By the Numbers: ACC Championship Game
Second-ranked Clemson has a chance to make Atlantic Coast Conference history Saturday when it takes on Pitt (8 p.m./ABC) at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, and it can do it on the 10th Anniversary of Dabo Swinney being hired as the Tigers’ head coach.
Swinney was permanently hired as Clemson’s 25th head coach on December 1, 2008. In his 10-plus years as the Tigers’ head coach, including seven games as the interim, Clemson is 113-30 under Swinney.
If would be fitting for Clemson to become the first-team in ACC history to win a fourth-straight outright ACC Championship on Swinney’s anniversary. It would also mark the Tigers’ fifth overall ACC Championship under Swinney, tying him with Danny Ford for second most in Clemson history.
Frank Howard owns the Clemson record with six ACC titles (8 conference titles overall). Howard’s teams won ACC Championships in 1956, 1958, 1959, 1965, 1966 and 1967. He also won two Southern Conference titles in 1940 and 1948.
Ford won ACC Championships in 1981, 1982, 1986, 1987 and 1988. He would have also won the 1983 title, but despite going 6-0 in conference play that year Clemson was ineligible for a conference title due to NCAA and ACC probation.
The Tigers currently own ACC Championships in 2011, 2015, 2016 and 2017 under Swinney’s direction.
Below are some more numbers you need to know heading into Saturday’s ACC Championship Game.
0-2: That is Clemson’s all-time record against Pitt. The Tigers lost to the Panthers in the 1977 Gator Bowl and then 43-42 at Death Valley two years ago on a last-second kick.
1: Clemson entering the week as one of only two programs in the country in the Top 10 in both total offense (539.1, third) and total defense (283.2, seventh). Clemson’s 255.9-yard average yardage differential is the best in the country.
2.2: That’s the number of yards rushing the Clemson defense is allowing per carry this season. It leads the nation by almost a half yard over the No. 2 team, Northern Illinois.
4: Clemson attempting to become the first team in ACC history to win four consecutive ACC titles outright. Florida State earned at least a share of nine consecutive ACC titles from 1992-2000 but never earned more than three consecutive titles outright. Clemson is attempting to join the 1993-‘96 Florida Gators as the only Power Five conference teams to win four consecutive conference championship games.
6: Is the number of Clemson players who won at least one individual award from the ACC this week. Mitch Hyatt won the Jacobs Blocking Trophy, Trevor Lawrence was Rookie of the Year, Dabo Swinney was Coach of the Year, Travis Etienne was Offensive Player of the Year and Player of the Year, Clelin Ferrell was Defensive Player of the Year and Christian Wilkins won the Jim Tatum Award.
7: Represents the number of times Clemson’s opponents this year failed to reach 100 yards rushing.
13-0: With a win over Pitt in the ACC Championship Game, Clemson will become 13-0 for just the second time in school history, matching the 2015 team that started that season 14-0.
18: Clemson looks to secure its 18th all-time ACC championship. Clemson’s currently 17 ACC titles are already the most in conference history, ahead of the 15 earned by Florida State.
22-0: Clemson attempting to outrush an opponent for the 12th time this season. The Tigers enter this week having outrushed opponents in 22 of their 26 games since 2017 and are 22-0 when outrushing opponents in that time frame.
24: Clemson looks to win its 24th conference championship in school history. The Tigers enter this week with four SIAA championships, two Southern Conference championships and 17 ACC championships to their credit, and their 23 total conference championships are the most among the ACC’s current membership.
43: Is the number of sacks Clemson’s defense has recorded this season. That is tied for second nationally. Clemson is seven sacks short of breaking the 2016 team’s season record of 49.
84.8: That’s the number of rushing yards per game Clemson’s defense is allowing, which ranks second nationally and leads the ACC.