Since 2015, Clemson has played on ESPN’s College GameDay 15 times. The Tigers are 13-2 in those contests, including victories in 11 of its 12 appearances since the start of the 2016 season.
So, when ESPN announced Saturday morning the Clemson at Wake Forest game will be its featured game next week, it was nothing new to the Clemson program. However, there is a new wrinkle to College GameDay this season.
This year, college football’s premiere pregame show will not have any fans in attendance due to the concerns surrounding COVID-19. No fans will be the theme all day long for Wake Forest, who is hosting its first ever College GameDay.
When the Tigers and Demon Deacons kick off next Saturday at 7:30 p.m., there will be no fans in the stadium at Truist Field in Winston-Salem, N.C., either
“It will be different for sure,” Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said. “I have never been a part of that, so it will be a unique experience for all of us. But at the end of the day, it is football.”
Earlier this week players spoke about how the Tigers did not need to worry about playing in front of an empty stadium because it has always been about them bringing their own energy and playing for themselves and to the Clemson standard.
However, as Swinney explained, there will still be a lot of people watching the game.
“The one thing that will be the same is that scoreboard will be lit up,” he said. “The other thing is there will be millions of people watching on TV. So, it will be different, but different has become our normal. Everything has been different, and these guys have been able to handle that.
“It can be a competitive advantage or disadvantage. So, I like where we are. We still have some work to do between now and game time, but we are headed in the right direction from that standpoint.”
Clemson heads to Wake Forest with a 19-game winning streak in ACC competition and a 22-game overall win streak against conference foes, counting the last three ACC Championship Games. The Tigers have not lost an ACC game since 2017.
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