CLEMSON, SC. — It’s Game Day in Death Valley where No. 3 Clemson battles No. 15 NC State in ant Atlantic Division showdown. The Tigers hope to continue their run to an ACC Championship and a trip to the College Football Playoff.
Location: Memorial Stadium (Death Valley)
Kickoff: 3:30 p.m.
Announcers: Todd Blackledge, Holly Rowe, Sean McDonough
2018 Record: Clemson 6-0, NC State 5-0
ACC Record: Clemson 3-0 NC State 2-0
Series History: Clemson leads 57-28-1
Last Meeting: Clemson won 38-2` in 2017 at NC State
WHAT TO WATCH FOR THIS WEEK
– Clemson attempting to open a season 7-0 for the seventh time in program history and the third time in the last four years (1948, 1981, 2000, 2011, 2015 and 2016). Clemson earned conference titles in five of the
previous six seasons in which it opened 7-0.
– Clemson winning the first seven games of a season for the fourth time under Head Coach Dabo Swinney (2011, 2015, 2016). All other coaches in Clemson history have combined for three 7-0 starts, including one each by
Frank Howard, Danny Ford and Tommy Bowden.
– Clemson facing a ranked opponent for the first time since last year’s Sugar Bowl against No. 4 Alabama.
– Clemson winning its 15th of its last 17 matchups against opponents ranked in the AP Top 25 since 2015.
– Clemson improving to 24-18 against AP Top 25 teams under Head Coach Dabo Swinney.
– Clemson moving to 9-5 against AP Top 25 opponents at Death Valley under Swinney
WELCOME TO HOMECOMING
Saturday will be Clemson’s Homecoming, which has historically been a celebration that has included a Clemson victory 77 percent of the time since the first celebration in 1922. Clemson has an overall record of 71-20-3 for its previous 94 Homecoming games, a .771 winning percentage. That includes a 41-4-2 record (.894) on Homecoming games since the 1971 season.
The first homecoming game at Clemson was in 1922, a 21-0 loss to Centre that kicked off an 0-4-1 stretch through Clemon’s first five homecoming games. Clemson defeated Auburn in 1927 by a 3-0 score for its first
There is no record of a homecoming game in 1930 or 1938, but the event has been held in conjunction with a football game every year since 1939, even through the war years.
CLEMSON FOLLOWING BYE WEEKS
Since joining the ACC as a charter member in 1953, Clemson has played 56 regular season games following off weeks. The Tigers are 37-19 in those contests.
Clemson is 10-2 under Head Coach Dabo Swinney when playing a regular season game following an off week, including two such occurences in both the 2013 and 2014 seasons. Clemson has won eight of its last nine regular season games after bye weeks, including each of its last four. Clemson is 4-0 against NC State following off weeks since 1953, including wins in 1991, 2001, 2005 and 2013.
TOP 25 BATTLES BETWEEN CLEMSON AND NC STATE
While this will be the 87th meeting between Clemson and NC State, it will be just the sixth time both teams have been ranked in the Top 25 entering the game. NC State has a 3-2 lead in those previous Top 25 matchups. This marks the second consecutive year both teams have been ranked in the Top 25 entering the game, as Clemson was sixth by AP and NC State 20th prior to Clemson’s 38-31 win in Raleigh last year.
Prior to last year, it had been 25 years since the two teams met as top 25 foes.
Clemson and NC State have played a couple of high scoring games in recent years. In the history of Clemson football, Clemson has been involved in a game where at least 97 points were scored just seven times, but two of them have been Clemson vs. NC State games within the last six years.
Clemson defeated the Pack, 62-48, on Nov. 17, 2012 at Clemson, and the 110 points in that game rank second in Clemson history and the most since 1901. Then, in 2015, the two teams combined for 97 points in a 56-41 Clemson win. That is tied for the sixth-highest scoring game in Clemson history.
SWINNEY VS. THE TAR HEEL STATE
Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney has a 23-2 alltime record against ACC teams from North Carolina. That includes a 10-0 record against Wake Forest and a 4-0 mark in Winston-Salem. Saturday’s game with Wake Forest is the first of three games this year against ACC teams from North Carolina.
Swinney’s only losses to ACC teams from North Carolina were at North Carolina in 2010 (21-16) and at NC State in 2011 (37-13). He has won 17 games in a row against ACC teams from North Carolina. The Tigers have
scored at least 40 points in eight of those 17 and have scored at least 33 in 14 of those 17.
ROCKNE, BRYANT, SWINNEY
Head Coach Dabo Swinney placed himself in the company of two college football legends. Swinney enters Saturday’s game against NC State with an overall record of 107-30 for a .781 winning percentage.
In Clemson’s late-September win against Syracuse, Swinney passed the number of total victories earned by Notre Dame’s Knute Rockne, the winningest coach by percentage in Division I history. Rockne compiled a 105-12-5 career record from 1918-30 at Notre Dame for a record .881 winning percentage.
Swinney’s current .781 winning percentage is tied for 20th-best in Division I history among coaches with a minimum of 10 years experience. With a win against Wake Forest, Swinney passed Bear Bryant, who had a .780 winning percentage (323-85-17).
Robert – Clemson 49, NC State 17
Gavin – Clemson 42, NC State 24
Will – Clemson 28, NC State 17