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Tigers the Preseason ACC Favorite

PINEHURST, N.C. — Clemson was chosen as the preseason favorite to win the 2015 ACC Football Championship, according to a vote of the league media Tuesday at the conference’s annual preseason media event at Pinehurst Resort. The Tigers were picked first on 84 ballots, followed by Florida State (41) and Georgia Tech (20). In addition, sophomore quarterback Deshaun Watson was voted ACC Preseason Player of the Year.

Watson (69) was followed by reigning ACC Player of the Year, Pittsburgh running back James Conner, in terms of first-place votes (46) for the league’s top preseason honor. Watson, a member of the Walter Camp Player of the Year watch list, had a passing efficiency of 188.6 as a freshman while posting a 4-1 record as a starter. Watson’s efficiency rating was greater than that of 2014 Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota of Oregon, but he was affected by two injuries during his rookie season.

The Gainesville, Ga., product is one of eight returning starters for the Tigers, including three off the nation’s reigning No. 1 ranked total defense from a year ago. Clemson received 101 votes by the media to win the Atlantic Division, followed by Florida State in second with 56.

Clemson was last chosen to win the ACC in 2013, when the Tigers went 11-2 overall and 7-1 in league play. The last time the Tigers won the conference was in 2011, when the preseason ACC Kickoff was also held at Pinehurst. Clemson has won 10 or more games each of the past four seasons, with a 26-6 ACC record during that stretch.

ACC Championship Votes

  1. Clemson, 84
  2. Florida State, 41
  3. Georgia Tech, 20
  4. Virginia Tech, 7
  5. North Carolina, 3
  6. Miami, 2
  7. NC State, 1

ACC Player of the Year Votes

  1. Deshaun Watson, Clemson – 69
  2. James Conner, Pittsburgh – 46
  3. Justin Thomas, Georgia Tech – 13
  4. Jalen Ramsey, Florida State – 7
  5. Brad Kayaa, Miami – 7
  6. Marquise Williams, North Carolina – 6
  7. Kendall Fuller, Virginia Tech – 6
  8. Tyler Boyd, Pittsburgh – 3
  9. Jacoby Brissett, NC State – 1

TIGERTIME Magazine is at the Printers

watson-sample-pageIt’s almost TIGERTIME!  TIGERTIME Magazine is at the printing press and will start shipping next week.

Orders yours online  today and get it hot of the press!

Dan Radakovich Finalist for Sports Business Journal Ad of Year

DanRad2CLEMSON, S.C. – Following a remarkable year for Clemson sports both on and off the competition fields, Director of Athletics Dan Radakovich has been named a finalist for the SportsBusiness Journal Athletics Director of the Year Award. Radakovich is nominated along with Mitch Barnhart of Kentucky, Jeff Long of Arkansas and Ian McCaw of Baylor, and a winner will be named Wednesday night at the Sports Business Awards Ceremony in New York.


“This is a great honor to be nominated alongside these three great leaders in our profession,” Radakovich said. “It’s a testament to the hard work of our student-athletes, coaches, staff and the entire Clemson Family and what each of them do for our department.”


In 2014-15, Clemson student-athletes posted the highest athletic department GPA in school history with a 3.02 cumulative average in the Fall semester, and the NCAA’s Graduation Success Rate of 91 percent ranked third nationally among public institutions.


The football program recorded its fourth-consecutive 10-win season and Clemson earned NCAA Tournament appearances in men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s tennis, track and field, baseball, rowing and men’s and women’s golf. Additionally, the school won Atlantic Coast Conference titles in men’s soccer, women’s indoor track and women’s outdoor track.


Since his arrival in December of 2013, the athletic department has received approvals for $158 million in facility improvements and increased spending on direct student-athlete development programs including nutrition, mental health and professional development by $1.8 million. His department has increased overall revenue from $69 million in fiscal year 2014 to $79 million in FY15 and a projected $85 million in FY16.


Radakovich also served in 2014 as a member of the inaugural College Football Playoff selection committee.


Launched in 2008, the Sports Business Awards were established by SportsBusiness Journal and SportsBusiness Daily to celebrate and recognize the leaders, visionaries and day-to-day practitioners who personify excellence in the business of sports. The 2015 nominees and winners will be recognized for excellence and outstanding achievement in the business of sports for the period from March 1, 2014 – February 28, 2015.

