackers are angry with for dating the older brother's ex-wife.
  • September 14-September 16: Edgar's presents Meisburg and Walters at 8:30 p.m., 50 cent admission.
  • September 15: Severely injured student undergoes surgery at Emory University Hospital, Atlanta to, umm, repair his genitals. The procedure will be successful. In 1994, this will become known as the Bobbitt procedure.
  • September 16: Marc Bolan, of the band T Rex ("Bang A Gong, Get It On"), and his girlfriend Gloria Jones spent the evening of 15 September 1977 drinking at the Speakeasy and then dining at Morton's club on Berkeley Square, in Mayfair central London. While driving home early the morning of 16 September, Jones crashed Bolan's purple Mini 1275GT into a tree (now the site of Bolan's Rock Shrine), at Barnes Bridge, Barnes, South West London—less than a mile from his home at 142 Upper Richmond Road West in East Sheen. While Jones was severely injured, Bolan was killed in the crash, two weeks before his 30th birthday.
  • September: The Gutter, the Union coffeehouse, located under the YMCA, is closed by the fire marshall as unsafe.
  • September 17: Clemson edges seventeenth-ranked Georgia in Athens, 7-6. Kick-off at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
  • September 20: Student election run-offs held.
  • September 20-September 21: The recruiting arm of the U.S. Marine Corps flies a Bell AH-1 Hueycobra gunship onto Bowman Field for display to students.
  • September 21: Both suspects in the student assault case of September 14 are arrested in Atlanta. One had attempted suicide and was in a pyschiatric ward.
  • September 22: Managing Editor Steve Matthews and Editor Thom Taylor publish thorough front page account of the assault investigation in The Tiger, Vol. 71, No. 4.
  • September 22: Shooting takes place in the rear of the Red Carpet Lounge when 19-year-old Central resident Greg Simon shoots Haskell Cape of Seneca in the left thigh with a .357 magnum revolver. Cape is taken to Anderson Memorial Hospital where he is reported in good condition; Simon is arrested and charged assault and battery with intent to kill, and with carrying a pistol unlawfully. He is released on $10,000 bond on Saturday, September 23. This incident will turn out to be the beginning of the end for the Red Carpet as students become wary of the seedier element and stay away thereafter.
  • September 24: Clemson plays Georgia Tech "for the last time" as Tech continues to refuse to travel to Clemson. Tigers win, 31-14. Kick-off at 1:30 p.m. EDT. Of the seventeen games played between Tech and Clemson between 1953 and 1977, only once, in 1974, did the Yellow Jackets deign to come to Death Valley. To show the Atlanta business community how much money Clemson fans contribute to the local economy which WON'T be coming to town anymore, Tiger fans spend vast quantities of two dollar bills, many of them stamped with Tiger Paws. The local Federal Reserve bank sends out for two dollar denominations as all upstate banks are sucked dry by the demand. This is the start of Clemson's two dollar bill tradition. Ironically, when Georgia Tech joins the ACC on April 3, 1978, they HAVE to road trip to Clemson, starting in 1983.
  • September 26: Pickens County grand jury indicts two Georgia men on charges of assault and battery with intent to kill, assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, burglary and armed robbery. Older brother, still held in Georgia, fights extradition to South Carolina although younger one waived his extradition rights and surrendered to Pickens County authorities September 22.
  • September 29: Clemson University Concert Series presents the New Orleans Ragtime Orchestra in Littlejohn Coliseum, 8 p.m. Admission by student Activity Card, Season Ticket, or individual tickets on sale at gate. A Preservation Hall presentation, tour management by Pryor-Menz-Lee Attractions.
  • September 30-October 1: Folk singer Nina Kahle performs in Edgar's, admission is 75 cents solo or $1 per couple.
