Tigers know they’re in for a fight Saturday at The Dome
Dino Babers knows he is going to find out something about his team Saturday when Syracuse hosts top-ranked Clemson at The Dome.
The Orange is coming off an embarrassing 63-20 loss at Maryland last week. They struggled to do anything well from an offensive standpoint early in the game and then they never did anything right on defense.
The Terrapins finished with 650 total yards, including 354 yards on the ground.
“If you got something in you, you are going to respond,” Babers said earlier this week.
Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney feels the same as Babers. He thinks the Orange (1-1, 0-0 ACC) will be ready when the Tigers come to The Dome.
“You can burn that tape,” Swinney said on ESPNU Radio’s Mark Packer Show Thursday.
Swinney said Babers is too good of a coach and the players believe in what they do not to respond from last week’s loss. He expects the Orange play his Clemson team as tough as they have the last two seasons.
“He’s created that attitude and that belief. Last week’s game, you can burn that tape. It got away from them early,” the Tigers’ head man said. “I don’t think they knew a whole lot about Maryland, number one — new coaching staff, a bunch of transfers that had come in there… I don’t think they had a lot of tape on some guys, and then Maryland’s probably better than people think, and then it just kind of got away from them. But this will be a whole different deal with us. We know what we’re getting in to, but we’re looking forward to it.”
Babers knows what he is getting into as well.
Clemson (2-0, 1-0 ACC) has won 19 straight regular season games since it lost to Syracuse in 2017 at The Dome. The Tigers have won 17 straight overall and are coming off a national championship season in which they became the first team since 1897 to go 15-0.
“I look at that team and I think about the Miami Dolphins going undefeated in the national football league and it has only been done once,” Babers said. “You always get a team that gets close and something happens. They get a loss. They get a Super Bowl ring, but they don’t go undefeated.
“What (Clemson) did last year, going undefeated, that was pretty impressive. We have other college football teams go undefeated before, but to me that is a heck of an accomplishment and now they are on their second run with an opportunity to do it again. And I am not quite sure I have ever seen a team do it twice back-to-back. It has been very, very impressive and they have a very high statistical opportunity to do it again.”
Clemson has a long way to go before they can climb the whole mountain, but the climb starts again on Saturday against an Orange team that is going to do everything in its power to end Clemson’s long ACC, regular season and overall win streak.
“Two years ago, we go up there, and they did a great job. Again, our quarterback gets hurt, so he’s out the whole second half. We turn it over… We really played terrible on defense, too. Their quarterback played great, and they just outplayed us. It’s as simple as that,” Swinney said. “And then last year we really got off to a great start, but Trevor gets hurt, and you got your third-team quarterback taking really his first snaps. And then we turned it over three times, including one time on the 10-yard line on first and goal. But defensively we probably played one of our better games last year.
“So, for us, we’ve got to protect our quarterback and we got to take care of the ball. If we can do those two things, then hopefully we can have a little better outing.”
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