12/29: Quick Reaction: Clemson Clobbers ND in Cotton Bowl 30-3

Dallas, TX – The phrase “a game of two halves” is commonly said, but the Cotton Bowl was a game of two quarters. 

The first quarter was a defensive slugfest – neither team could take control despite the numerous opportunities. Clelin Ferrell’s early tackle, forced fumble, and fumble recovery of Ian Book near midfield was the first big play of the game. 

Clemson scored three points off the turnover (40-yd Huegel field goal), and Notre Dame responded by marching to the nine-yard line before settling for a 28-yard Justin Yoon field goal. 

Derion Kendrick returned Yoon’s subsequent kickoff to the fifteen-yard line, where he fumbled the ball. The original ruling was that Notre Dame recovered the ball, but the booth and the big screen in “Jerry’s World” overturned the call and stated that the fumble was out of bounds before Notre Dame recovered the football. 

The call was made by the thinnest of margins – no one knows if it was indisputably out of bounds or not. It was the first in a series of lucky events for the Tigers. Notre Dame suffered various injuries on defense, 

With star cornerback Julian Love absent, Lawrence threw a 52-yard sideline touchdown to fellow freshman Justyn Ross early in the second quarter. The extra point was blocked, and the score was an easily surmountable 9-3 lead for Clemson. When the Tigers next drive ended in a missed 49-yard field goal by Greg Huegel, questions still lingered. 

Clemson’s defense held on long enough to let the offense gain momentum, or Notre Dame buckled under the weight of injuries. Either way you spin it, Trevor Lawrence took control of the game, erased the questions, and never looked back. 

Notre Dame was exposed in the middle of the field by Lawrence’s second touchdown throw to Ross – a 42-yard throw to put Clemson up 16-3 with less than two minutes in the half.

Despite the star power of Lawrence and the passing attack, the ferocious Tiger defense kept Notre Dame in check throughout the first half. For one last time, they stymied the Irish’s scoring hopes and gave Clemson 48 seconds to score. 

When Renfrow’s 32-yard catch had a 15-yard roughing the passer penalty attached to it, the Tigers took their final time-out. They had nineteen yards and nine seconds to work with. 

Tee Higgins dropped a wide open touchdown pass earlier in the game, but he redeemed himself with an incredible catch of a spinning tipped ball in the back of the end zone. 

What was a 9-3 lead with 4:56 left in the first half was now a 23-3 lead entering halftime. Originally a slugfest, the Cotton Bowl was close to becoming a blowout. 

The third quarter was similar to the first – the main difference was the scoreboard. 

The first four drives of the half were fruitless, as Clemson couldn’t extend their lead and Ian Book couldn’t put the offense on his shoulders and come back from the deficit. 

As Notre Dame neared the red zone, Ian Book’s third-and-22 pass was snatched by Nolan Turner, with the sideline erupting for the lightly recruited safety. Three plays later, Etienne broke Wayne Gallman’s Clemson single-season rushing record with a 62-yard rushing touchdown to give Clemson a 30-3 lead with two minutes left in the third quarter.

In an odd and controversial occurance on the last play of the third quarter, Isaiah Simmons’ strip and scoop for a touchdown was ruled ineligible for review because it was labeled forward progress. While the outcome of the game was virtually decided, it was an interesting sequence of events that elicited cheers and boos throughout the stadium.

The fourth quarter was mostly uneventful as the Tigers finished the last fifteen minutes of football to ensure that they would play in the national championship for the third time in four years. 

12/29: Cotton Bowl Halftime Report

Score: Clemson 23 Notre Dame 3

Key Events:

Derion Kendrick’s kickoff return was initially ruled a fumble inside the ten, but it was overturned by a sliver (out of bounds) and thus Notre Dame lost a chance to make a 3-3 tie a 10-3 lead.

The game was a defensive slugfest until Julian Love left the game with an injury – Trevor Lawrence took advantage of his absence and threw a 52-yard touchdown to Justyn Ross, the first of three first-half touchdown throws. Clemson’s last touchdown with two seconds remaining may have been the dagger for the Irish.

Positives:

Trevor Lawrence has moved within the pocket well, evading defenders multiple times to fire off a pass. Justyn Ross has played exceptionally well as his current favorite target, with five catches, 137 yards, and two scores at the half.

Clemson’s defense held on while Clemson’s offense established a rhythm and built a lead – now the Tigers can play with their ears pinned back and even more aggressively.

Areas for Improvement:

Clemson’s pass protection is not doing Trevor Lawrence any favors. Despite his two scoring touchdowns, he has taken major hits that could impact his play in the second half.

The Tigers have made several poor plays on special teams: a barely overturned fumble on a kickoff return, a missed 49-yard field goal, a blocked extra point, and a punting average of 38 yards per punt make for a discouraging special teams performance.

What to Watch:

Clemson’s last touchdown with two seconds left in the half gave the Tigers a major boost into halftime. If Notre Dame wants to close the 20-point lead, they will need to have Julian Love and others healthy, and gain offensive momentum fast.

12/27: Cotton Bowl Preview

Unless Oklahoma wins the national championship, an undefeated team will win the national championship for the first time in the CFP’s five-year history. Furthermore, if Clemson or Alabama wins the champion will be the first 15-0 FBS National Champion. Two of the three undefeated teams will face off in the infamous stadium known as “Jerry’s World” as the Cotton Bowl hosts Clemson and Notre Dame. 

Each team has faced adversity throughout the year, but this will be each team’s toughest test. Notre Dame has the signature win against a highly ranked opponent that Clemson does not have – a 24-17 win against Michigan in the season opener. On the other hand, Clemson played an extra game when they defeated Pittsburgh in the ACC Championship game.

To get the elephant out of the way – it is unlikely that Dexter Lawrence, Braden Galloway, or Zach Giella will play in the Cotton Bowl. Coach Swinney expressed his support for the trio as they tested positive for trace amounts of a banned substance likely found in dietary supplements (unmarked). Losing junior draft prospect Dexter Lawrence will hurt Clemson significantly in the Cotton Bowl, while losing current role players Giella and Galloway will hurt in 2019 as they will likely face a one-year suspension. While the suspensions are unfortunate, Clemson has depth at the defensive tackle position to handle the loss of Lawrence.

Both teams changed quarterbacks midstream from more run-centric players to more pass-centric players and subsequently transformed their offenses into complete threats. Both of senior quarterbacks lead their teams to signature wins (Notre Dame vs Michigan, Clemson at Texas A&M). Notre Dame’s junior Ian Book replaced Brandon Wimbush while Clemson’s true freshman Trevor Lawrence replaced Kelly Bryant. 

Notre Dame runs the ball slightly more than Clemson, and they tend to rely on one running back. Dexter Williams is Notre Dame’s starting running back, and he has averaged almost eighteen attempts per game in his eight games. Clemson utilizes more running backs than Notre Dame, as Etienne only carries the ball 13.5 times per game. 

 In the passing game, both teams are formidable but the storyline is flipped. Clemson passes more than Notre Dame and uses more receivers (eight WRs with ten or more catches), whereas Notre Dame relies on their three main wide receivers more often. What Notre Dame has that Clemson lacks is a true threat from the tight end in the passing game – Alize Mack has 34 catches on the year, which is almost double the seventeen catches Clemson’s tight ends have combined in 2018.