  • October 1: Clemson plays road game at Virginia Tech, winning, 31-13. Kick-off at 1:30 p.m. EDT. Two freshmen, Jeffery Sturt and Susan Strickland, are killed when the 1971 Opel GT driven by Sturt leaves S.C. Highway 183 about three miles north of Walhalla about 4 a.m. and goes down embankment and strikes tree, killing both instantly. The wreck is discovered by another motorist about 6:20 p.m.
  • October 3: Georgia Governor James Busbee signs extradition order returning the older brother involved in the September 14 attack on two Clemson students to Pickens County for trial on various charges.
  • October 7: Tigerama held in Death Valley. Fireworks display kicks off with WSBF playing Emerson, Lake & Palmer's version of Aaron Copland's "Fanfare for the Common Man". A heckuva show, agreed Tiger Band members.
  • October 8: The Tigers blank Virginia, 31-0, for Homecoming. Kick-off at 1 p.m. EDT.
  • October 10: Clemson University Concert Series presents the Chicago Symphony Orchestra String Quartet in Littlejohn Coliseum, 8 p.m. Admission by student Activity Card, Season Ticket, or individual tickets on sale at gate.
  • October 15: Clemson defeats Duke, 17-11, in Durham. Kick-off at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
  • October 16: An 18-year-old freshman mechanical engineering major commits suicide by jumping from the fourth-floor breezeway between M and O sections of Martin Hall about 2:30 a.m., after also having cut his wrists in his Johnstone dorm room. The Tiger reports on October 21 that his body is found about 8:55 a.m. by another student. In an example of extreme poor taste, the next day someone paints a target on the spot where he was found and Dean of Student Affairs Walter Cox reacts by having the concrete slab sandblasted clean almost before the paint has time to dry.
  • October 18: Some 1,200 students rally Tuesday night in the deteriorating Amphitheatre to protest administration plans for the outdoor theatre. Proposal drawings have circulated showing the columns removed and the facility being remodelled with "Clemson pink brick". From this ground swell, "Save Our Amphitheatre People" (SOAP) is born, and who will ultimately prevail in having the facility redone in traditional appearance. The rejected renovation plan was supposed to begin in November but will be delayed for further study.
  • October 18: Music Department Chamber Music Series presents Wanda and William Campbell, mezzo-soprano and tenor, in Daniel Hall Auditorium, 8 p.m., free admission.
  • October 19: Southern rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd performs at Greenville Memorial Auditorium, two days after release of album "Street Survivors", the fifth show of the "Tour of the Survivors".
  • October 20: Lynyrd Skynyrd's chartered Convair 240 airliner, registered N55VM, c/n 3, operated by L & J Company, departs from Greenville Downtown Airport, runs out of fuel en route to next concert and crashes five miles north of Gillsburg, Mississippi in a swampy pine forest while trying to reach an alternate airport. They were only 48 miles short of the destination, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, when they had fuel starvation. Four members of the band and crew are killed, as are both pilots. Lead singer and founder of the band, Ronnie Van Zant, dies at the crash site. (Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1977_Convair_240_crash)
  • October 21: CDCC sponsors an Octoberfest beer garden at the Hanover House (aka the "Hangover House"), 4:30-7 p.m., with 25 cent beer and music provided by WSBF.
  • October 22: Twentieth-ranked Tigers defeat N.C. State in Death Valley, 7-3, for Parents' Day. Kick-off at 1 p.m. EDT.
  • October 28-October 29: The Union sponsors an "All Nite" Halloween Party in the gameroom in the Union building.
  • October 29: Sixteenth-ranked Tigers blank Wake Forest, 26-0, in the Valley for IPTAY Day. Kick-off at 1 p.m. EDT.
  • October 31: Pickens County Circuit Judge John T. Gentry sentences the younger brother in the September 14 student attack case to fifteen years in prison, stating "If I were the victim of this crime, I would want to strap you and your brother in the electric chair and probably pull the switch myself with alacrity." Earlier in October, Gentry had sent the older brother to prison for life plus 45 years, warning him that if the judge had the Law of Israel as a sentencing option he would use it in this case. The injured student, still recovering in Atlanta, will return to school the following semester under a new identity to shield him from undue attention.
