Though the fans are not particularly fond of noon football games, the players and coaches look at it a little differently, especially when it is on the road.
“I always love a noon game on the road,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said during his weekly teleconference with the media Monday evening.
Swinney loved the news on Monday then when the SEC announced the Clemson at South Carolina game, scheduled for Nov. 30 at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia, will kick off at noon and will be televised by ESPN.
Why does Swinney enjoy noon games on the road?
“You get home earlier,” he said. “When you play those night games on the road, you get home at 5 a.m. or 5:30 and our day is the same on Sunday as coaches. The players get off that day, but as coaches we still have the same day, so it usually takes us a couple of days to recover from that. So, I have always loved a noon game on the road.”
The South Carolina game will mark just the second noon game of the year for the third-ranked Tigers. The first was at Louisville on Oct. 19, a 45-10 victory.
Clemson last played the Gamecocks at noon back in 2015 when Deshaun Watson led the Tigers to a 37-32 win in Columbia to cap Clemson’s first undefeated regular season since 1981.
The Tigers (11-0, 8-0 ACC) have won five straight in their longstanding series against the Gamecocks. They actually began their current run in the series with a 35-17 win over South Carolina with a noon game in 2014. That game was played at Clemson’s Death Valley, of course.
Since 1978, Clemson is 12-6 against the Gamecocks when the game is played at noon or 1 p.m.
“Hey, we will be excited and ready to go,” Swinney said.
The Tigers are going for the sixth straight win in the series, which will mark the first time since its 1934-’40 run that a team has won six straight games. Clemson’s seven straight victories from 1934-’40 is the longest win streak by either team in the history of the rivalry, which dates back to 1896.