While both defensive and offensive lines for both teams are quality, Clemson holds the advantage in the trenches. Clemson’s incredibly deep defensive line will cause problems for any offensive line, especially one that is good but not elite like Notre Dame’s. 

The Irish have an excellent passing defense, but in order to take advantage of it they will have to make Trevor Lawrence uncomfortable in the pocket (see the first half of the Boston College game). While the Irish have two excellent defensive ends in Julian Okwara and Khalid Kareem, it takes more than two linemen to generate a pass rush for sixty minutes. 

Notre Dame’s back seven is among the best in the nation, with Julian Love as an elite corner and Jerry Tillery as an elite linebacker. Their linebackers are capable of containing Clemson’s run game, and their secondary is a big reason why they boast an elite passing defense. This will be the Tigers’ toughest test on defense, as there is no weak link to exploit.

The pundits and bookies think that Clemson should win this game easily, and on paper it looks as if they should. Championship football is usually close though, and in that case special teams plays a vital role. The Tigers have been up and down on special teams this year, and they need an elite performance on special teams to win if the game is close.  

Oddshark’s projected score is Clemson 45.8 – Notre Dame 31, and Clemson is favored by 12.5 points. The over/under is 56.5, and sixty percent of the bets have been placed on the over. 

Prediction: Clemson 31 Notre Dame 17

Clemson Athletics: Statement on Braden Galloway and Zach Giella

We are disappointed in the results of the appeal and continue to believe our student-athletes did not knowingly ingest any banned substances. The Athletic Department takes seriously its role in the education, testing and enforcement of supplement and performance-enhancing substances. We will continue to adhere to best practices with respect to supplement use by student-athletes and support the position of the NCAA in its testing for PEDs.

Student-athletes at Clemson have taken 329 tests for PEDs since 2014, and all results have been negative except for the trace amounts found during the December 2018 tests. The two current student-athletes were tested prior to the December test, including in April and October of 2018 and again in January and February of 2019, and results came back negative for PEDs. Clemson maintains a rigorous education and testing program, and all supplements are reviewed with Clemson Athletics Nutrition and Sports Medicine as well as the Clemson Compliance Office prior to approval for usage to ensure that no banned substances are included in the products.

In compliance with the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act, Clemson is not authorized to discuss further details of the appeal. Any further questions regarding the appeal should be directed to the student-athletes’ representation.
STATEMENT FROM ATTORNEY:
ROBERT M. ARIAIL, ATTORNEY AT LAW

STATEMENT FROM STUDENT-ATHLETES’ REPRESENTATIVE
The appeals on the penalties imposed on Braden Galloway and Zach Giella to the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards
and Medical Aspects of Sports have been denied, and both student-athletes will be ineligible for the 2019 football season. The
imposed sanctions were the result of a trace amount of Ostarine being detected in both students’ December 2018 NCAA drug
tests.
The student-athletes repeatedly have stated that they have no knowledge of how Ostarine entered their bodies. Their assertions
were confirmed by a polygraph examination taken by each. Both student-athletes had negative test results for prohibited
substances in multiple urine drug screens in April and October of 2018, just before their positive December 2018 test, and again
in both January and February of 2019, just after the December positive test.
Ostarine is a known contaminant of legitimate products. As part of the appeal, the student-athletes presented statements from
scientific experts which confirmed that the very low levels detected in December 2018 were indicative of contamination of
legitimate products. A medical review committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) recently recommended that in
cases such as this, no positive findings be made. Similarly, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) has, in recent months, lifted
the previously imposed suspensions against five athletes who tested positive for trace levels of Ostarine.
The WADA report also noted that in many cases, the identification of the contaminated product is not possible. The students’
scientific expert stated that Ostarine can remain in one’s system for an indeterminate amount of time, making it even more difficult
to pinpoint the source of contamination. In the December 2018 instance, the student-athletes were unable to identify the source
of contamination. As part of the appeal process, an independent lab tested 27 supplements and products, and none came back as
contaminated.
Current NCAA policy places the burden on the student-athlete to explain the cause of the positive test result, even for trace
amounts of a banned substance.
We presented to the Committee convincing evidence that the student-athletes had not voluntarily or intentionally ingested
Ostarine. We also presented evidence that the two primary regulatory agencies for drug testing of athletes, WADA and the
USADA, have concluded that Ostarine is a wide-spread contaminant which is placed in other consumer products without
identifying it on the label. This can produce a very low concentration of Ostarine upon testing. Thus contamination, found in
“very low” or “trace” amount levels makes it impossible to determine whether the Ostarine is the result of intentional use or
ingested through the consumption of a legitimate product contaminated with Ostarine. The issue has forced both agencies to
take action that would remove “very low” or “trace” readings, like in this case, from consideration for sanctions.
The NCAA committee, when presented with this evidence, failed to recognize the existence of the major change described
above. Thus, it proceeded to use the current practice and policies in place and denied the appeals. Change in this area for the
NCAA is inevitable and should have been recognized and applied in this case to reach a fair conclusion. Its failure to do so
resulted in an unfair denial of our appeal.
The student-athletes are in complete agreement that PEDs have no place in collegiate athletics. In this case, it is our strong
belief that no violation occurred. We hope that this case serves as a call for the NCAA to modify its policies on PED testing and
enforcement so that they are consistent with WADA’s proposed rules as well as the USADA.
The student-athletes will have no further comment on this matter. They would like to thank Clemson University for its support
of their appeal.

Clemson Finishes 2019 NFL Draft With Six Total Selections

CLEMSON, S.C. — The Day 3 selections of defensive end Austin Bryant and wide receiver Hunter Renfrow brought Clemson’s total number of draftees in the 2019 NFL Draft to six on Saturday. The Detroit Lions selected Bryant in the fourth round (No. 117 overall), and the Oakland Raiders added Renfrow in the fifth round (No. 149 overall).

Clemson’s six picks in 2019 led the ACC, outpacing Miami (five), Boston College (four) and NC State (four) among conference programs to produce at least four picks this year. Clemson has produced at least five picks in five of the last six drafts, joining Alabama and Ohio State as one of only three programs in the country to do so.

With the six selections in 2019, Head Coach Dabo Swinney has now presided over 57 draft picks during his full-time tenure in Clemson, dating back to the 2009 season. He and Jimbo Fisher are tied for the fourth-most draft picks of any coach in that time frame, and the duo ranks tied for second among head coaches who remain active entering the 2019 season.

Bryant’s selection on Day 3 ended a 40-year drought between picks from Clemson for the Lions, as he became Detroit’s first selection from Clemson since 1979. He was the fourth Clemson defensive lineman selected in 2019, resulting in Clemson’s entire starting defensive line from its 2018 national championship squad being selected within the first 117 picks of the draft. Clemson’s output marked the 10th time in the Common Draft era (since 1967) that a school produced at least four draft picks on the defensive line in a single draft, joining NC State (2018), LSU (2013), Florida (2007), Wisconsin (2005), Miami (2003), Texas (1992), Miami (1990), Notre Dame (1972) and Grambling State (1970).

