4 Tigers to represent Clemson in Super Bowl LV

4 Tigers to represent Clemson in Super Bowl LV


4 Tigers to represent Clemson in Super Bowl LV


Clemson is guaranteed to have a Super Bowl Champion from the 2020 football season.

On Sunday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Kansas City Chiefs punched their tickets to Super Bowl LV in Tampa. The Bucs took down the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game, while the Kansas City Chiefs won the AFC Championship to advance the Super Bowl for a second straight year with a victory over the Buffalo Bills.

Clemson is represented well in the world’s biggest game, as four former Tigers will play in Super Bowl LV. Punter Bradley Pinion will represent Clemson for the Buccaneers, while former cornerback Bashaud Breeland, linebacker Dorian O’Daniel and wide receiver Sammy Watkins will represent the Tigers on the Chiefs’ sideline.

Of course, this will be the second straight year Breeland, O’Daniel and Watkins will be in the Super Bowl. They, of course, helped the Chiefs win Super Bowl LIV over San Francisco last year.

This will be the first Super Bowl appearance for Pinion.

If the Chiefs win the Super Bowl on Feb. 7, it will mark the first time in 22 seasons a former Clemson player has won back-to-back Super Bowl titles. Former defensive tackle Trevor Pryce won back-to-back Super Bowls with the Denver Broncos in Super Bowls XXXII and XXXIII. He is also the last Tiger to win multiple Super Bowl titles.

The late Bennie Cunningham helped the Pittsburgh Steelers win back-to-back Super Bowls in 1978 and 1979. (File photo/The Clemson Insider)

The late Bennie Cunningham (Pittsburgh Steelers), Terrence Flagler (San Francisco 49ers) and Pryce are the only former Tigers to win back-to-back Super Bowls. Flagler won two Super Bowls (XXIII and XXIV) as a member of the 49ers, while Cunningham helped the Steelers win Super Bowls XIII and XIV.

Over the years, 30 former Clemson Tigers have been on at least one Super Bowl Championship Team.

There was a stretch for six consecutive seasons from 1984-’89 when at least one former Tiger earned a Super Bowl ring. There was also a stretch from 1996-2000 that at least one Tiger won a Super Bowl every year.

The 1987 Washington Redskins had the most Clemson players on one team to earn a Super Bowl ring. Kicker Obed Ariri, center Jeff Bostic, defensive Dan Benish and tight end K.D. Dunn helped the Redskins beat John Elway and Denver, 42-10, in Super Bowl XXII that afternoon in San Diego.

After Washington’s four, the 1981 San Francisco 49er, 1986 New York Giants and 2019 Kansas City Chiefs had three Clemson players on their Super Bowl winning teams. Wide receiver Dwight Clark, defensive tackle Archie Reese and defensive tackle Jim Stuckey were on the 1981 49ers, who won Super Bowl XVI. Cornerback Ty Davis, linebacker Andy Headen and safety Terry Kinard played for the Giants 1986 team that won Super Bowl XXI.

The first Clemson player to ever win a Super Bowl was running back Bill Mathis in Super Bowl III. He was a part of Joe Namath’s guarantee to beat the NFL’s Baltimore Colts. That’s when the New York Jets were still a part of the American Football League and the NFL-AFL merger had not been completed. The Jets won the game, 16-7.

Mathis passed away this past October. He was 81-years old.

Charlie Waters, who played for the Dallas Cowboys, was the first Clemson player to win multiple Super Bowls. He was a safety for the Cowboys when they beat Miami, 24-3, in Super Bowl V and Denver, 27-10, in Super Bowl XII.

Cunningham helped the Pittsburgh Steelers beat Dallas, 35-31, in Super Bowl XIII and then the Rams, 31-19, in Super Bowl XIV.

Jeff Bostic owns the most Super Bowl rings by a former Clemson player. Bostic helped the Redskins win Super Bowl XVII over Miami, 27-17, Super Bowl XXII over Denver and Super Bowl XXVI, 37-24, over Buffalo.