Ogundeko Dismissed from Clemson Football Team

E_Ogundeko01Clemson, S.C—Sophomore defensive end Ebenezer Ogundeko has been dismissed from the Clemson football team.  Head Coach Dabo Swinney made the announcement Tuesday.

“Ebenezer Ogundeko has been dismissed from the Clemson football team for a violation of team rules and behavior detrimental to our football team,” said Swinney.  “We wish him well.”

Ogundeko, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., came to Clemson in 2013 and red-shirted the season. He played in seven games last season for 16 total snaps from scrimmage and had five total tackles as a reserve defensive end and special teams player.

Howard’s Rock Open for Graduation

After missing three consecutive days of practice, Coach Swinney is expected to return today.

CLEMSON, S.C. — As has been the tradition for years, Howard’s Rock will again be open to May 2015 graduates and their families for photographers on Friday. Graduates can enter at Gate 2 of Memorial Stadium, located under the scoreboard atop the hill on the east side of the stadium, which will be open from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. No other areas of the stadium, including the field and the hill, will be accessible due to ongoing construction.

Commencement ceremonies are set for 9:30 a.m., 2:30 and 6:30 p.m., inside Littlejohn Coliseum. On behalf of Clemson Athletics, congratulations to all the new graduates!

Three Tigers Drafted on Day 3

GradyJarrett1CLEMSON, S.C. – Three more Tigers were selected in the 2015 NFL draft Saturday. Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett, punter Bradley Pinion and linebacker Tony Steward were selected on Day 3 of the draft that was held in Chicago, Ill.

On Thursday night, Clemson had two first-round selections. Vic Beasley was the No. 8 pick of the draft by the Atlanta Falcons and Stephone Anthony was the No. 31 pick of the first round by the New Orleans Saints. It marked the first time since the 1982 draft that Clemson had two first-round draft selections and just the third time in history (1979 was the other year). It was the first time Clemson had two defensive players taken in the first round as well.

Five Tigers were drafted overall, the seventh consecutive year Clemson has had 4+ players selected. Clemson is the only school in the ACC that can boast that accomplishment. Clemson’s five selections tied for 10th most in the nation and its four defensive players tied for second most. Only Louisville (6) had more defensive players drafted than Clemson.

Jarrett was the first selection of the fifth round, the 137th player selected overall, by the Atlanta Falcons. The First-Team All-ACC Tiger joins teammate Vic Beasley with Atlanta. Former Tiger Malliciah Goodman will be in his third year on the Falcons’ defensive line in 2015.

Like Beasley, Jarrett is a native of Georgia (Conyers) and was a big reason Clemson led the nation in total defense in 2014. Jarrett finished the season with 73 tackles, including 10 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. He started all 13 games in 2014 and made 37 starts in his career.

A fifth-round selection by the San Francisco 49ers, Pinion was the first kicker selected in this draft and the first Clemson kicker drafted sBradleyPinion2ince 1991 when Chris Gardocki was a third-round selection by the Chicago Bears. Pinion, who was a junior in 2014, handled the punting and kickoff chores for Clemson in 2014. He averaged 42.6 yards per punt and had a school-record 28 punts inside the 20. In terms of kickoffs, he had 36 touchbacks on 74 kickoffs.

Steward was selected in the sixth round by Buffalo. The native of Hastings, Fla. did not become a starter until 2014, as he was injured a good portion of his career. He was Clemson’s Special Teams Player-of-the-Year in 2012 and 2013. But in 2014, he was Clemson’s third-leading tackler with 73, the same total Jarrett TonyStewardhad. Steward also had 10 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks and a team-high 13 quarterback pressures. It was the fifth time in the last six years the Bills drafted a Tiger.

