What is the secret to Clemson’s success?

What is the secret to Clemson’s success?


What is the secret to Clemson’s success?


It is all about accountability and leadership

Since 2011, Clemson has won 82 games. Only Alabama during that time has won more.

The Tigers have won a national championship, played for another, won four ACC titles, finished inside the top 10 five times and beat the likes of some of college football’s most historical programs along the way … Alabama, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Notre Dame.

However, Clemson just isn’t winning on the field. The Tigers have won off the field as well. In those same seven seasons, the football program has also finished in the top 10 academically six times.

“I think that just speaks to the type of people involved in our program and the culture that drives everything here,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. “That is a simple answer to a question, but that is ultimately what it comes down to.”

Swinney continued by saying everything he and his staff have done since he took over the program in 2009 has been intentional and purposeful. He says the success is based on a lot of great people and players who have bought into who they are as a program, what they do and how they do it.

“We really believe in that,” he said. “We have great coaches, a great staff, great chemistry. We are all on the same page and we have really focused on the culture of our program.”

From 2011-’17, Clemson complied an 82-15 record, the most wins in a seven-year period in school history. Fifty three of those victories have come against ACC foes.

Clemson was in the top 10 of APR scores and the final top 25 of the Associated Press and the USA TODAY polls from 2011-’15, the only FBS program that could make that claim. After a one year absence, the Tigers returned to that stature in 2017 with a top four finish and a top 10 APR score.

When someone new comes through the front door, it is all about accountability and leadership. The veteran players make sure the new players understand the culture and what is expected of a Clemson player.

“It’s just the type of development that we have here and just the philosophy of our program,” Swinney said.

And it has made Clemson one of college football’s elite programs.

Hot off the press. ‘Back with a Vengeance’ is now available for online orders.  TCI takes an in-depth look at the upcoming season as the Tigers march towards another national championship.  Order your copy today!




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