Like any Clemson fan, C.J. Spiller was disappointed with the way the 2019 football season came to an end. However, the former Tiger is also very proud of his alma mater and the way it handled itself following its loss to LSU in the national championship game last week.
“Obviously, it did not end the way all of us as Clemson fans wanted it to end and that is winning the national championship. But at the same time, that did not diminish the season that these guys had,” Spiller said earlier this week on Out of Bounds with Qualk and Kelly on WCCP FM radio in Clemson.
Following an undefeated 2018 season and a national championship with 14 consecutive wins was not an easy feat. Spiller, who was the 2009 ACC Player of the Year for Clemson, pointed out how difficult that is for a team to do when everyone is gunning for them and trying to knock them off.
Clemson is currently the premier program in the ACC, and it can be argued is the best in college football, too. In the last five years, no team has won more games than the Tigers.
Since the start of the 2015 season, the Tigers are 69-5 overall, a .932-win percentage. They have won two national championships and played for it two other times. Twice they have reached the national championship game with 14-0 records and they went 15-0 in 2018, the first college football team to do that in the modern era of the sport.
“I mean, to win 29 straight games, to go undefeated all the way through the regular season and all the way up to the natty, that is a testament to the guys, the coaching staff and just what Coach[Dabo] Swinney has been preaching and what he has been building,” Spiller said. “Unfortunately, they did not win one of the goals he has that is hanging up in the [Allen Reeves Football Complex] and that is to win the closer. Other than that, I thought these guys had a phenomenal season.
“They faced a lot of adversity, but they were able to block out all the outside noise and really just focus in on what was going on inside the walls and just played for each other. Overall, I thought it was a wonderful season outside of losing the natty.”
Clemson will begin the push for another national championship in the coming days when it begins mat drills. Spring practice is tentatively set to start on Feb. 26, and the annual Orange & White Spring game will be on April 4 at Death Valley.
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