Renfrow’s selection by the Raiders in the fifth round gave Oakland three players from the same school in a single draft for the first time in the franchise’s history. It represents only the second time Clemson has had three players drafted by the same team in a single draft, joining three selections from Clemson by the New York Giants in 1983. Renfrow joins Clemson’s fraternity of NFL wide receivers, a group that combined for 34 receiving touchdowns in the NFL in 2018, the most by wide receivers from any school.

Updated notes for Clemson’s 2019 draft class as well as updated notes on each individual selection are included below.

CLEMSON NOTES

  • Recorded six selections to give the program at least five picks in five of the last six drafts. Clemson is one of only three schools with five or more picks in at least five of the six most recent drafts (Alabama and Ohio State).
  • Has now placed 29 players in the NFL Draft over the last five years, tied with the 2013-17 drafts for the program’s most prolific five-year stretch since the NFL adopted the seven-round format in 1994.
  • Led the ACC with six selections in 2019, surpassing Miami (five), Boston College (four) and NC State (four) among conference programs with at least four selections.
  • Moved Head Coach Dabo Swinney into a tie for the second-most draft picks of any currently active head coach since his first full season in 2009 (57).
  • Produced three first-round picks for the first time in school history, surpassing the previous record of two, set in the 1979, 1982, 2015 and 2017 NFL Drafts.
  • Produced three players selected as defensive linemen from a single school in a single draft for the first time in NFL Draft history. (Note: In 2006, NC State’s Mario Williams, Manny Lawson and John McCargo went with the Nos. 1, 22 and 26 picks, respectively, though Lawson was officially submitted as a linebacker professionally.)
  • Had a school-record four defensive linemen selected, breaking the previous single-draft school record of three from 2016 (Shaq Lawson, Kevin Dodd and D.J. Reader).
  • Watches its entire starting defensive line from 2018 be drafted in the first four rounds in a span of the draft’s first 117 picks.
  • Joined NC State (2018), LSU (2013), Florida (2007), Wisconsin (2005), Miami (2003), Texas (1992), Miami (1990), Notre Dame (1972) and Grambling State (1970) as the only teams to produce four draft picks on the defensive line in a single draft in the Common Draft era (since 1967),
  • Pushed its total of defensive linemen selected in the Head Coach Dabo Swinney era (since the 2009 NFL Draft) to 17.
  • Has now had multiple defensive linemen selected five times in the last nine drafts (2011, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2019).
  • Produced three drafts picks for the Oakland Raiders in Clelin Ferrell, Trayvon Mullen and Hunter Renfrow, marking the Raiders’ first time selecting three players from the same school in a single draft in franchise history.
  • Watched teammates be selected by the same NFL team in a single draft for the 17th time, joining the 1946, 1951, 1955, 1959, 1960, 1968, 1970, 1972, 1979, 1983, 1991, 1998, 2003, 2015, 2016 and 2017 drafts.
  • Had three players selected by a single team in a single draft for only the second time, joining the New York Giants’ selections of Terry Kinard, Andy Headen and Frank Magwood in the famed 1983 NFL Draft.
  • Had two players (Ferrell and Mullen) selected by the same NFL team in the first two rounds of a draft for the first time in school history.
  • Was one of only three schools to produce three first-round picks in 2019 (Alabama and Mississippi State).
  • Had two players selected in the Top 15 for the first time in a single draft for the third time in school history, joining the 1960 (Lou Cordileone and Harold Olson) and 2017 NFL Drafts (Deshaun Watson and Mike Williams).
  • Matched its school record for picks in the first two rounds, tying the four selections in Rounds 1-2 in 2016 (Shaq Lawson, Kevin Dodd, Mackensie Alexander and T.J. Green). Clemson’s four defensive selections through the first two days of the draft (Rounds 1-3) were the most of any school in 2019.
  • Has now had at least one draft selection in each of the last 17 drafts since 2003, representing the second-longest streak in school history behind a 24-year streak across the 1951-74 NFL Drafts.
  • Has now had at least one first-round selection in six of the last seven NFL Drafts.
  • Produced five picks from its defense (Ferrell, Wilkins, Lawrence, Mullen and Bryant) prior to its first offensive selection (Renfrow). It marks only the third time in the Common Draft era Clemson has had the first five members of its draft class come from the defensive side of the ball, joining the 1999 and 2016 NFL Drafts, both of which featured defensive selections with the first six picks of their respective classes.

CLELIN FERRELL (ROUND 1, NO. 4 OVERALL) NOTES

  • Became the 52nd player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the ninth first-round pick of his tenure.
  • Was selected with the fourth overall pick, tying Banks McFadden (1939), Gaines Adams (2007) and Sammy Watkins (2014) for the highest selection by a Clemson Tiger all-time.
  • Was selected by Raiders Head Coach Jon Gruden, the same head coach who selected Adams at No. 4 overall in 2007 during his tenure with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
  • Became the seventh player selected by the Raiders all-time and the fifth to be selected in the standard NFL Draft (quarterback Lowndes Shingler was selected by the Raiders in the AFL Draft in 1961, and guard James Farr was selected by the Raiders in the NFL Supplemental Draft of USFL Players in 1984).
  • Represents the second first-round pick from Clemson in Raiders history, joining Chester McGlockton (No. 16 overall in 1992).
  • Joined the Raiders after winning the 2018 Ted Hendricks Award as the nation’s best defensive end. The award’s namesake spent nine of his 15 pro seasons with the Raiders. Ferrell is the first Hendricks Award winner selected by the Raiders since the award’s inception in 2002.
  • Was the ninth Clemson defensive lineman all-time to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft (Jim Stuckey, Jeff Bryant, William Perry, Chester McGlockton, Trevor Pryce, Gaines Adams, Vic Beasley, Shaq Lawson).
  • Represented Clemson’s 30th first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time, dating back to Banks McFadden’s selection by the NFL’s Brooklyn Dodgers with the fourth overall pick in the 1940 NFL Draft.
  • Became the third defensive lineman from Clemson selected in the first round since the 2015 NFL Draft (Vic Beasley in 2015; Shaq Lawson in 2016).
  • Was the first edge rusher selected by the Raiders in the first round of the NFL Draft since the franchise selected four-time Pro Bowler Khalil Mack with the fifth overall pick of the 2014 NFL Draft.
  • Will play for Raiders Defensive Line Coach Brentson Buckner, who was an All-ACC honoree at Clemson prior to being drafted in the 1994 NFL Draft.
  • Became the fourth No. 4 overall selection in Raider history, joining Amari Cooper (2015), Darren McFadden (2008) and Charles Woodson (1998), who combined for 12 Pro Bowls as of the conclusion of the 2018 NFL season.