  • November 5: Thirteenth-ranked Clemson ties North Carolina, 13-13, in Chapel Hill. Kick-off at 1:30 p.m. EST.
  • November 6: The Kelly Barnes Dam, an earthen work above the Toccoa Falls Institute bible college, east of Toccoa, Georgia, gives way early Sunday morning and 39 die in the ensuing flood down a valley.
  • November 7: Work begins on Sirrine Hall renovation, its first such upgrading since its construction in 1939. The first phase is expected to take about nine months and cost $1.4 million.
  • November 8: Several hundred students are entertained by The Amazing Randi, world-renowned magician and escape artist, in Tillman Hall Auditorium, in a return visit to Clemson. He had previously performed in Tillman on December 3, 1974.
  • November 11: The Union sponsors November Nonsense on Bowman Field, featuring the world's largest chocolate cream pie, sixteen feet in diameter, as well as a Volkswagen Beetle-stuffing contest.
  • November 11: President R.C. Edwards makes appearance at the Friday evening pep rally in the Amphitheatre and pleads with students not to disturb the Notre Dame team at their hotel parking lot by taking a pep rally there, after irritation at Irish Coach Dan Devine for writing a letter to the ACC that week complaining about our vaunted crowd noise in the stadium. Let them get their rest and we will have a fair game, is the president's message.
  • November 12: Clemson plays the Notre Dame Fighting Irish close in a game in Death Valley, but loses, 17-21, to the eventual National Champions, led by quarterback Joe Montana. Kick-off at 1 p.m. EST. Irish Coach Dan Devine exhibits outrageous behavior late in the game, even running onto Frank Howard Field during a play to snatch up a penalty flag and hand it back to the referee who threw it. Notre Dame fans don't appreciate his behavior either and he will eventually get the axe after the 1979 season. But not before the Tigers administer some pay back! The Memorial Stadium crowd and Tiger Band give the Irish the silent treatment during the pre-game activities and do not raise a ruckus until the cannon fires at the end of a silent performance by the band when the Sousaphone pedal note of Tiger Rag is the first sound made! A hair-raising moment in Death Valley! Thirty-eight future NFL players, including Notre Dame quarterback Joe Montana and Clemson receiver Dwight Clark, take part in this game. In the 1982 NFC Playoffs, on January 10, 1982, with the San Francisco 49ers trailing the Dallas Cowboys, 27–21 in the final minute of play to advance to the Super Bowl, Clark will leap and catch a six-yard pass from quarterback Montana in the back of the end zone to give the 49ers a 28–27 victory. That play, one of the most famous in the history in the NFL, has been immortalized as "The Catch".
  • November 12: The Doobie Brothers perform in Littlejohn Coliseum at 8 p.m. with Pablo Cruise as opening act. Tickets are $7.50 on the floor or $6.50 in the stands, available at the Union ticket desk in the Loggia, Edgar's, The Record Hole, and the University Shop, both on College Avenue. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyxiEOWfiv0 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G54lfxiid_w
  • November 14: The Speakers Bureau presents renowned former Marquette University basketball coach and NBC sports commentator Al McGuire in Tillman Auditorium at 8 p.m. A reception follows the speech.
  • November 19: Tiger Band roll call and departure for Columbia at 8 a.m. with arrival at Irmo High School for practice at 11:15 a.m., beginning at 11:30. Departure for Williams-Brice Stadium at 2 p.m. Fifteenth-ranked Tigers defeat South Carolina, 31-27, who finish season, 5-7. The 15th-ranked Tigers defeat the Gamecocks, with Jerry Butler making "The Catch" of Steve Fuller's endzone pass in the last quarter. The Tigers had seen a 24-0 halftime lead evaporate, 24-27. Season record is 8-3-1, 4-1-1 in conference, second in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Originally scheduled kick-off time of 1:30 p.m. EST is pushed back to 4:10 p.m. EST.
