Dabo Swinney and the Tigers are entering unfamiliar territory as they prepare for this weekend’s trip to Syracuse. Clemson (2-2, 0-2) has dropped its first two ACC games for the first time since 2010. The Tigers regrouped to win three of their next four that season, but finished below .500 for the only time under Swinney. Clemson has come a long way since then, posting double-digit victories in each of the last 12 seasons and laying claim to eight ACC titles since 2010.
On his Sunday conference call, Swinney pinpointed the reason for Clemson’s uneven start, “We’re 2-2 because it’s all about the ball … I knew going into the game that if we lost the turnover margin, we would lose the game. And that’s what happened.” The Tigers have lost the turnover battle in each of their two losses, some of which caused significant momentum swings at a crucial juncture.
The Tigers outgained the Seminoles, but Swinney pointed out, “Stat wise, we’ve got great stats. But the only stat that matters is winning or losing.”
Clemson will look to rebound when they square off with Syracuse, Saturday. Last season, the Tigers trailed the Orange at halftime but rallied for 17 fourth-quarter points in a 27-21 victory. It was Clemson’s fifth straight win in the series.