CHRISTIAN WILKINS (ROUND 1, NO. 13 OVERALL) NOTES

  • Became the 53rd player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 10th first-round pick of his tenure.
  • Marked the Dolphins’ ninth all-time selection from Clemson, joining Don Testerman (1976), William Devane (1984), Robert O’Neal (1993), Lorenzo Bromell (1998), Jim Bundren (1998), Phillip Merling (2008), Chris Clemons (2009) and Cordrea Tankersley (2017).
  • Surpassed Merling (No. 32 overall) as the highest pick from Clemson in Dolphins draft history and becomes Clemson’s first first-round pick in that franchise’s annals.
  • Ranked as the third-highest defensive lineman selected by the Dolphins since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, trailing Dion Jordan (No. 3 in 2013) and Marco Coleman (No. 12 in 1992).
  • Will play for Dolphins Defensive Line Coach Marion Hobby, who coached Wilkins from 2015-16 while serving as Clemson’s Co-Defensive Coordinator/Defensive Ends Coach from 2011-16.
  • Became the fourth defensive lineman from Clemson selected in the first round since the 2015 NFL Draft (Vic Beasley in 2015; Shaq Lawson in 2016; Ferrell in 2019).
  • Was the 10th Clemson defensive lineman all-time to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft (Jim Stuckey, Jeff Bryant, William Perry, Chester McGlockton, Trevor Pryce, Gaines Adams, Vic Beasley, Shaq Lawson, Clelin Ferrell).
  • Represented Clemson’s 31st first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time.
  • Marked Clemson’s second selection at No. 13 overall all-time, joining Harold Olson’s selection by the St. Louis Cardinals at No. 13 in 1960.
  • Became the sixth Campbell Trophy recipient to be taken in the first round of the NFL Draft, joining Alex Mack (California), Peyton Manning (Tennessee), Chad Pennington (Marshall), Matt Stinchcomb (Georgia) and Tim Tebow (Florida).

DEXTER LAWRENCE (ROUND 1, NO. 17 OVERALL) NOTES

  • Became the 54th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 11th first-round pick of his tenure.
  • Was the 18th Clemson player selected by the Giants in the NFL Draft all-time, moving out of a tie with the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most of any NFL franchise.
  • Was the third first-round pick from Clemson in Giants’ draft history, joining Lou Cordileone (No. 12 overall in 1960) and Terry Kinard (No. 10 in 1983).
  • Represented the Giants’ highest selection along the defensive line since drafting the two-time Pro Bowler Jason Pierre-Paul with the No. 15 overall pick in 2010.
  • Became the fifth defensive lineman from Clemson selected in the first round since the 2015 NFL Draft (Vic Beasley in 2015; Shaq Lawson in 2016; Ferrell and Wilkins in 2019)
  • Was the 11th Clemson defensive lineman all-time to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft (Jim Stuckey, Jeff Bryant, William Perry, Chester McGlockton, Trevor Pryce, Gaines Adams, Vic Beasley, Shaq Lawson, Clelin Ferrell, Christian Wilkins).
  • Represented Clemson’s 32nd first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time.
  • Marked Clemson’s first selection at No. 17 overall all-time.

TRAYVON MULLEN (ROUND 2, NO. 40 OVERALL) NOTES

  • Became the 55th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the eighth second-round pick of Swinney’s tenure. All eight second-round picks under Swinney have come from the defensive side of the ball.
  • Became the 13th defensive back selected in the Swinney era dating back to the 2009 NFL Draft.
  • Joined Marcus Gilchrist (2011), Mackenzie Alexander (2016) and T.J. Green (2016) as one of four defensive backs under Swinney to be selected in the second round of the NFL Draft.
  • At the No. 40 overall selection, was Clemson’s highest defensive back selected in a draft since Tye Hill’s selection at No. 15 overall in 2006.
  • Pushed Clemson’s current stretch of drafts with at least one defensive back selected to nine of the last 11 drafts.
  • Represented the second Clemson player selected by the Raiders in the 2019 NFL Draft, joining DE Clelin Ferrell, marking the first time the Raiders had taken multiple Clemson products in a single draft.
  • Was the eighth Clemson player selected by the Raiders all-time.
  • Joined Don Willis (1939) and Dexter McCleon (1997) as one of three Clemson players selected No. 40 overall all-time. Willis was the first draft pick in Clemson history, and McCleon played 10 NFL seasons that included a victory in Super Bowl XXXIV.

AUSTIN BRYANT (ROUND 4, NO. 117 OVERALL) NOTES

  • Became the 56th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 12th fourth-round pick of his tenure.
  • Was the fourth Clemson defensive lineman selected in the 2019 NFL Draft, breaking the school’s single-draft school record of three set in 2016 (Shaq Lawson, Kevin Dodd and D.J. Reader).
  • Was the sixth Clemson player selected by the Lions all-time, joining Joe Blalock, Dreher Gaskins, Dick Marazza, Dave Thompson and Jonathan Brooks.
  • Ended a 40-year drought of Clemson picks by the Lions, as he was Detroit’s first selection from Clemson since Jonathan Brooks in the fourth round of the 1979 NFL Draft.
  • Joined Vance Hammond (1991) and Curtis Whitley (1992) as one of three Clemson players to go No. 117 overall all-time.
  • Gave the Clemson defense at least one fourth-round pick in six of the last eight drafts, joining Coty Sensabaugh (2012), Malliciah Goodman (2013), Bashaud Breeland (2014), B.J. Goodson (2016) and Carlos Watkins (2017).

HUNTER RENFROW (ROUND 5, NO. 149 OVERALL) NOTES

  • Became the 57th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 10th fifth-round pick of his tenure.
  • Was the ninth wide receiver in Swinney’s head coaching tenure to be drafted into the NFL. He is the 13th Clemson wide receiver under Swinney’s guidance to be drafted including Swinney’s stint as wide receivers coach from 2003-08.
  • Represents Clemson’s eighth draft pick at wide receiver since 2013. Clemson’s seven selections at wide receiver since the 2013 NFL Draft were the most in the country entering the 2019 NFL Draft.
  • Gave Clemson a draft pick at wide receiver for a fourth straight year, the longest such stretch in school history.
  • Was the third Clemson player selected by the Raiders in the 2019 NFL Draft, joining DE Clelin Ferrell and CB Trayvon Mullen, adding to the first instance of the Raiders selecting multiple Clemson products in a single draft.
  • Was the ninth Clemson player selected by the Raiders all-time, including an AFL Draft and Supplemental Draft selection. The Raiders had gone nine years since their last selection from Clemson (Jacoby Ford in 2010) prior to taking three Tigers in 48 hours in the 2019 NFL Draft.
  • Represented the third Clemson player selected by the Raiders in the 2019 NFL Draft, marking only the second time in history that a team had selected three players in a single draft (1983).
  • Was the first receiver selected by the Raiders in the first five rounds of a draft since picking three-time Pro Bowler Amari Cooper in the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft.
  • Snapped a streak in which Clemson’s defense was responsible for the program’s first five selections in the 2019 NFL Draft by becoming the school’s first offensive representative in the draft class.
  • Was Clemson’s first selection at No. 149 overall all-time.
  • Became the first Clemson player who began his career as a walk-on to be drafted into the NFL since the Atlanta Falcons selected Reggie Pleasant in the sixth round of the 1985 NFL Draft.

Clemson, Radakovich Agree to Contract Extension

Clemson players and head coach Dabo Swinney take part in a press conference at AT&T Stadium on December 24, 2018, one of the events leading up to the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic. The Clemson Tigers and Notre Dame Fighting Irish will face off on December 29, 2018. Photo by Ian Halperin/CBAA

Director of Athletics Dan Radakovich and Clemson University agreed to a contract extension that runs through June 30, 2024, the university announced on Friday. Radakovich has served in the role since 2012, and his tenure has been marked by growth in a number of areas.

“Dan’s commitment to developing our student-athletes continues to result in outstanding achievements on the field and in the classroom,” Clemson president Dr. Jim Clements said. “In my opinion he’s the best athletic director in the country, and I’m excited to have Dan lead our athletic department into the future.”

