ATLANTA — Though Dabo Swinney feels Clemson is on the ROY Bus with everyone else, Alabama head coach Nick Saban believes the Tigers have a bus right next to his team heading into the College Football Playoff at the end of the month.
During the CFP’s first ranking show on Oct. 30, Swinney suggested there is Alabama on the three big buses and then Clemson and the rest of the country are on the ROY—Rest of Y’all—Buses, referring back to his playing days when he was a walk-on Alabama.
However, during the CFP Coaches Press Conference at the College Football Hall of Fame, Saban let it be known that what Clemson has accomplished the last eight seasons, in particular the last four, has not gone unnoticed.
The Tigers (13-0) just wrapped up their second undefeated season in the last four years and have won four straight ACC Championships, while also making the CFP all four years, while winning it all against Bama in 2016.
The Tigers, the No. 2 seed, will take on No. 3 seed Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl as part of the CFP semifinals on Dec. 29.
“I think Clemson has got an outstanding program, an outstanding team,” Saban said, whose team is No. 1 in the CFP. “I think Dabo does a really, really good job on a consistent basis. They have good players, but their players really play well. They’re well-coached. They don’t make a lot of mistakes. They execute well. It’s a difficult preparation when you have to play against them.
“And I think they’ve been one of the most consistent, dominant teams throughout this entire season.”
Clemson is 53-4 in the last four years and just completed its eighth straight 10-win season, the third longest streak in the history of college football. The Tigers are 95-15 since 2011.
“You know, I always say there’s a lot of books written about how to be successful,” Saban said. “There’s not many written on how to stay successful. I have a tremendous amount of respect for the fact that they’ve been able to do it on a consistent basis and be here over and over and over and over and play at that high level all the time and not have any complacency in the program.
“Their players are continuing to try to play to a high level and be the best players that they can be, and I think that a tribute to his coaches and their staff and himself.”