Following North Carolina State’s last-second loss to Clemson Saturday, Wolfpack coach Dave Doeren had a burning question.
It wasn’t how the Tigers broke so many big plays.
It wasn’t what’s next for N.C. State, which suffered back-to-back losses to the third- and fourth-ranked teams in the College Football Playoff rankings.
It wasn’t even why didn’t his team get properly lined up on a critical fourth-down play that negated a huge gain that put the Wolfpack inside the 10-yard line with less than 20 seconds to play.
It was about a computer.
Doeren wanted to know why a laptop was photographed on the Tigers’ sideline during their 38-31 victory.
“I’d like to know why there was a laptop on Clemson’s sideline, too,” Doeren said. “I’d like that to be investigated.”
Doeren said he saw a picture of the laptop on the Clemson sideline as he was heading to the post-game news conference.
“A picture was going around Twitter showing a laptop on Clemson’s sideline. That’s illegal,” was what Doeren said to the assembled media.
A quick search of Twitter didn’t provide the picture Doeren was talking about.
For his part, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney laughed when asked about the laptop.
“I have no idea,” Swinney said. “The only thing I can say is maybe it was somebody with social media, or something. It wasn’t anybody with football, I can tell you that.”
Clemson’s Sports Information Director for football, Tim Bourret, said the laptop belonged to a student who’s a member of school’s social media team.
One person tweeted a similar guess, saying that if there was a laptop, it was the property of Clemson’s social media department.
“Totally spitballing here, but Clemson’s social media crew grinds out content & has field access. We’ll see,” Joe Ovies posted on Twitter.
Another Twitter post provided a picture of a laptop on Clemson’s sideline during the tigers game against Virginia Tech. That post explained it was uploading video for social media.
Another person posited the idea that if there was a laptop, it belonged to a photographer.
Still another person on Twitter wrote, “Clemson had a laptop on the sidelines reviewing plays of each snap. They claimed it was for their coaches show.”
But much of the social media response to Doeren’s assertion was critical of the coach and N.C. State.