Radakovich was named Sports Business Journal’s Athletic Director of the Year in 2017 after the football program claimed the first of its two national championships in the past three years. In addition, men’s basketball made a run to the Sweet 16 in 2018, and head Coach Amanda Butler led women’s basketball to the NCAA second round in her first season in 2019.

“I am grateful to President Clements and the Board of Trustees for this commitment,” said Radakovich. “Certainly, their leadership plays an integral role in the success of the Athletic Department. Clemson is already among the elite nationally in a number of areas, and we’ll continue to work tirelessly to provide opportunities for our programs to achieve at the highest level, on and off the field.”

In 2018, the department saw its highest cumulative GPA on record and set a school record with seven programs earning NCAA Academic Progress Rate awards.

Department revenue has nearly doubled over the past six years, from $69 million in FY14 to more than $120 million in 2019. Clemson also agreed a new 10-year, $58 million partnership with Nike that spans all sports.

Since taking over in 2012, more than $180 million of capital projects have been completed, headlined by a rebuilt Littlejohn Coliseum, the Reeves Football Operations Complex, Duckworth Family Tennis Center, Baseball Operations facility and the new softball stadium, set to open in 2020.

TERM SHEET – Dan Radakovich

Director of Athletics

TERMS ARE SUBJECT TO THE APPROVAL OF THE CLEMSON UNIVERSITY BOARD OF TRUSTEES COMPENSATION COMMITTEE

 

Term June 30, 2024 (end of FY24)
Signing Incentive $50,000 to be paid prior to July 1, 2019
Compensation

 

Year Base Supplemental Deferred Total Compensation
18/19 $300,000 $496,500 $178,500 $975,000
19/20 $300,000 $721,500 $178,500 $1,200,000
20/21 $300,000 $771,500 $178,500 $1,250,000
21/22 $300,000 $821,500 $178,500 $1,300,000
22/23 $300,000 $871,500 $178,500 $1,350,000
23/24 $300,000 $921,500 $178,500 $1,400,000
Notes Not eligible for COLA/University comp plan increases.
Performance Incentive Bonus Amount
CFP Final $20,000
CFP New Years 6 Bowl (includes CFP semi) $30,000
Other Bowl (if 8 win regular season) $25,000
MBB or WBB NCAA Invite $20,000
NCAA/National Team Championship $15,000 ea
ACC Team Championship $12,500 ea
Academic Performance $5,000
IPTAY Fundraising ≥ $45M $10,000
Max (cap) per year $250,000
*Payment of annual bonuses contingent upon a reasonable determination by the President on or by August 15 of each year, that in the preceding fiscal year the financial strength of the Athletics enterprise has been maintained or strengthened.
Fringe Benefits Standard University unclassified employee package including state retirement benefits; Additional Clemson Athletics employee benefits including health insurance premium provided, life insurance policy provided. Benefits subject to applicable tax treatment per University policies. Employee not eligible for state or university COLA/compensation increases. If employee separates (w/o cause) from the University on or after June 30, 2020 (with continuous service), and does not accept another position which offers comparable health benefits, Athletic Department will continue to pay employee portion of health insurance until employee becomes eligible for Medicare.
Automobiles Two (2) full-sized vehicles under dealer program plus insurance and taxes; replaced every 12 months or two (2) monthly stipends ($1,000 ea.).
Tickets Football: 8 tickets for home, away games & post-season.

Basketball: 4 tickets to home games and 4 tickets to ACC Tournament

Baseball: 4 tickets to home and postseason play

Other University Events: up to 4 tickets as requested and available

Football Suite: 12 seat suite for A.D. development purposes

 

Note tickets subject to IRS regulations concerning tax treatment.

Country Club Membership Family membership at the Walker Course including initiation fee and monthly dues (excludes non business food and beverage charges).
Buyout (w/o cause) Employer Terminates Prior to July 1, 2022: $1,800,000 w/ no mitigation

After July 1, 2022: $1,400,000 w/ no mitigation

Employee Terminates $150,000  if take collegiate A.D. job
Termination for Cause

 

For Cause provisions to be delineated in contract.

No buyout, all future payments and benefits forfeited except for vested deferred compensation and vested state retirement, if any.

Outside Income

 

Activities which earn outside income subject to approval by the President and must be consistent with NCAA regulations including annual disclosure requirements.
Duties and Responsibilities Director of Athletics

(Specifics delineated in contract)

 

The parties agree to the above terms to be effective as of the Start Date and agree that they will be incorporated into a mutually reasonably agreeable employment contract to be executed within 180 days of the Start Date.

 

 

Accepted: ____________________________________ Date: __________________

Dan Radakovich

 

Approved: ____________________________________ Date: __________________

Jim Clements

 

 

 

DABO SWINNEY – TERM SHEET SUMMARY – 4/26/2019

 

 

Clemson, Swinney Agree to New Ten-Year Commitment

CLEMSON, S.C. —Clemson Head Football Coach Dabo Swinney and the University have agreed to a new Ten-year contract through 2028, it was announced today by Director of Athletics Dan Radakovich. Terms of the contract were approved earlier today by the Clemson University Board of Trustees’ Compensation Committee.

“Dabo’s leadership of our football program has brought value, exposure and unprecedented levels of success not only to our athletics program but to the entire university,” Radakovich said. “He has demonstrated the ability to consistently achieve at the highest level on and off the field, and he has done so with a commitment to integrity and core principles. This new agreement is evidence of Clemson’s steadfast commitment to Dabo and to our football program, and we are thrilled that he and his family will be a part of our community for years to come.”

Swinney guided the Tigers to two of the last three national championships, including a 44-16 victory over Alabama in the most recent College Football Playoff National Championship played in January. The 2018 team was the first program in the modern era to finish a season 15-0, and Swinney stands as one of only two active coaches in the country with multiple FBS national championships to his credit.

“I am grateful and humbled by the incredible commitment Clemson has made to me, my family and our football program,” Swinney said. “For more than a decade, we have given our all to provide this world-class university and our incredible fans the championship football program they deserve – to live up to Best is the Standard. With this contract, we make a collective statement that we intend to continue pursuing championships and developing total student-athletes for years to come. Our sustained continuity in vision, people and culture has been a key ingredient to our success, on- and off-the field. I am thankful for the leadership we have at Clemson and appreciate all they do for Clemson Football. I am truly blessed to be your Head Football Coach.”

During Swinney’s tenure, the success of Clemson football student-athletes transcends the titles on the field. Twenty-six players on the 2018 National Championship game roster competed having already earned a degree. Over his ten full seasons as head coach, over 97% of senior lettermen earned a degree and his 2018 squad set program records for cumulative team GPA and for the number of student-athletes who earned a GPA of 3.0 or above. Their efforts in the classroom earned the program the American Football Coaches Association Academic Achievement Award for the first time in school history.

“The football program, under the direction of Coach Swinney, has been a great source of pride for the Clemson Family,” said President Jim Clements. “The success of the football program has helped to elevate the entire profile of the institution. We’ve seen all-time highs in applications, fundraising and numerous other areas. This is in part due to the national visibility that our football team’s success has brought to the university. We are excited to have Coach Swinney and his family with us for at least another decade.”

