Game Summary - January 1, 1991
Clemson 30, Illinois 0
The Tigers brought the nations top defense into the game against Big Ten co-champion Illinois on a sunny day in Tampa where the temperature was 85 degrees at kickoff. It was the Illini, however, that held fast early with a strong goal-line stand on the game's first possession, forcing Clemson to settle for a field-goal.
But on Illinois' opening play on offense heralded running back Howard Griffith fumbled the ball away, and on the next play Tiger QB DeChane Cameron threw a 14-yard TD pass to Doug Thomas which extended the lead to 10-0. It was a hole the Illini could not escape.
The Tiger defense showed their ranking was for real highlighted by a Arlington Nunn 34-yard interception return for a TD. That and a career passing performance by Cameron (completing 73.7%) proved too much for the Illini. Clemson rolled to a 30-0 shutout in Coach Ken Hatfield's first bowl game at the Tiger helm.
Illinois was held to just 62 yards rushing and 246 yards of total offense. Cameron took home the MVP award for his efforts which included being the games leading rusher with 76 yards on the ground and completing 14-19 passes for 141 yards and 2 TDs.