In December of 2008, Dabo Swinney officially took over the Clemson football. While he was at the podium, Swinney said be believed Clemson could win another national championship and would while he was the head coach at Clemson.
A lot of people chuckled. Some questioned whether Swinney should be the head coach, much less lead the program back to national prominence.
Though there were some growing pains at the beginning, Swinney eventually won everyone over and at the end of his third year he delivered Clemson its first ACC Championship in 20 years. By the end of his fifth year, Clemson was back in the top 10 of the national polls and produced back-to-back 11-win seasons, a first for the program.
Two years later, the Tigers played Alabama toe-to-toe in the national championship game and the following year they beat them with a last-second touchdown pass from Deshaun Watson to Hunter Renfrow to win the program its first national title in 35 years.
By year eight of his tenure, Swinney had delivered on his promise and brought a national championship back to Clemson and by the end of his 10th season he delivered a second one, this time with a 44-16 victory over the Crimson Tide.
In the last four years, Clemson and Alabama led the nation with a 55-4 record, which includes two national championships each.
In the College Football Playoff Era, Alabama is 67-6 overall, while Clemson is 65-7, No. 1 and No. 2 respectively.
Here’s a list of the top 10 programs in the last 10 seasons (2009-’18)
- Alabama 127-13
- Ohio State 115-19
- Clemson 112-27
- Oklahoma 105-28
- Stanford 102-32
- Wisconsin 102-33
- Boise State 99-24
- LSU 97-32
- Florida State 97-36
- Oregon 93-33