In addition to earning the 2018 ACC Coach of the Year and the Woody Hayes Award as national coach of the year from the Touchdown Club of Columbus, Swinney captured the Paul “Bear” Bryant Award for the third time, becoming the first three-time honoree in the award’s history. During the last four seasons of the program’s active eight-year streak of ten-win seasons, Swinney’s Tigers have captured four consecutive outright ACC titles (the first program ever to do so) and four consecutive College Football Playoff berths, while tying for the national lead with 55 wins in that four-year span.

Swinney is entering his 17th overall season at Clemson, having completed five full seasons as an assistant coach from 2003-07, serving as the interim head coach in 2008 and ten full seasons as head coach from 2009-18. His 116 head coaching wins at Clemson rank second all-time and place him as one of only two football coaches in school history, along with College Football Hall-of-Famer Frank Howard, to reach the century mark in the category.

Swinney and his wife, Kathleen, have been active in the Clemson community and throughout the state of South Carolina during his tenure. Since 2009, the Swinney family and Dabo’s All In Team Foundation have given more than $4 million back to communities and programs in the state.

Tigers Make History On Day 1 Of 2019 NFL Draft

NASHVILLE — Clemson made school and NFL Draft history on the first night of the 2019 NFL Draft, featuring the selections of defensive end Clelin Ferrell to the Oakland Raiders at No. 4 overall, defensive tackle Christian Wilkins to the Miami Dolphins at No. 13 and defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence to the New York Giants at No. 17. The output marked the first time Clemson had produced three first-round picks in a single draft.

 

The selections also marked the first time in NFL Draft history that a single school produced three players selected as defensive linemen in a single draft. The only other draft to feature three college defensive linemen from a single school in the first round was in 2006, when NC State’s Mario Williams, Manny Lawson and John McCargo went with the Nos. 1, 22 and 26 picks, respectively, though Lawson was officially submitted as a linebacker.

 

The night in Nashville started with a bang, as the Oakland Raiders selected Ferrell with the fourth overall pick. Ferrell’s selection at No. 4 tied for the highest selection from Clemson all-time, matching the fourth overall selections of Banks McFadden (1939), Gaines Adams (2007) and Sammy Watkins (2014).

 

Wilkins was next off the board to Miami at No. 13, becoming the first player from Clemson to be selected in the first round in Dolphins history. Of Clemson’s nine all-time selections by Miami, each of the last four (DE Phillip Merling, S Chris Clemons, CB Cordrea Tankersley and Wilkins) have come from the defensive side of the ball.

 

Lawrence became Clemson’s historic third selection of the evening at No. 17 overall. Lawrence’s selection continued a pipeline of Clemson players being drafted by the Giants, representing the franchise’s 18th selection from Clemson all-time, moving past the Pittsburgh Steelers (17) for the most of any franchise.

 

With the three selections, Clemson has now had 54 players selected since Dabo Swinney became head coach in December of 2008. With six rounds still remaining, the 2019 draft already represents the 12th consecutive year Clemson has had at least three players selected in the NFL Draft.

CLEMSON NOTES

  • Produced three first-round picks for the first time in school history, surpassing the previous record of two, set in the 1979, 1982, 2015 and 2017 NFL Drafts.
  • Responsible for producing three players selected as defensive linemen from a single school in a single draft for the first time in NFL Draft history. (Note: In 2006, NC State’s Mario Williams, Manny Lawson and John McCargo went with the Nos. 1, 22 and 26 picks, respectively, though Lawson was officially submitted as a linebacker professionally.)
  • Pushed its total of defensive linemen selected in the Head Coach Dabo Swinney era (since the 2009 NFL Draft) to 16.
  • Has now had multiple defensive linemen selected five times in the last nine drafts (2011, 2012, 2015, 2016, 2019).
  • Was one of only three schools to produce three first-round picks in 2019 (Alabama and Mississippi State).
  • Had two players selected in the Top 15 for the first time in a single draft for the third time in school history, joining the 1960 (Lou Cordileone and Harold Olson) and
  • Has now had at least one draft selection in each of the last 17 drafts since 2003, representing the second-longest streak in school history behind a 24-year streak across the 1951-74 NFL Drafts.
  • Has now had at least one first-round selection in six of the last seven NFL Drafts.

CLELIN FERRELL NOTES

  • Became the 52nd player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the ninth first-round pick of his tenure.
  • Was selected with the fourth overall pick, tying Banks McFadden (1939), Gaines Adams (2007) and Sammy Watkins (2014) for the highest selection by a Clemson Tiger all-time.
  • Was selected by Raiders Head Coach Jon Gruden, the same head coach who selected Adams at No. 4 overall in 2007 during his tenure with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
  • Became the seventh player selected by the Raiders all-time and the fifth to be selected in the standard NFL Draft (quarterback Lowndes Shingler was selected by the Raiders in the AFL Draft in 1961, and guard James Farr was selected by the Raiders in the NFL Supplemental Draft of USFL Players in 1984).
  • Represents the second first-round pick from Clemson in Raiders history, joining Chester McGlockton (No. 16 overall in 1992).
  • Was the ninth Clemson defensive lineman all-time to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft (Jim Stuckey, Jeff Bryant, William Perry, Chester McGlockton, Trevor Pryce, Gaines Adams, Vic Beasley, Shaq Lawson).
  • Represents Clemson’s 30th first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time, dating back to Banks McFadden’s selection by the NFL’s Brooklyn Dodgers with the fourth overall pick in the 1940 NFL Draft.
  • Became the third defensive lineman from Clemson selected in the first round since the 2015 NFL Draft (Vic Beasley in 2015; Shaq Lawson in 2016).

CHRISTIAN WILKINS NOTES

  • Became the 53rd player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 10th first-round pick of his tenure.
  • Marks the Dolphins’ ninth all-time selection from Clemson, joining Don Testerman (1976), William Devane (1984), Robert O’Neal (1993), Lorenzo Bromell (1998), Jim Bundren (1998), Phillip Merling (2008), Chris Clemons (2009) and Cordrea Tankersley (2017).
  • Surpasses Merling (No. 32 overall) as the highest pick from Clemson in Dolphins draft history and becomes Clemson’s first first-round pick in that franchise’s annals.
  • Became the fourth defensive lineman from Clemson selected in the first round since the 2015 NFL Draft (Vic Beasley in 2015; Shaq Lawson in 2016; Ferrell in 2019).
  • Was the 10th Clemson defensive lineman all-time to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft (Jim Stuckey, Jeff Bryant, William Perry, Chester McGlockton, Trevor Pryce, Gaines Adams, Vic Beasley, Shaq Lawson, Clelin Ferrell).
  • Represents Clemson’s 31st first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time.

DEXTER LAWRENCE NOTES

  • Became the 54th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 11th first-round pick of his tenure.
  • Is the 18th Clemson player selected by the Giants in the NFL Draft all-time, moving out of a tie with the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most of any NFL franchise.
  • Is the third first-round pick from Clemson in Giants’ draft history, joining Lou Cordileone (No. 12 overall in 1960) and Terry Kinard (No. 10 in 1983).
  • Became the fifth defensive lineman from Clemson selected in the first round since the 2015 NFL Draft (Vic Beasley in 2015; Shaq Lawson in 2016; Ferrell and Wilkins in 2019)
  • Was the 11th Clemson defensive lineman all-time to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft (Jim Stuckey, Jeff Bryant, William Perry, Chester McGlockton, Trevor Pryce, Gaines Adams, Vic Beasley, Shaq Lawson, Clelin Ferrell, Christian Wilkins).
  • Represents Clemson’s 32nd first-round pick in the NFL Draft all-time.