• When Tony Steward was selected by the Buffalo Bills in the sixth round, it marked the third straight year the Bills selected a Tiger. This is the first time the same NFL team has taken at least one Tiger three years in a row since the 1983-85 era, when the Giants did it. The Giants took three Tigers in 1983, the most Tigers ever by one team in the same draft, then took two in 1984 and one in 1985.
• The Atlanta Falcons drafted two Tigers, Vic Beasley and Grady Jarrett. It marked the first time since the 2003 draft that one NFL team has taken two Tigers in the same draft. That year, Denver selected Nick Eason and Bryant McNeal.
• Clemson had four defensive players selected in the draft, tied for the most for the program in the last 16 years. Clemson also had four defensive players taken in the 2011 draft. The record is six (1999).
• As stated above, Louisville had the most defensive players taken in the draft with six. Clemson had four along with Arkansas, Florida State, Oregon State, Stanford, Texas and Washington. So when Clemson defeated Louisville last year at Memorial Stadium, there were 10 defensive players on the field who were drafted in 2015.
• As far as total NFL draft picks since the 2009 season, or since Dabo Swinney became Clemson’s head coach, the Tigers have the ninth-most selections in the nation with 33. Alabama is first with 48, LSU is second with 45, Southern California is third with 43 and Florida State is fourth with 40. Georgia and Oklahoma have 39 apiece, while Florida is seventh with 38. Ohio State is eighth with 35 and Clemson is ninth with 33. Miami (Fla.) rounds out the top 10 in total NFL draft picks since 2009 with 31.
• This marked the second straight year Clemson had five players taken in the draft. Clemson had four offensive players selected last year and four defensive players selected this year.
• Florida State had the most players selected in this year’s draft with 11. Louisville was second with 10 and Florida was third with eight. Miami (Fla.) and Alabama were tied for fourth with seven apiece. Missouri, Oklahoma, Southern California and Stanford were tied for sixth with six selections apiece. Clemson was tied with for 10th with five selections. Other schools with five selections were Arkansas, Auburn, Georgia, Mississippi State, Ohio State, Oregon, Oregon State and Texas.
• The Atlanta Falcons had drafted just four Tigers in their history prior to this year, then took two this year (Vic Beasley, Grady Jarrett).
• When Bradley Pinion was taken in the fifth round by San Francisco, it marked the second straight year the 49ers selected a Tiger. The 49ers drafted Brandon Thomas in the third round last year, but Thomas had a torn ACL and did not play in a game in 2014. The last Tiger to appear in a game for the 49ers is Derrick Hamilton in 2005. Four different former Tigers have played on 49ers’ Super Bowl Championship teams (Dwight Clark, Terrence Flagler, Archie Reese, Jim Stuckey).

Beasley Chosen in First Round of NFL Draft by Atlanta

VicBeasley1Clemson , S.C. –Clemson defensive end Vic Beasley was selected by the Atlanta Falcons with the eighth selection of the first round of the NFL draft held in Chicago on Thursday night. Beasley was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year and a consensus All-American in 2014 when he helped Clemson lead the nation in total defense for just the second time in school history.

Beasley is the 25th Clemson player in history to be chosen in the first round of the NFL draft, the fourth in the last six years. He is the seventh Tiger in history to be chosen within the first eight picks of the draft. Among Clemson defensive players, only Gaines Adams (4th, 2007) and Jeff Bryant (6th, 1982) have been taken with a higher selection.

The native of Adairsville , Ga , a town just 50 miles from the Falcons home facility. is just the fifth Clemson player drafted by the Atlanta Falcons, the first in the first round. However, he is the second Clemson defensive end taken by the Falcons in the last three years. Malliciah Goodman was a fourth-round pick by the Falcons from Dabo Swinney’s program in 2013. Goodman just completed his second year with the franchise.

VicBeasley2“Vic called his shot,” said Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney from Chicago . “He is the Babe Ruth of the draft and come to think of it Ruth called his shot in Chicago (at 1932 World Series).

“When I saw him tonight he had a red and white suit on. I asked him about wearing those colors and he said they are the colors of the Atlanta Falcons. That is where he wanted to go and where he thought he would go.

“I am so happy for him because he wanted to play near his family. His father was so excited he could hardly stand up to hug him.

“The Falcons came up and worked him out a long time ago and we thought they were very interested.

“This is a great night for our program. With a top 10 selection last year on offense (Sammy Watkins) and a top 10 selection on defense this year, it shows our commitment on both sides of the ball. And we should have many more defensive players taken this weekend.

“Coach (Brent) Venables and ( Marion ) Hobby were both here with me at the draft and I am so proud of the job they did in developing Vic over his career. This is a guy who came to us as a running back.”

Clemson now has had a first-round draft choice three consecutive years. DeAndre Hopkins was the first-round selection of the Houston Texans in 2013, Sammy Watkins the first-round selection of the Buffalo Bills in 2014 and Beasley a first-round choice this year. It is the first time in history Clemson has had a top 10 pick in consecutive years.

Beasley is the first Clemson defensive player to be taken in the first round since Gaines Adams was the No. 4 selection of the entire draft in 2007. Like Beasley, Adams was a consensus All-American his senior year.

