It is Game Day in Death Valley as the Tigers look to continue the road another national championship. No. 1 Clemson hosts No. 7 Miami in an epic ACC showdown.
Location: Memorial Stadium (Death Valley)
Kickoff: 7:30 P.M.
Announcers: Kirk Herbstreit, Chris Fowler, Allison Williams
2020 Record: Clemson 3-0, Miami 3-0
ACC Record: Clemson 2-0, Miami 2-0
Series History: Clemson trails 5-6
Last Meeting: Clemson won 38-3 on December 2, 2017
CLEMSON WELCOMES MIAMI (FLA.) FOR PRIME-TIME TOP 10 TILT
Death Valley will host its first battle of Top 10 teams since 2016 on Saturday, when No. 1 Clemson welcomes No. 7 Miami (Fla.) in front of a national television audience on ABC. Kickoff at Memorial Stadium is scheduled for
7:30 p.m. ET.
Saturday’s game will mark the first meeting between Clemson and Miami since the 2017 ACC Championship Game, when Clemson earned a 38-3 victory to secure the third of Clemson’s five consecutive ACC titles across the last five seasons. That game featured the No. 1-ranked Tigers and the No. 7-ranked Hurricanes, the exact same AP Poll rankings these squads carry into Saturday night’s contest.
Clemson enters Saturday’s game with a 12-9 alltime record in games in which both teams enter ranked in the AP Top 10. That includes a 7-2 mark since the start of the 2016 season. It will represent the fifth such matchup in Death Valley history, including most recently Clemson’s classic 42-36 win against Louisville in 2016 that featured future NFL superstars Deshaun Watson and Lamar Jackson at quarterback.
While much focus is expected to be placed on marquee quarterbacks Trevor Lawrence and D’Eriq King in this contest as well, the game will also feature two defenses that have been among the nation’s most productive behind the line of scrimmage in recent years. Since 2016, Clemson and Miami rank No. 1 and No. 2 in the country, respectively, in both sacks and tackles for loss. Clemson holds a 209-177 lead over Miami in sacks and a 521-494 lead in tackles for loss in that time frame.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR THIS WEEK
– Clemson hosting its first matchup of AP Top 10 teams at Memorial Stadium since 2016 and attempting to improve to 13-9 all-time against AP Top 10 teams. For more on Clemson’s history against Top 10 opponents, see the “Top 10 History” section below.
– Clemson hosting a team ranked in the AP Top 15 at Death Valley for the 10th time under Dabo Swinney. Clemson is 6-3 in those contests, including wins in each of its last four such games since 2015.
– Clemson attempting to improve to 22-3 against AP Top 25 teams since 2015. At 21-3 in those games presently, Clemson’s 87.5 percent winning percentage against AP-ranked opponents in that time frame is the best in the country, ahead of Ohio State (84.0) and Alabama (83.3).
– Clemson attempting to even its all-time series against Miami at 6-6.
– Clemson attempting to win a third straight game against Miami for the first time in school history.
– Clemson and Miami playing for the first time in regular season play since 2015, when Clemson handed Miami its worst loss in program history, a 58-0 road victory for the Tigers. Including postseason play, the game will be the
first between the two teams since Clemson’s 38-3 victory in the 2017 ACC Championship Game in Charlotte.
TOP 10 HISTORY
– Saturday’s contest will represent the 22nd matchup of AP Top 10 teams in Clemson history. Clemson is 12-9 all-time in games when both teams enter ranked in the Top 10 of the AP Poll.
– Sixteen of Clemson’s 21 previous all-time Top 10 matchups have come under Head Coach Dabo Swinney, with Swinney posting a 10-6 record in those contests. Danny Ford went 2-1 in three career Top 10 games, including the Orange Bowl to conclude Clemson’s 1981 national championship season. Frank Howard and Tommy Bowden each lost their lone matchup of Top 10 teams in their Clemson tenures.
– Clemson has won nine of its last 12 games between Top 10 teams in the College Football Playoff era.
– Twelve of the 22 games have been contested at neutral sites, including each of Clemson’s last eight Top 10 clashes. All 12 of the neutral-site Top 10 games were postseason contests, including two ACC Championship Games and 10 bowl games.
BATTLE OF UNDEFEATEDS IN CLEMSON
This week, Clemson will welcome a team with an undefeated record of 3-0 or better to Death Valley for the 16th time since Memorial Stadium opened in 1942. Clemson has handed those opponents their first loss nine times in the previous 15 opportunities.
Of those 15 games, both teams (min. three games played each) have entered a game at Death Valley undefeated six times, with Clemson boasting a 5-1 record in those contests.
COMIN’ TO YOUR CITY
ESPN will broadcast College GameDay from Clemson on Saturday in advance of its prime-time contest against the Hurricanes.
The game will mark Clemson’s 25th appearance in ESPN College GameDay’s featured game. The Tigers enter the contest with a 16-8 record in the presence of College GameDay, including victories in 12 of their last 13 appearances. Prior to Clemson’s loss in the College Football Playoff National Championship, Clemson had won 11 straight games when featured on College GameDay, which had been the nation’s longest streak. College GameDay’s most recent visit to Clemson came in the 2019 season opener, when ESPN and ACC Network aired a special in-stadium edition in advance of Clemson’s 52-14 win against Georgia Tech on a Thursday night. The upcoming broadcast will be Clemson’s first time hosting the traditional Saturday morning show since 2016, prior to No. 5 Clemson’s classic 42-36 victory against No. 3 Louisville.
Robert – Clemson 49, Miami 20
Will – Clemson 45, Miami 31
Gavin – Clemson 38, Miami 24
Game notes courtesy Clemson Sports Information