ORLANDO, Fla. — Dabo Swinney has joined some exclusive company, and he can hardly believe it.
Clemson’s Cheez-It Bowl win over Iowa State on Wednesday inside Camping World Stadium wasn’t just the Tigers’ eighth bowl win in their last 10 tries. It wasn’t just their 10th win of the season or their sixth straight to end it.
For Swinney, it was also the 150th victory of his head coaching career, which, counting the 2008 season in which he was Clemson’s interim head coach, has spanned 14 years so far.
“I really can’t process that, to be honest with you,” Swinney said.
Swinney is one of just three coaches in Football Bowl Subdivision history to win 150 games in the first 15 years of a head coaching career, joining Urban Meyer (165) and Bob Stoops (160). He passed former Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer for the third-most wins in the first 15 years of an FBS coaching career.
Swinney has won 131 of those games over the last 11 seasons, all of which have been of the double-digit win variety. Clemson has averaged 12.7 wins over the last seven seasons, which has included the Tigers’ last two national championships.
Swinney credited the players he’s had over the years for much of his success.
“This game is about players. It’s about players and players buying in,” Swinney said. “I’m incredibly blessed that I can’t even really process that, but the same things that won the first game are the same things that won the
game (Wednesday). The same exact things: Effort, toughness, physicality, no-quit attitude, discipline, belief in self and team, and just uncommon effort.
“I’m just really thankful. It’s really cool to be a part of
something like that.”
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