For 111 straight years the Clemson and South Carolina football teams have met on the gridiron. It is the second longest uninterrupted series in college football.
The Tigers and Gamecocks started their colorful rivalry in 1896, Clemson’s first year playing football. Overall, the Palmetto State’s biggest game has been played 117 times between the state’s two biggest universities, with Clemson leading the all-time series 71-42-4.
The two schools have played against each other every year since 1909. But will the COVID-19 pandemic prevent the big game from being played in 2020.
When the Big Ten and the Pac-12 announced they were going to play conferences games only on July 9, reports surfaced the ACC could go down the same road. That opened speculation that the Clemson-Carolina game could be canceled this season.
But Clemson University President Jim Clements and deputy athletic director Graham Neff indicated Clemson, along with the University of South Carolina, is working hard to make sure that does not happen.
“We all are going to say yes to that one,” Clements said Wednesday during a Zoom conference call with the media. “We all want to preserve it. We all want to play it. It is important and we are going to do our best to make sure that happens.”
Clemson, of course, is working with the ACC to make sure it does, while South Carolina is working with the SEC. The two conferences are supposed to announce what their plans are for the 2020 football season by the end of next week, along with the Big 12 Conference.
Reportedly, the SEC reached out to the ACC to make sure they do all they can to assure the two conferences can still play their cross-conference rivalry matchups between Clemson-Carolina, Louisville-Kentucky, Georgia-Georgia Tech and Florida-Florida State.
Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich has been working with South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner to try and keep the game in play if the 2020 college football season is cut short in the ACC and SEC.
“Dan and Ray Tanner, as you know, are former colleagues and are really good friends quite frankly, so they talk very frequently,” Clemson’s Deputy Athletic Director said. “That collaboration within the state is an important part in making that game, in particular, and being they work together, a reality. That is an important active part of football game planning.”
Clemson is looking for its seventh straight win over the Gamecocks this year. A victory would tie Clemson’s series’ record of seven straight wins from 1934-’40. Last year, the Tigers beat South Carolina 38-3 in Columbia.
This year’s game is currently scheduled for Nov. 28 at Memorial Stadium in Clemson.
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