Tavien Feaster Enters Transfer Portal

CLEMSON, S.C. — Running back Tavien Feaster has entered the NCAA transfer portal and intends to transfer from Clemson University, Head Coach Dabo Swinney confirmed on Wednesday.

 

“Tavien has informed us that he has entered the transfer portal with the intention to finish his degree at Clemson by August and continue his college career somewhere else,” Swinney said. “We appreciate Tavien for everything he brought to Clemson University and our program and we wish him nothing but the best moving forward.”

 

Feaster, a native of Spartanburg, S.C., appeared in 41 career games at Clemson with 11 starts, compiling 1,330 career rushing yards and 15 touchdowns on 222 carries, as well as 183 receiving yards and one touchdown on 23 receptions. He exits the program ranked second in Clemson history in career yards per carry (5.99) among qualified rushers, trailing only current Clemson running back Travis Etienne (7.79).

4/6: Clemson Wins Spring Game, White Defeats Orange 30-10

Clemson, SC – From the perspective of coaches, it’s just another spring practice that serves as a major recruiting weekend. But spring games aren’t normal practices and Clemson’s spring game isn’t normal. This was nothing less than a look at the next Tiger team combined with an excellent recruiting event to build for the future.

 

It can be the main Clemson game a family goes to in a year, a taste of Clemson football before the dog days of summer, or just another chance to watch incredible talents like Trevor Lawrence and company play football – even if it means sitting in the upper deck.

 

Whatever the reason, 60,000 fans traveled to Clemson to send off the 2018 Tigers and welcome in the 2019 Tigers.

 

Kirk Herbstreit interviewed Coach Swinney on the field while Marty Smith interviewed former players, all on ESPN2 for the world to see. Awards were handed out in the pre-game festivities, championship rings were awarded at halftime, and Eric Mac Lain was announced as the first analyst for the new ACC Network.

 

It wasn’t Heisman favorite Trevor Lawrence’s Orange team who struck first, but rather Chase Brice’s white team. The White Team drove 95 yards to score in the middle of the first quarter as Chase Brice’s last three passes (32, 23, 15) accounted for the last 70 yards and the score on the drive. Lawrence’s Orange team scored early in the second quarter with their own 12 play, 70-yard drive to tie the score.

 

The rest of the half favored the White team, as Steven Sawicki kicked a 25-yard field goal and Darien Rencher took advantage of an Orange turnover near their own end zone, running three and nine yards for the touchdown. Lawrence’s orange team scored on a 30-yard field goal by BT Potter to end the half (17 White 10 Orange).

 

Not only does Clemson have two excellent quarterbacks, but “WR-U” is here to stay – again. Highly touted freshmen Frank Ladson and Joseph Ngata combined for over a dozen targets and looked right at home in the offense.

 

That doesn’t include incumbent stars Tee Higgins and Justyn Ross, or older veterans like Diondre Overton (out for the game). For yet another year, Clemson legitimately has half a dozen wide receivers that could start for some ACC teams.

 

While the defense lost eight starters this year, replacements young and old performed well in their quest to earn playing time on the 2019 team. Senior linebacker Shaq Smith and freshman defensive back Sheridan Jones jumped out on the stat sheet.

 

Trevor Lawrence lost the first game of his college career as the White bested the Orange. Luckily, it was the Spring game against his own team where the price of losing is only a Monday Morning workout.

 

Clemson beat Clemson (in the spring game), but Clemson is on top of college football and they aren’t slowing down – watch out college football.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clemson and Georgia Tech to Play 2022ACC Opener in Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game

Tigers-Yellow Jackets rivalry to be showcased in prime time ESPN Monday night matchup.

 

ATLANTA (Feb. 26, 2019) – A rare prime time Monday night game of regional rivals will cap off the opening weekend of the 2022 college football season when Clemson faces Georgia Tech to open ACC play in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game.

 

This will mark the first time two teams from the same conference have met in a Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in the event’s history.

 

The game will be played, Monday, Sept. 5, 2022 in Mercedes-Benz Stadium as part of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game weekend. An exact kick time will be finalized at a later date.

 

“Teams from the ACC have been a big part of our game’s success over the years, and hosting one of the conference’s most exciting rivalries will make it that much sweeter,” said Bob Somers, Peach Bowl, Inc. chairman.

 

The 2022 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game will mark the 87th time Clemson and Georgia Tech have faced off on the gridiron. Georgia Tech currently holds a 50-31-2 advantage over Clemson all-time, but the Tigers have won the last four meetings between the two programs.

 

“Capping off opening weekend and opening conference play with a rivalry like this will put an exclamation point on the start of the season,” Peach Bowl, Inc. CEO and President Gary Stokan said. “We certainly want to express our appreciation to Todd Stansbury and Geoff Collins for their commitment to our game. Big matchups like this are what make Atlanta the capital of college football.”

 

Clemson will be making its third appearance in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game against the Yellow Jackets. The Tigers fell 34-10 to Alabama in the inaugural Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in 2008, but later defeated Auburn 26-19 in the 2012 game. Clemson is also scheduled to open the season in Atlanta against the Georgia Bulldogs in the 2024 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game.

 

“We look forward to the opportunity to play against Georgia Tech in Mercedes-Benz Stadium in 2022,” Clemson Director of Athletics Dan Radakovich said. “We are excited for one of our conference road games to be featured as a Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in such a first-class venue.”

 

The 2022 Clemson-Georgia Tech matchup will mark the Yellow Jackets’ second appearance in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game. Georgia Tech previously fell 42-41 in two overtimes to Tennessee in the 2017 game.

 

“We’re honored and excited to return to the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in 2022,” said Todd Stansbury, Georgia Tech director of athletics. “The Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game has become one of college football’s biggest and most anticipated events, and it has even more meaning for us to be a part of it right here in our hometown of Atlanta. It will be special for our student-athletes and fans to open the 2022 season in the national spotlight and one of sports’ most-recognizable stages, Mercedes-Benz Stadium.”

 

The teams will battle for The Old Leather Helmet Trophy, one of college football’s newest rivalry-style icons. Traditionally, winners of The Old Leather Helmet don the helmet on the field after the game, starting with the head coach and then rotating from player to player as the team celebrates its victory.

 

Each team will receive its own ticket allotment to the game and additional tickets will be sold through the Bowl ticket office. Tickets will be available for public sale early in 2022.

 

The Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game averages more than 68,973 fans for each game – higher than 36 bowl games from last year – and an additional 73.1 million television viewers since 2008. Total team payouts average $5.4 million – higher than 26 bowl games last season – with more than $75.8 million in payouts over its history.

