Clemson vs. Auburn Notes
Clemson defeated Auburn 84-53 on Sunday in the NCAA Tournament in San Diego. The 31-point victory margin was Clemson’s largest in an NCAA Tournament game. The previous best was 18 points in a 70-52 win over UAB in the 2011 NCAA Tournament first-round game in Dayton. Brad Brownell also coached that game for the Tigers.
The 31-point victory was the largest margin of victory in any game vs. a Top 25 team in school history. Auburn was ranked 19th in the final AP poll entering the NCAA Tournament. The previous record was a 27-point win (74-47) over Duke at Littlejohn Coliseum on Feb. 4, 2009.
Clemson’s win over #19 Auburn was the fourth win over a top 25 team this year for the Tigers. Clemson also defeated a #22 Florida, a #18 Miami (FL), a #19 North Carolina this year. This is just the sixth season in Clemson history the program has had at least four top 25 wins in the same year. The record is six set in 1979-80.
Gabe DeVoe scored 22 points in each NCAA Tournament game, the first Clemson player to have consecutive 20 point scoring games since Elden Campbell did it in the 1989 NCAA Tournament when he had 20 points against St. Mary’s then 24 against Arizona. Billy Williams also did in the first two NCAA games in Clemson history. He had 22 vs. Utah State and 24 vs. BYU in the 1980 tournament.
Clemson won its 25th game of the season Sunday to tie the school record. Clemson, now 25-9, also won 25 in 1986-87, Horace Grant’s senior year and 2006-07 when Clemson finished as a finalist at the NIT (25-11). Clemson won 26 games on the court in 1989-90, but two wins in the NCAA Tournament were vacated.
This was Clemson’s 10th win away from home this year. It is just one off the school record of 11 in 1996-97.
This is Clemson’s first Sweet 16 appearance since the 1997 tournament when Clemson won games in Kansas City over Miami (OH) and Tulsa. Clemson reached the Elite 8 in 1980, the furthest Clemson has gone in the tournament. Clemson also reached the Sweet 16 in 1990, but those games were later vacated. So this is the fourth time Clemson has reached the Sweet 16 on the court, but just the third recognized the NCAA.
In two games in San Diego, Clemson trailed for just 5 minutes and 21 seconds. The Tigers won fast break points 31-4.
With the victory over Auburn, Clemson is the second school to go to the College Football Playoff and the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament in the same academic year. Oklahoma reached the Final Four in both in 2015-16.
Clemson has now won six consecutive games against SEC teams, 3-0 in 2016-17 and 3-0 this year. Clemson also defeated Florida and South Carolina this year.
Clemson’s 84 points tonight were the most by the Tigers in an NCAA Tournament game.
I have been covering Clemson basketball for 40 years. Today's 84-53 win over a 26-win Auburn team ranked 19th in the nation and the regular season SEC champion is the most impressive clemson basketball performance I have seen.— Tim Bourret (@TimBourret) March 19, 2018