Notes on Clemson's 2020 football schedule


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Clemson will return 2-time ACC Player of the Year Travis Etienne for the 2020 season.
Clemson will return 2-time ACC Player of the Year Travis Etienne for the 2020 season.

Clemson's 2020 football schedule was released by the ACC on Wednesday. Check out some of the notes on next year's season below.

SEPT. 3 • AT GEORGIA TECH • BOBBY DODD STADIUM, ATLANTA, GA.

Clemson will open the season against Georgia Tech for the second straight season, representing the first time Clemson has opened with an ACC foe in back-to-back years since a five-season stretch of in-conference season openers across the 1965-69 seasons. Approaching this Thursday night opener, the Tigers are in the midst of a five-game winning streak against Georgia Tech for the first time in series history and will attempt to win a third straight game at Georgia Tech for the first time in program annals.

SEPT. 12 • LOUISVILLE • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

Clemson enters its Sept. 12 contest with Louisville 6-0 all-time against the Cardinals, the fifth opponent in school history against whom Clemson won its first six games. Clemson has scored 42, 47, 77 and 45 points in its last four meetings with Louisville, respectively, representing Clemson's first time scoring 40-plus points in four straight games in a series with an ACC opponent.

SEPT. 19 • AKRON • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

After opening the season with two conference contests, Clemson will play its first non-conference game of the season on Sept. 19, when the Tigers face the Akron Zips at Memorial Stadium. The game will represent the first meeting of the two schools and will be Clemson's third game against a MAC opponent during Dabo Swinney's head coaching tenure, including a 52-27 win against Ball State in 2012 and a 56-3 win against Kent State in 2017.

SEPT. 26 • VIRGINIA • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

Clemson will face Virginia in a rematch of the 2019 ACC Championship Game on Sept. 26. Clemson is 39-8-1 against Virginia all-time, including opening the series against the Cavaliers with a 29-game winning streak across the 1955-89 seasons. That previous 29-game winning streak is tied for the sixth-longest winning streak in FBS history for one team over another, trailing Notre Dame over Navy (43), Nebraska over Kansas (36), Oklahoma over Kansas State (32), Florida over Kentucky (31), Penn State over Temple (31) and matching Nebraska over Kansas State (29).

OCT. 2 • AT BOSTON COLLEGE • ALUMNI STADIUM, CHESTNUT HILL, MASS.

On Friday, Oct. 2, Clemson will return to the site of its most recent Friday victory, a 56-10 win in Chestnut Hill in 2016. Last season, Clemson produced one of its most dominant performances of 2019 against Boston College, outgaining the Eagles, 674-177. The 497-yard differential was Clemson’s largest yardage differential against an ACC opponent since the conference’s founding in 1953, surpassing a 464-yard advantage against Wake Forest in 2000.

OCT. 10 • AT FLORIDA STATE • DOAK CAMPBELL STADIUM, TALLAHASSEE, FLA.

Clemson will attempt to earn a sixth consecutive victory against Florida State and continue its recent run of hot starts in the series when the Tigers face the Seminoles in Tallahassee on Oct. 10. The Tigers carried a 28-0 lead into halftime in both Clemson's 59-10 win in Tallahassee in 2018 and 45-14 win in Clemson in 2019. In the last two games between the two programs, Clemson has combined to post a 56-0 edge in points, a 614-128 advantage in total yards and a 35-10 advantage in first downs in the first half.

OCT. 17 • NC STATE • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

One year after Clemson defeated NC State in Raleigh to earn the ACC Atlantic Division title, the Tigers will welcome the Wolfpack to Death Valley on Oct. 17. Clemson has won 15 of its last 16 games against NC State, including each of the last eight, the longest winning streak by either team in the all-time series. The teams most recent meeting at Death Valley was in 2018 in a battle of undefeated Top 20 squads, when Clemson ran out to a 34-0 third-quarter lead en route to a 41-7 victory on Homecoming.

OCT. 24 • SYRACUSE • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

On Oct. 24, Syracuse will make its first trip to Death Valley since Clemson's memorable 27-23 come-from-behind victory that helped propel Clemson to a 15-0 record and a national championship in 2018. Clemson is 6-2 against Syracuse all-time, including a 3-0 home record. Clemson has been ranked in the AP Top 25 in all eight all-time contests against Syracuse, including a Top 3 ranking in six of the last seven matchups with the Orange.

NOV. 7 • AT NOTRE DAME • NOTRE DAME STADIUM, SOUTH BEND, IND.

