Now that Thanksgiving Day is almost over, let’s not forget what today has been all about.
Today is a day to be thankful for all the blessings in our lives. Thankful for our faith, families, friends, jobs, our health and so much more. There is truly a lot we should all be thankful for.
Today is also a day to be thankful as a sports fan, especially with football being on.
And since we are talking football, you should be thankful to be a Clemson fan right now and not a South Carolina fan.
There are several reasons, right now, to be thankful for being a Tiger fan as opposed to being a Gamecock fan.
You should be thankful the Tigers have won six straight over the Gamecocks, the most by either school in the series since Clemson won seven straight games from 1934-’40.
You should be thankful for Clemson’s 71-42-4 lead in the all-time series, a game that dates back to 1896.
Clemson fans should also be thankful for the Tigers’ three national championships in football. The Tigers won it all in 1981, 2016 and 2018. South Carolina has never won a national championship in football.
Clemson fans should be thankful for the Tigers’ 25 conference titles, including 19 in the ACC. The Gamecocks have just one conference championship, and that came in 1969 when they were a member of the ACC.
Clemson fans should be thankful for the Tigers’ eight division championships. The Gamecocks have just one, which came in 2010.
Tiger fans should be thankful for Clemson’s 46 bowl game appearances. South Carolina has been to just 23 bowl games and will not be going to a bowl game again this year.
Clemson fans should be thankful for the Tigers’ 25 bowl victories. South Carolina has won just nine bowl games.
Clemson fans should be thankful for the Tigers’ 15 major bowl, BCS or College Football Playoff appearances. The Gamecocks have never played in any of those kind of bowl games.
By the way, Clemson has a 10-5 record in those 15 games.
Clemson fans should be thankful for Jess Neely, who led Clemson to its first bowl game—the 1940 Cotton Bowl—and first Associated Press Final Ranking. The 1939 team finished the year ranked No. 12 in the final AP Poll.
Tigers fans should also be thankful for Neely’s seven-game win streak against the Gamecocks from 1934-’40. It is the longest win streak by either school in the 117-year history of the rivalry.
Tiger fans should be thankful for Frank Howard. He is the first Clemson coach to lead Clemson to national prominence, taking the Tigers to the 1951 and ’57 Orange Bowls and then to the 1959 Sugar Bowl.
And though Howard posted a losing mark against the Gamecocks (14-15-1), he is the one responsible for getting the game moved away from Columbia every year and to a home-and-home series with the game being played in Clemson for the first time in 1960.
Clemson fans should also be thankful for Jerry Butler, who made a leaping, twisting catch to beat the Gamecocks with 41 seconds to go in the 1977 game in Columbia. The play is simply known as “The Catch.” It is also the game that signified the beginning of dominance by Clemson in the series that has carried over to today.
The Tigers are 30-13-1 against the Gamecocks since 1976, including a 16-6 record in Columbia.
Clemson should be thankful for Danny Ford. Ford led Clemson to its first national championship in 1981 and five ACC Championships. The Tigers were 96-29-4 all-time under Ford, which included wins over Ohio State, Notre Dame, Georgia, Nebraska, Penn State and Oklahoma.
Ford’s Clemson teams were 5-2 in bowl games. He was also went 7-3-1 against the Gamecocks.
Tiger fans should be thankful for Tommy Bowden. Not only were his Tigers 7-2 against the Gamecocks, but he was also the coach who was responsible for the Tigers’ 63-17 win in 2003.
Clemson fans should be thankful for Dabo Swinney. He has led the Tigers to two national championships and two national runner-up finishes. His teams have won six ACC Championships and eight division titles. They have played in the ACC Championship Game seven times.
Under Swinney, the Tigers have posted a 137-32 record, which includes wins over Auburn, LSU, Georgia, Oklahoma, Ohio State, Notre Dame and Alabama. Clemson is 10-6 in bowl games under Swinney, including a 2-2 mark in national championship games.
And though Swinney is just 7-5 against the Gamecocks, the Tigers have won the last six in the series.
So, Clemson football fans have a lot to be thankful for, especially since they are not looking for a third head coach in six years.
It is time to get ready for another great Clemson Christmas. The best collection of Clemson ornaments and other fine gifts are available at Clemson Variety & Frame