It is Game Day in Atlanta as the Tigers look to continue the road to Miami and another national championship. No. 1 Clemson visits Georgia Tech as the Tigers look to move to 5-0.
Location: Bobby Dodd Stadium
Announcers: Marty Smith, Dan Orlovsky, Bob Wischusen
2020 Record: Clemson 4-0, Georgia Tech 2-2
ACC Record: Clemson 3-0, Georgia Tech 2-1
Series History: Clemson trails 32-51-2
Last Meeting: Clemson won 52-14 on August 29, 2019
CLEMSON HEADS TO GEORGIA TECH FOR ONLY ROAD GAME OF OCTOBER
Clemson will play its lone road contest of the month of October on Saturday, Oct. 17, when the top-ranked Tigers face the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in Atlanta. Kickoff at Bobby Dodd Stadium is scheduled for noon ET.
The game’s setting may call to mind memories of Clemson’s most recent visit to Atlanta on Sept. 22, 2018. In that game, true freshman quarterback Trevor
Lawrence entered in reserve behind starter Kelly Bryant and completed 13-of-18 passes for 176 yards with four touchdowns in a 49-21 victory against Georgia Tech.
Following the impressive performance, Lawrence was named the team’s starter moving forward and led the team to 25 consecutive victories as the starting quarterback, including two ACC Championships, two College Football playoff appearances, two National Championship Game berths and the 2018 national title. This week, Lawrence, the presumptive Heisman favorite who is 29-1 as a starter, will attempt to become the fourth quarterback in school history to win 30 games as a starter, joining Rodney
Williams, Tajh Boyd and Deshaun Watson, all three of whom are tied for the school record with 32 each.
Saturday’s contest offers one matchup of contrasting strengths. Clemson enters the game tied for second in the country with 18 sacks this season, while Georgia Tech ranks tied for seventh in the nation in sacks allowed (two).
Clemson faced a similar challenge a week earlier, as the Tigers faced a Miami squad that had allowed only three sacks through three games and then racked up two sacks in Miami’s first seven plays and three sacks in the first
16 minutes of play en route to a five-sack performance in the win.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR THIS WEEK
– Clemson attempting to earn its 33rd all-time victory against Georgia Tech. Georgia Tech is one of 11 schools against whom Clemson has earned at least 30 all-time victories (South Carolina, Wake Forest, North Carolina State, Furman, Virginia, North Carolina, Duke, Maryland, Presbyterian and The Citadel). It would mark the second time this season Clemson has earned its
33rd all-time win against an opponent after having moved to 33-5-1 all-time against The Citadel earlier this year.
– Clemson attempting to win its sixth consecutive game against Georgia Tech, dating back to a 43-24 home win in 2015. It would extend Clemson’s longest winning streak in the all-time series, as the current five-game streak already surpassed four-game winning streaks across the 1898-1903 seasons and the 1993-96 campaigns.
– Clemson attempting to win a third straight road game at Georgia Tech for the first time in series history. Clemson has won consecutive games at Georgia Tech five times in school history (1902-03, 1906-07, 1986-88, 2001-03, 2016-18) but has never beaten the Yellow Jackets three consecutive times on the road.
– Clemson attempting to record its 15th all-time road win against Georgia Tech.
– Dabo Swinney attempting to improve to 9-5 all-time against Georgia Tech, including postseason play.
– Every game between the two teams between 1907-74 was held in Atlanta. Clemson’s only wins in those 36 meetings came in 1907, 1936, 1945 and 1969, the last of which was Frank Howard’s final season as head coach. Howard won just twice (1945 and 1969) in his career in Atlanta, but Clemson made the trip every year to help balance the athletic department budget.
Howard was also athletic director his entire time as head coach (1940-69).
– The two teams have played on a neutral site just three times. Clemson won a 23-0 victory in 1898 in Augusta, Ga. and earned a 41-5 win in Greenville,
S.C. in 1899. Georgia Tech won the ACC title game in Tampa in 2009, 39-34.
– The first time Georgia Tech played at Memorial Stadium in Clemson was 1974, a 21-17 Clemson victory. Clemson won that game on a three-yard
touchdown pass from Mike O’Cain (later a head coach at NC State) to All-America tight end Bennie Cunningham with 8:26 left.
– Woodrow Dantzler had one of the best all-around games of his career with 164 yards rushing and 254 yards passing in Clemson’s victory in Atlanta in 2001. He threw for two scores and ran for two, including a 38-yard “Hail Mary Run” on the last play of the first half to cut Tech’s lead to 19-14 at intermission. His 63-yard scoring pass to J.J. McKelvey with 1:58 left
put Clemson ahead by three, but Tech tied the count with a 20-yard field goal with just six seconds left. Dantzler’s “walk-off” 11-yard touchdown in overtime gave Clemson the win.
NO. 1 FOR NO. 1 RECRUITS
As Clemson was in the midst of the winningest decade in school history and tied for the thirdwinningest decade in major college football history,
Head Coach Dabo Swinney would frequently point out that Clemson accomplished its goals by finding the right fits for its program in recruiting rather than chasing recruiting rankings.
Swinney often noted that Clemson accomplished its immense success in his tenure despite never signing the No. 1 recruiting class in the country. That changed in 2020, when ESPN ranked Clemson’s 2020 group as the nation’s top recruiting class. Clemson also recorded its highest rankings in both Rivals (No. 2) and 247 Sports (No. 3) history.
Clemson has signed the nation’s consensus top player in two out of the last three recruiting cycles, welcoming quarterback Trevor Lawrence in 2018 and
defensive tackle Bryan Bresee in 2020.
Clemson is the only team in the country to sign Rivals’ No. 1 recruit twice in a three-year span since Dabo Swinney was named head coach at Clemson.
Signing the No. 1 overall recruit again in 2021 would make Clemson the first school to sign the nation’s top player in back-to-back years in accessible Rivals.com and 247 Sports data.
Clemson and Alabama (two each) are tied for the most No. 1 recruits signed since 2009 per Rivals’ rankings. Clemson and Georgia (two each) are tied for
the most in that span per the 247 Composite.
Robert – Clemson 62, Georgia Tech 13
Will – Clemson 45, Georgia Tech 14
Gavin – Clemson 52, Georgia Tech 14