In a battle of historic programs, Clemson and Notre Dame will meet for the fifth time all-time and for the third time in a six-year span when the teams clash on Nov. 7. After dropping the teams' first meeting in 1977, Clemson has won each of its last three games against Notre Dame, including a 16-10 win in South Bend in 1979, a memorable 24-22 win in torrential rain in Clemson in 2015, and a 30-3 win in the College Football Playoff National Semifinal at the Cotton Bowl Classic in 2018.

NOV. 14 • THE CITADEL • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

Clemson will welcome the Bulldogs of The Citadel to Death Valley on Nov. 14, part of Clemson's annual scheduling philosophy that has featured an in-state FCS opponent every year since 2007. Clemson is 34-0 against FCS opponents since Division I split in 1978, winning 33 of the 34 games by double digits.

NOV. 21 • AT WAKE FOREST • BB&T FIELD, WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.

Clemson will conclude regular season conference play on Nov. 21 at Wake Forest, where Clemson posted one of its most prolific rushing games in history in its most recent visit in 2018. In a 63-3 win at Wake Forest in 2018, Clemson rushed for 471 yards and averaged 11.8 yards per carry, breaking the previous school record for yards per carry set on Oct. 17, 1903 against Georgia Tech (11.2). Running backs Travis Etienne, Lyn-J Dixon and Adam Choice all helped Clemson record the first game in school history in which three different Clemson players exceeded 125 rushing yards in a single game.

NOV. 28 • SOUTH CAROLINA • MEMORIAL STADIUM, CLEMSON, S.C.

Clemson will conclude regular season play against rival South Carolina on Nov. 28. The Tigers have won each of their last six contests against the Gamecocks, and another Clemson victory this season would match the longest winning streak in series history by either program (seven by Clemson from 1934-40).

***

Additional Notes on the 2020 Clemson Football Schedule:

* Clemson will once again play 10 Power Five teams (including Notre Dame) in 2019. Clemson has won 76 games against Power Five opponents since 2013, seven more than any other program in the country.

* Clemson enters the season with an active winning streak against every team on its schedule with exception of Akron, against whom the Tigers have never played. Clemson has active winning streaks against Georgia Tech (five), Louisville (six), Virginia (four), Boston College (nine), Florida State (five), NC State (eight), Syracuse (two), Notre Dame (three), The Citadel (17), Wake Forest (11) and South Carolina (six).

* Clemson will once again provide its fans with a home slate featuring at least seven games at Memorial Stadium for the 14th consecutive season. In the College Football Playoff era (since 2014), Clemson is 41-1 at home, the most home wins and top home winning percentage in the country.

After not opening a season on a Thursday at any point in its first 123 seasons, Clemson will now open the year on a Thursday night for a second straight season. It will represent the first time Clemson has opened a season on the road on a Thursday. A victory would even Clemson at 61-61-10 all-time in Thursday games and give Clemson its ninth consecutive Thursday win since 2012.

* Clemson will open the season on the road for the first time since 2016, when second-ranked Clemson defeated Auburn, 19-13, at Jordan-Hare Stadium to kickoff an eventual national championship campaign.

* Clemson will open the season against an ACC opponent for only the 14th time since the conference's founding in 1953. Clemson is 10-2-1 against

* ACC opponents in Week 1 contests all-time, including a 52-14 home win against Georgia Tech last season.

* The 2020 season marks the seventh time in eight years that Clemson opened conference play on the road. Clemson has won each of its last five conference openers since 2015, tied for the longest conference-opener winning streak in school history (five from 1980-84).

* After facing Georgia Tech in the season opener, Clemson will play Louisville in its second game, representing the first time since 2004 that Clemson has opened a season with back-to-back conference games. It will be Clemson's fifth such instance since the formation of the ACC in 1953, joining the 1958, 1959, 1965 and 2004 seasons.

* Clemson will play three consecutive home games in September against Louisville (Sept. 12), Akron (Sept. 19) and Virginia (Sept. 26). It will be Clemson's first three-game homestand since 2015, when the Tigers hosted Notre Dame, Georgia Tech and Boston College in three consecutive weeks en route to a national championship berth.

* Clemson's game against Boston College on Friday, Oct. 2 will be Clemson's 60th Friday game all-time. Clemson is 30-24-5 all-time on Fridays. Clemson's last Friday victory came in the same location against the same opponent, when the third-ranked Tigers defeated the Eagles, 56-10, in Chestnut Hill in 2016.

* Ten of the games on Clemson's regular season schedule will be played on Saturday. Clemson has won 43 consecutive Saturday games, with its only three losses since the start of the 2017 season coming on a Friday and two Mondays. By the time Clemson plays another Saturday contest on Sept. 12, it will have been exactly 1,400 days since Clemson last suffered a Saturday defeat.

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