 

Past and Future Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game match-ups include:

 

Year:     Match-Up:                                                                          Winner:              

2008       (9) Clemson vs. (24) Alabama                                     Alabama 34-10

2009       (5) Alabama vs. (7) Virginia Tech                                Alabama 34-24

2010       (16) LSU vs. (18) North Carolina                                 LSU 30-24

2011       (5) Boise State vs. (19) Georgia                                  Boise State 35-21

2012       (25) N.C. State vs. Tennessee                                     Tennessee 35-21

2012       (14) Clemson vs. (24) Auburn                                     Clemson 26-19

2013       (1) Alabama vs. Virginia Tech                                      Alabama 35-10

2014       (18) Ole Miss vs. Boise State                                       Ole Miss 35-13

2014       (2) Alabama vs. West Virginia                                     Alabama 33-23

2015       (25) Louisville vs. (6) Auburn                                       Auburn 31-24

2016       (18) Georgia vs. (22) North Carolina                         Georgia 33-24

2017       (3) Florida State vs. (1) Alabama                                Alabama 24-7

2017       (25) Tennessee vs. Georgia Tech                              Tennessee 42-41 (2 OT)

2018       (6) Washington vs. (9) Auburn                                   Auburn 21-16

2019       Alabama vs. Duke

2020       West Virginia vs. Florida State

2020       Georgia vs. Virginia

2020       Auburn vs. North Carolina

2021       Alabama vs. Miami

2021       Louisville vs. Ole Miss

2022       Oregon vs. Georgia

2022       Clemson vs. Georgia Tech

2024       Georgia vs. Clemson

 

For more information, visit Chick-fil-AKickoffGame.com.

 

#CFAKickoff

 

ABOUT THE CHICK-FIL-A KICKOFF GAME
Created in 2008 by Peach Bowl, Inc., the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game is the preeminent bowl-style, neutral-site game featuring two elite football programs and has been nationally televised on the first Saturday of the college football season since its inception. The game has hosted teams with national rankings of No. 1 (twice), 2, 3, 5 (twice), 6 (twice), 7, 9 (twice), 14, 16, 18 (twice), 19, 22, 24 (twice) and 25 (three times). The Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game boasts an average attendance of 68,973, has been watched on television by more than 73.1 million viewers, and has distributed $75.8 million in total team payouts. Since its inception in 2008, the Chick-fil-A Kickoff game has featured nine national coaches of the year, 26 players who were recipients of national awards during their collegiate careers, a total of 58 first-round NFL Draft picks and two teams that have used the game as a springboard to a National Championship that same season. For more information, visit WWW.CHICK-FIL-AKICKOFFGAME.COM.

 

CONTACT:
Matt Garvey                                                      Dillon Faulkner
Vice President, Communications              Communications Manager
Peach Bowl, Inc.                                               Peach Bowl, Inc.
404-586-8496                                                     404-586-8453
mgarvey@cfabowl.com                                dfaulkner@cfabowl.com

 

Clemson Announces 2019 Gameday Designations

The Clemson Athletic Department, in conjunction with the alumni association, student affairs, IPTAY and other campus groups, today announced special gameday designations for the 2019 football season. The 2019 season will mark Clemson’s 14th consecutive year hosting seven home games at Memorial Stadium.

 

Clemson will open its season at home on Thursday, Aug. 29, hosting Georgia Tech for the first game ever broadcast on the soon-to-launch ACC Network. The evening has been designated as a National Championship Celebration, honoring Clemson for its perfect 15-0 season in 2018 before kicking off the 2019 campaign.

 

The following week, Clemson will celebrate the nation’s oldest and most successful fundraising organization when it holds IPTAY Day during a marquee non-conference matchup against Texas A&M on Saturday, Sept. 7.

 

Clemson will celebrate Family Weekend during the team’s game against Charlotte on Saturday, Sept. 21. On Saturday, Oct. 12, the team will hold Solid Orange Day for its ACC contest against Florida State.

 

On Saturday, Oct. 26 against Boston College, Clemson will renew a tradition that dates to 1922 when it hosts homecoming. The day will also serve as Football Reunion Day, as the program will welcome back and honor members of its anniversary teams.

 

Clemson will conduct its annual Military Appreciation Day and Purple Out on Saturday, Nov. 2, against Wofford. The Tigers will conclude their home slate on Saturday, Nov. 16 against Wake Forest, honoring the team’s seniors on Senior Day and school legends with induction on Hall of Fame Day.

 

Fans can get their first look at the 2019 Tigers on Saturday, April 6, when the team will hold its Spring Game at Memorial Stadium. The team will also host its annual Fan Day on Sunday, Aug. 11.

 

2019 Football Gameday Designations

April 6: Clemson Spring Game

Aug. 11: Fan Appreciation Day

Aug. 29: Georgia Tech — National Championship Celebration

Sept. 7: Texas A&M — IPTAY Day

Sept. 21: Charlotte — Family Weekend

Oct. 12: Florida State — Solid Orange Day

Oct. 26: Boston College — Homecoming/Football Reunion Day

Nov. 2: Wofford — Military Appreciation Day/Purple Out

Nov. 16: Wake Forest — Senior Day/Hall of Fame Day

Lawrence Collects 2018 Archie Griffin Award

CLEMSON, S.C. — The Touchdown Club of Columbus announced this week that Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence has earned the Archie Griffin Award, presented annually to college football’s most valuable player following the conclusion of bowl season.

The honor is the third bestowed upon Clemson by the Touchdown Club of Columbus this year. On Dec. 18, Lawrence was announced as the organization’s Freshman of the Year. Earlier in December, Head Coach Dabo Swinney had been announced as the group’s Woody Hayes Award winner as coach of the year.

Lawrence becomes the second Clemson player to earn the honor since the award‘s inception in 1999. Former Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, whose school freshman records Lawrence broke throughout the 2018 campaign, earned the award in 2015.

This season, Lawrence completed 259-of-397 passes for 3,280 yards with 30 passing touchdowns and only four interceptions. He became the second true freshman and the first since Oklahoma’s Jamelle Holieway to guide his team to a national championship as the starting quarterback. He shined brightest on the game’s biggest stages, collecting Offensive Outstanding Player of the Game honors at the Cotton Bowl and Offensive MVP honors in the National Championship, averaging 337 yards in those contests while throwing six touchdowns and no interceptions.

The 2018 Archie Griffin Award will be presented during the 64th Touchdown Club of Columbus Awards on Saturday, Feb. 9 in Columbus, Ohio. A full list of all-time winners of the Archie Griffin Award is included below:

  • 2018: TREVOR LAWRENCE, Clemson
  • 2017: MCKENZIE MILTON, UCF
  • 2016: SAM DARNOLD, USC
  • 2015: DESHAUN WATSON, Clemson
  • 2014: EZEKIEL ELLIOTT, Ohio State
  • 2013: JAMEIS WINSTON, Florida State
  • 2012: JOHNNY MANZIEL, Texas A&M
  • 2011: MONTEE BALL, Wisconsin
  • 2010: ANDREW LUCK, Stanford
  • 2009: TOBY GERHART, Stanford
  • 2008: COLT McCOY, Texas
  • 2007: PAT WHITE, West Virginia
  • 2006: TROY SMITH, Ohio State
  • 2005: VINCE YOUNG, Texas
  • 2004: MATT LEINART, USC
  • 2003: MATT LEINART, USC
  • 2002: KEN DORSEY, Miami
  • 2001: KEN DORSEY, Miami
  • 2000: JOSH HEUPEL, Oklahoma
  • 1999: MICHAEL VICK, Virginia Tech