This is the first time since the 1997-99 drafts that Clemson has had a first round selection three consecutive years. In 1997, Trevor Pryce was the first round selection of the Denver Broncos, in 1998 Anthony Simmons was the first round selection of the Seattle Seahawks and in 1999 Antwan Edwards was the first round selection of the Green Bay Packers.

Beasley is the fourth Clemson player since Dabo Swinney became head coach in 2009 to be a first-round draft choice. He is now second in Clemson history among coaches in drafted first-round selections. Danny Ford coached seven first-rounders between 1979-89.

Beasley joins Bennie Cunningham, a tight end in 1974 and 1975, as the only Clemson players in history to be a two-time first-team All-American, a first-round draft choice and graduate from Clemson.

Anthony Taken in First Round by New Orleans

StephoneAnthony2Clemson, S,C.—Stephone Anthony, the top tackler on Clemson’s number-one ranked defense, was selected in the first round of the 2015 NFL draft by the New Orleans Saints on Thursday night. Anthony was the 31st selection of the draft and gave Clemson two first-round draft choices.

Earlier in the evening Vic Beasley was the eighth selection of the NFL draft by the Atlanta Falcons. This marks just the third time Clemson has had two first round selections in the same draft, the first time in 33 years. In the 1982 NFL draft, defensive tackle Jeff Bryant and wide receiver Perry Tuttle were both first round selections.

Clemson also had two selections in the 1979 draft, as Jerry Butler was taken by the Buffalo Bills and Steve Fuller by the Kansas City Chiefs.

This is the first time Clemson has had two defensive players taken in the first round of the same draft. Many other members of Clemson’s 2014 defense are expected to be chosen on Friday and Saturday as the NFL Draft continues.

StephoneAnthony3Clemson now has had at least one first round draft pick in each of the last three years. Clemson, Texas A&M, Alabama , Florida State and Florida are the only schools who can make that claim.

Anthony is just the fourth player from Clemson to be selected by the New Orleans Saints, the first since the 1990 draft when wide receiver Gary Cooper was chosen in the 10th round. Cliff Austin was a third round selection in 1983 and Tony Stephens was taken in the third round in 1988.

The last former Tiger to play for the Saints is Anthony Waters, who was a linebacker on the Saints Super Bowl Championship team of the 2009 season.

Anthony will join former Clemson running back C.J. Spiller on the Saints roster in 2015. Spiller signed a free agent contract with the Saints earlier this off season.

Anthony was a first-team All-ACC linebacker this year who had 90 tackles in 2014. He also had 10.5 tackles for loss and led the Tigers in tackles in five of the 13 games.

Most Mock Drafts See Beasley as Top 10 Selection on Thursday

Clemson, S.C.—Clemson defensive end Vic Beasley will be one of 28 prospects at the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago on Thursday evening as the National Football League begins its annual draft of college players at 8:00 p.m. Beasley is one of many former Tiger football players who could be selected over the three days of the draft.

Eighteen of 22 mock drafts by various members of the media list Beasley as a top 10 pick, including seven who believe the Clemson graduate will be a top five selection.

If Beasley is taken within the first three selections he will be the highest draft pick in Clemson history. Banks McFadden (1939, Brooklyn), Gaines Adams (2007, Tampa Bay) and Sammy Watkins (2014, Buffalo) were all the number-four selection of the NFL draft after their respective final seasons at Clemson.

Beasley set a Clemson record for career sacks with 33, including 12 last year, and had 52.5 career tackles for loss, including 21.5 last year. He was a consensus All-American in 2013 and 2014 and was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 2014.

Clemson has had a first-round draft choice each of the last two years. DeAndre Hopkins was the No. 27 selection of the 2013 draft by the Houston Texans and Watkins was the No. 4 pick by Buffalo last year.

If Beasley is taken in the first round it would mark just the second time Clemson has had a first-round draft pick three years in a row. The only other time it happened was in the 1997-99 era when Trevor Pryce (Denver, 1997), Anthony Simmons (Seattle, 1998) and Antwan Edwards (Green Bay, 1999) were first-round selections in three consecutive seasons.

Ten schools have had at least one first-round pick each of the last two years and thus have the opportunity to have a first-round pick three years in a row. Those schools are Clemson, Texas A&M, LSU, North Carolina, Alabama, Florida State, Notre Dame, Florida, UCLA and Tennessee.

