#ALLIN: The Story of Clemson Tigers Fan Logan Wires

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From Last Word On College Football, By Jack Hummel

It was the most important college football game of the season to date. Last Saturday, Death Valley shook the state of South Carolina with 83,362 fans cheering during a back-and-forth battle as Clemson upset Louisville 43-36. A match-up of Top Ten teams with inside track to the ACC Championship and College Football Playoffs on the line. The deafening crowd in orange stood on their feet and contributed to Louisville’s six penalties, as the Cardinals committed two false starts in the game’s first possession. The overwhelming sea of Tiger fans cheered, deafening the play call and unnerving the No. 3 Cardinals.

In Section H-AA, Row 1, Seat 85, one young fan stood out among the rest. Logan Wires is a 16-year-old boy from Anderson, South Carolina.

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Logan’s ticket for the Louisville vs. Clemson game. Photo courtesy of Bill Wires.

“He goes to a regular school, he takes honors classes, like every other teenager out there, he struggles with Chemistry,” Logan’s father Bill laughs, “He’s just a happy kid.” Logan’s had a tough road over 16 years, but he had plenty to be happy about Saturday night.

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Logan gets a visit from a special fan — the Clemson Tiger mascot — at his school. Photo courtesy of Bill Wires.

Heart Of A Tiger

Wires, who has cerebral palsy, is confined to a wheelchair. He’s active in his church and known as a social butterfly. With the assistance of doctors and nurses, Logan has been taking occupational and physical therapy his entire life. The 16-year old never complains and doesn’t let his condition get him down.

“We all have battles, Logan’s are just a little more visible than others,” said the elder Wires.

Bill Wires took Logan to his first Clemson Football game in 2009. Logan was 10 years old at the time.  Logan was immediately hooked on Clemson football. Rarely will you find Logan in anything other than Clemson orange and Saturdays always revolve around Clemson football. Logan, his brother Carson, and father Bill are season ticket holders, making it to almost all home games at Memorial Stadium.

In a thriller last Saturday, the Tigers put to rest their reputation for sitting down in big moments, as they stopped Louisville in the final seconds to upset the No. 3 ranked opponent. Like his team, Logan, too, refused to sit down during his team’s big moments.

“I was watching the game,” said Wires, “and I turned and looked and he was standing up!”

Logan is occasionally made to stand, but only with assistance during therapy sessions. He is unable to stand without assistance. “I said, ‘Son, what are you doing?!” said Wires, afraid his son was going to fall, “His response was ‘Dad, they need me to stand and cheer, so I’m gonna stand.’”

“Dad, they need me to stand and cheer, so I’m gonna stand.” — Logan wires

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The tweet that touched so many fans. Photo courtesy of Bill Wires.

The Accidental Inspiration

Holding onto the rail in front of him in the ADA section of the stadium, Logan held himself up without assistance and cheered on his Clemson Tigers. Bill Wires pulled out his phone and took a picture of his son cheering the Tigers to victory. It wasn’t until Sunday night that Bill came across the picture on his phone, and shared it on Facebook. It was meant for family and friends to see Logan’s resiliency and progress. With only a small following online, Bill never thought his post would go viral overnight.

“That was the last thing on my mind when I posted it.”

What was meant to comfort a family ended up inspiring a nation of college football fans.

Waking up on Monday to missed calls and text messages from CBS Sports, ESPN, and others, Bill was astounded.

“I got in my car the next morning, driving down the road listening to the same radio station I listen to every morning, and they’re talking about my son,” said Wires.

When you ask the 16-year old about all the attention, his answer is quite simple: “All I did was stand up.” Despite unbelievable modesty, his father explains to Logan that he did much more than just stand up.

“When he stood up, Logan was just being Logan,” said Wires, “That’s just him. He’s gonna give all he has anytime he has the opportunity to.”

#ALLIN

In 2008 Tommy Bowden resigned six games into the Tigers’ season and Dabo Swinney was named the interim head football coach. Swinney sat down with his players and told them that he was “all in”, despite having the odds against him. Eight years later, the motto “All In,” as well as the social media hashtag #ALLIN, is found on signs, shirts, and any other orange game day paraphernalia in upstate South Carolina.

It’s also used when describing Logan Wires both as a Clemson fan and as a person.

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Logan and his father, Bill, share a special moment high above the serenity of upstate South Carolina. Photo courtesy of Bill Wires.

Standing is simple act for almost everyone else in this world. But for Logan, it’s a challenge that nature has presented to him.

Who would have thought that most memorable moment from the season’s most important college football game wouldn’t come from Heisman candidates Lamar Jackson or DeShaun Watson hurdling opponents or heaving touchdowns, but would come from a modest 16 year old in a wheel chair?

You can find Logan at Clemson home games this season cheering, and maybe even standing, for his Tigers.

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