Dabo Swinney says he and his second-ranked Clemson Tigers have nothing to prove when they travel to No. 14 Louisville on Saturday.
“We just want to win,” the Clemson coach said. “We are not trying to win any point show. We are not trying to win the stat wars. We just want to win the game. I’ll take 3-2 right now … 3-2, shake the hand and come on back to the house and let ya’ll (the media) talk about how bad the offense is, and we will be 3-0 and moving on to the next one.”
Swinney said he was serious about the 3-2 score. Though he would like to see his team improve, the main objective is to win the game and he just wants his players to find a way to win the game regardless of the score.
That’s what his Tigers (2-0) did last week in rallying from a second-quarter 6-0 deficit to beat No. 15 Auburn, 14-6.
“It is early in the season. I know we are going to get better,” Swinney said. “We played one great game and the other game against a great defense. I think a top 5 defense, but we left a little on the table. We made enough hey to win the game, but we left a little out there and did not quite take advantage of all the opportunities there.”
Against Auburn, Clemson turned the ball over when it seemed it was going in for another possible touchdown in the third quarter. Quarterback Kelly Bryant also gave up on a couple of pass calls that could have gone for scores, plus Greg Huegel was too low on his only field goal attempt and it got partially blocked.
“We turned it over, and we did not have the ball much early on, but we still found a way to win the game,” Swinney said. “And more importantly, we finished the game with three minutes and fifteen seconds and three timeouts on the other side and take a knee.
“There are a lot of positives we can build on early in the season against a good team and a good defense. We will get better, but I’m not going up there (Louisville) with anything to prove at all. I’m just trying to win.”
And the Tigers will do whatever it takes to get a win.