'Leave no doubt'
“Leave no doubt” is a phrase that has become familiar around the Clemson locker room and been frequently used by the players so far this season.
“I just think that’s maybe the nature of who we’ve played, probably more than anything,” Swinney said of the Tigers’ “leave no doubt” mantra during his press conference Tuesday.
Last year against Texas A&M, Clemson escaped College Station with a 28-26 win that required a game-sealing interception from K’Von Wallace of Kellen Mond on a two-point conversion attempt in the final moments. In that contest, the Tigers missed several opportunities to close out the Aggies earlier down the stretch.
So, when Texas A&M came to Death Valley to face Clemson this season on Sept. 7, the Tigers were determined to win in much more convincing fashion – especially after a couple of Aggie players basically guaranteed the week of the game that they would upset the defending national champions.
“I think they probably felt like they left a little doubt out there at Texas A&M,” Swinney said, “and then there was obviously some chatter going into that game — public smack talk, if you will. And I think our guys were like ‘hey, let’s just leave no doubt when this one’s over. Hey, that on us. We left some doubt. Let’s don’t leave any doubt.’”
The Tigers did just that, dominating the Aggies and leaving no doubt they were the better team in a 24-10 victory.
Last week, Clemson set out to leave no doubt again at Syracuse after losing to the Orange in the Carrier Dome two years ago, then narrowly beating the Orange in 2018, thanks to a clutch 20-yard completion from Chase Brice to Tee Higgins on fourth-and-6 that set up the Tigers’ go-ahead touchdown with 41 seconds left.
Clemson did not need last-minute heroics to defeat Syracuse in the Dome last Saturday, with the Tigers “leaving no doubt” in a 41-6 rout.
“They beat us two years ago, and then last year it was ‘oh, we got lucky and whatever,’” Swinney said. “I just think that’s kind of the mindset from some of the leadership of these guys. They want to play well, and when they walk off the field, they don’t want to have a lot of discussion about it. And so far, they’ve been able to do that.”
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