CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd needs just one class to graduate in December so doesn't have much to do most days out of football.
That's the way he planned it.
Now, intends to savor every last moment of his final few weeks running the eighth-ranked Tigers offense.
"It's all bitter sweet for me," Boyd said Tuesday. "It's one of these deals where you like, 'Whoa, what happens from here?' You know it becomes a job after this."
Boyd's lone course for his December graduation is a strength and conditioning class he's taking on line.
"It's harder than I thought it would be," he said with a smile.
Things haven't quite worked out like he planned, bu Boyd said he does not regret passing on the NFL to play one more season at Clemson. Boyd and the Tigers had high expectations — he was among the preseason favorites for the Heisman Trophy while Clemson was chasing a national championship — but that has faded some after the 51-14 drubbing at home against third-ranked Florida State 51-14 on Oct. 19.
The Tigers (8-1, 6-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) have rebounded with road wins over Maryland and Virginia the past two weeks and head into their week off with a renewed sense for a special season.
Those victories "let us know that we haven't reached our peak yet," safety Robert Smith said. "There's better football to come."
Boyd believes that, too.
He spends most of his time in football offices or on the practice field with his teammates, coaches and friends. Boyd wants to soak up as much of camaraderie as possible before advancing to the next level.
He's already spoken with some other upperclassmen about returning to an empty Death Valley after their final home game against Citadel on Nov. 23 to reflect on how far they and the program have come.
"Each year, you start to grow more confident, you start to realize who you are, you start to become your own person," he said. "At the end, you're in the front row."
Boyd's happy with his season so far of 2,181 yards passing, 17 touchdowns and six interceptions. He's second in the ACC in average passing yards per game, pass efficiency and total offense. He's set several Clemson career marks and became just the third ACC quarterback in history to surpass 10,000 yards passing.