  • November 21: The men's cross country team finishes 20th at the NCAA Meet at Washington State University. This is Clemson's first top-20 team in cross country. Clemson University Concert Series presents the New York Pro Arte Orchestra in Littlejohn Coliseum, 8 p.m. Admission by student Activity Card, Season Ticket, or individual tickets on sale at gate.
  • November 29: Music Department Chamber Music Series presents Marguerite and Edgar Schenkman, violin and viola duo, in Daniel Hall Auditorium, 8 p.m., free admission.
  • December: "Death Valley Disco", a disco arrangement of Tiger Rag performed by studio musicians and released under the name of The Big "O" Orchestra is released on 45 rpm 7-inch record by Easley-based Pineapple Records (Pineapple PA1978). "A Special Tribute To The 1977 Clemson Tigers & Fans", it will gets lots of airplay during football season for the next two seasons or so. The project was produced and arranged by Otis Forrest. Available at Mr. Knickerbocker's for $1.75.
  • December 7: Senator William Proxmire (D-Wisconsin) appears in Tillman Auditorium at 8 p.m. as the final Speakers Bureau presentation of the semester. At the time, the senator has the longest unbroken record in the history of the Senate in answering rollcall votes, having not missed one of some 5,000 since April 1966.
  • December 8: Dr. Piotr Tomasik, Vice-President for Science, at Pedagogriocal University, at Cz?stochowa, Poland, speaks in Brackett Hall, room 30, at 7:30 p.m. on "Chemical Education Behind The Iron Curtain". The speech is sponsored by the American Chemical Society Student Affiliates.
  • December 12-December 20: Final examinations held.
  • December 13: National Jet Services Douglas DC-3 (ex-USAAF C-53), N51071, c.n./msn 4837, charter crashes on takeoff from Evansville, Indiana en route to Nashville International Airport, killing all 29 on board, including the entire University of Evansville basketball team.
  • Christmas break: Work on the expansion of Clemson Memorial Stadium is halted when problems with a portion of the foundation are discovered. Previously unknown landfill is found at the site. Also, the P Plant removes the magnolia tree directly in front of the Loggia during the holiday week.
  • December 27: Midnight deadline for all Tiger Band personnel departing for Jacksonville from Clemson on December 28 accounted for. Dorms are not open so band members lodge at the Holiday Inn of Clemson.
  • December 28: Tiger Band roll call at the band room at 7 a.m., departure on Welborn buses at 8 a.m. for Jacksonville. Lunch in Swainsboro, Georgia at noon. Arrival at Ramada Inn West, Jax, at 6:30 p.m. All band personnel rendezvousing in Jacksonville must be accounted for by 8 p.m.
  • December 29: Pep rally held in Jacksonville, 7 p.m.
  • Final year for Tiger Band's worn-out 1963-vintage Guardsman uniforms, in which they perform a "Star Wars" half-time show at the Gator Bowl on December 30, Clemson's first bowl appearance since the 1959 Bluebonnet Bowl. Not surprisingly, the Pittsburgh marching band also does a "Star Wars" show. Bands practice together at 9 a.m. Basketball game at noon. Gator Bowl kicks off at 9 p.m. Eleventh-ranked Clemson is defeated by the tenth-ranked defending National Champion Pittsburgh Panthers led by future NFL star player and coach Matt Cavanaugh, 3-34, for a season record of 8-3-1. Kick-off at 9 p.m. EST.
  • December 31: Tiger Band loads buses at 8:30 a.m., departs Jacksonville at 9 a.m., ETA in Clemson: 8 p.m. Tiger Band bus 3 blows tire in Georgia - eww! Lavatories have not been pumped out in Jacksonville either, making for a heinous ride north.
  • Tiger football finishes the season ranked 19th in the Associated Press poll, Clemson's first appearance in a final season ranking since 1959. The Tigers do not appear in the United Press International final top twenty poll, however.



1976 The 1970's 1978
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