William Perry was the first former Tiger to win both a college football national championship and a Super Bowl. He was a part of the Tigers’ 1981 National Championship Team and then, as a rookie, he helped the Chicago Bears beat the New England Patriots, 46-10, in Super Bowl XX.

Perry, who played defensive tackle, even ran the ball in from a yard out to become, not only the first Clemson player to score a touchdown in a Super Bowl, but he is the only former Tiger to score one. He was also a freshman on Clemson’s 1981 team that won it all. He was the first player in the Super Bowl era to win a national championship as a true freshman in college and a Super Bowl in his rookie season.

Only six former Clemson players in history have won a college football national championship and a Super Bowl. Perry (Chicago, Super Bowl XX), Andy Headen (Giants, Super Bowl XXI), Terry Kinard (Giants, Super Bowl XXI), Dan Benish (Washington, Super Bowl XXII) and K.D. Dunn (Washington, Super Bowl XXII). They were all members of Clemson’s 1981 National Championship Team.

O’Daniel joined this exclusive group last year. He was a part of the Tigers’ 2016 National Championship team. The linebacker was the first player from Clemson’s most recent national championship teams to win a Super Bowl.

Super Bowl Champion Tigers

Super Bowl III

  • RB Bill Mathis, RB, Jets

Super Bowl VI

  • Charlie Waters, S, Cowboys

Super Bowl IX

  • John McMakin, TE, Steelers

Super Bowl XII

  • Charlie Waters, S, Cowboys

Super Bowl XIII

  • Bennie Cunningham, TE, Steelers

Super Bowl XIV

  • Bennie Cunningham, TE, Steelers

Super Bowl XVI

  • Dwight Clark, WR, 49ers
  • Archie Reese, DT, 49ers
  • Jim Stuckey, DT, 49ers

Super Bowl XVII

  • Jeff Bostic, C, Redskins

Super Bowl XXIX

  • Dwight Clark, WR, 49ers
  • Jim Stuckey, DT, 49ers

Super Bowl XX

  • William Perry, DT, Bears
  • Steve Fuller, QB, Bears

Super Bowl XXI

  • Ty Davis, CB, Giants
  • Andy Headen, LB, Giants
  • Terry Kindard, S, Giants

Super Bowl XXII

  • Obed Ariri, K, Redskins
  • Dan Benish, DT, Redskins
  • Jeff Bostic, C, Redskins
  • D. Dunn, TE, Redskins

Super Bowl XXIII

  • Terrance Flagler, RB, 49ers

Super Bowl XXIV

  • Terrance Flagler, RB, 49ers

Super Bowl XXVI

  • Jeff Bostic, C, Redskins

Super Bowl XXXI

  • Wayne Simmons, LB, Packers

Super Bowl XXXII

  • Trevor Pryce, DT, Broncos

Super Bowl XXXIII

  • Trevor Pryce, DT, Broncos

Super Bowl XXXIV

  • Tony Horne, WR, Rams
  • Dexter McCleon, CB, Rams

Super Bowl XXXV

  • James Trapp, DB, Ravens

Super Bowl XL

  • Chris Gardocki, P, Steelers

Super Bowl XLIII

  • Nick Eason, DT, Steelers

Super Bowl XLIV

  • Anthony Waters, LB, Saints

Super Bowl XLVIII

  • Bryon Maxwell, CB, Seahawks

Super Bowl LIII

  • Dwayne Allen, TE, Patriots

Super Bowl LIV

  • Bashaud Breeland, CB, Chiefs
  • Dorian O’Daniel, LB, Chiefs
  • Sammy Watkins, WR, Chiefs



Nice honor for a former Clemson defensive lineman: Pro Football Focus is unveiling its PFF50, presenting the top 50 players in the NFL heading into the 2021 season. The ranking projects what PFF believes (…)

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