Going to the College Football Playoff is nothing new to the Clemson Football program. However, Dabo Swinney refuses to ever let it get old.
While two of the four teams in the College Football Playoff where not doing anything to celebrate their accomplishment on Sunday, Clemson and Notre Dame were. Both schools gathered with their players and had a meal Sunday afternoon.
For Clemson, Sunday’s CFP selection marked the fourth straight year it will play in the College Football Playoff. And though it might just seem to be the norm around Clemson these days, Swinney refuses to think of it that way.
“Every year is a new journey, it is a new team. Nothing carries over,” the Tigers’ head coach said to ESPN’s Rece Davis. “It is great what we have done in the past, but you have to prove it and you have to earn it every year. I just think it is important to celebrate your season.”
Clemson (13-0) is celebrating the No. 2 seed in this year’s playoff, which will include a date with No. 3 Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl. The Tigers are making their first appearance in the Cotton Bowl in 79 years.
But Swinney said the Tigers would have still celebrated Sunday even if it was not in the CFP.
“Had we gotten beat last night, we would still be here. You need to know that,” Swinney said. “We still had this meeting planned and we still would have celebrated our season and would have been excited for wherever we would have gone for the postseason.
“I just think it is important that we do not ever lose site of that and that we have great appreciation for this moment. These guys and our staff put in an enormous amount of work and just heart, effort and commitment. They have been grinding since January last year to get here. This is where we are, and it is a big deal. We have pizza. We are low budget here, but pizza still works.”