Seven Clemson players attended the NFL Combine last February, including six defensive players, more than any other school in the nation. Those six seniors were a big reason Clemson led the nation in total defense for the first time since 1990.

In addition to Beasley, first-team All-ACC linebacker Stephone Anthony, first-team All-ACC defensive tackle Grady Jarrett and first-team cornerback Garry Peters went to Indianapolis for the combine and are likely to be drafted this weekend. Many mock drafts have Anthony as a second-round pick and Jarrett as a third-round selection.

Defensive ends Tavaris Barnes and Corey Crawford were at the combine and are likely to be selected at some point over the three-day process. Punter Bradley Pinion also went to the combine.

Other Clemson seniors who could be drafted include linebacker Tony Steward, and defensive tackles DeShawn Williams and Josh Watson. Robert Smith, the leading tackler in Clemson’s secondary last year, is a senior safety who could be chosen as well. Offensive players Adam Humphries, David Beasley, Kalon Davis and Cole Stoudt are candidates for the draft as well.

Other Clemson draft Notes
Clemson has had at least four selections in the NFL Draft each of the last six years, the only ACC school that can make that claim. Clemson’s six-year run of at least four players drafted is the longest by an ACC school since Florida State had at least four selected 10 consecutive years from 1992-2001.

Since Dabo Swinney became Clemson’s head coach the Tigers have had 28 players selected, tied for second among league schools. Florida State has the most with 29, followed by Clemson and North Carolina with 28, Miami (FL) with 24, Virginia Tech with 17, Pittsburgh and N.C. State with 14, Syracuse and Georgia Tech with 13.

•Beasley will be the fifth Clemson player to attend the draft as a guest of the NFL. The others are Chester McGlockton (1992), Gaines Adams (2007), C.J. Spiller (2010) and Sammy Watkins (2014)

•Clemson has had 24 NFL first-round draft picks in its history. (NFL records do not consider Harvey White a first-round draft choice in 1960 as it was an AFL selection). Each of the last three Clemson players taken in the first round have been offensive players. The last defensive player taken in the first round was the late Gaines Adams, the No. 4 selection of the draft by the Tampa Bay Bucs.

•Thirty former Clemson players were on NFL rosters last year and 26 got into an NFL game, more than any other season. Four were on practice squads or injured reserve.

Vic Beasley in NFL Mock Drafts
(As of April 28, 2015)

•#3 to Jacksonville Jaguars
Sports Illustrated, Bucky Brooks of,

•#5 Washington Redskins
Daniel Jeremiah of, Walter Football, Dave Brugler of, Pete Prisco of

•#6 to New York Jets
Charley Casserly of, NFL Draft, Comcast Sportsnet. Will Brinson of

•#8 to Atlanta Falcons
Charles Davis of, Lance Zierkin of NFL Nation of, Mel Kiper of ESPN, Beacher,, #Peter King, of Sports Illustrated
#Has Beasley drafted by Washington in a trade

•#13 New Orleans Saints
Brian Baldinger of, Todd McShay of ESPN, Rob Rang of CBS Sports, Josh Norris of NBC Sports.

Clemson Announces Football Non-Conference Opponents Thru 2020

NotreDame2With games scheduled against Auburn, Texas A&M, Notre Dame and the Palmetto Bowl matchup against South Carolina, Clemson football announced its non-conference football schedule through 2020 on Thursday.

The Tigers take on Auburn (2016-17) and Texas A&M (2018-19) in home-and-home agreements the next four years before traveling to Notre Dame in 2020. Clemson also adds home contests against Troy (2016), Kent State (2017), Georgia Southern (2018), Charlotte (2019) and Akron (2020).

Each year the Tigers also plan to host an in-state Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) school, with SC State, The Citadel, Furman and Wofford each set to make an appearance on the schedule.

“Our fans place a big value on making sure we have seven home games in Death Valley each fall, and the great work of Kyle Young and Coach Swinney have solidified that for the next five years,” Director of Athletics Dan Radakovich said. “Also, with our leadership position within the state of South Carolina, it’s important for us to welcome the FCS schools and continue to support those programs by playing one annually.”

Clemson has set dates for all contests through the 2019 season, and the Tigers are hoping to add another in-state opponent for 2020 in the coming months.

9/3 at Auburn
9/10 TROY

11/25 at South Carolina

9/8 at Texas A&M

11/30 at South Carolina

8/25 or 9/5 TBD
TBA at Notre Dame
9/19 AKRON