Season Review: Clemson's No. 7 final ranking highest since 1981

Tigers, FSU only FBS teams ranked in top 25 in scoring offense & defense, total offense & defense

Clemson’s Sammy Watkins avoids a tackle by Ohio State’s Armani Reeves during the Orange Bowl in Sun Life Stadium in Miami last Friday.

Photo by Ken Ruinard, Anderson Independent Mail, S.C.

KEN RUINARD/INDEPENDENT MAIL Clemson’s Sammy Watkins avoids a tackle by Ohio State’s Armani Reeves during the Orange Bowl in Sun Life Stadium in Miami last Friday.

Clemson Team Accomplishments, 2013

- The Tigers finished the season with an 11-2 overall, and a 7-1 mark in the ACC, ranked 7th by USA Today, 8th by Associated Press.

- Clemson's No. 7 ranking in the final USA Today Poll is the highest ranking in any final poll for the Clemson program since the Tigers won the National Championship in 1981. It is the second straight year Clemson has been ranked in the final top 10 by USA Today, the first time Clemson has had back-to-back top 10s since 1987-88.

- Clemson finished the season with an 11-2 record for the second straight year. It is the first time in school history that Clemson won at least 11 games in consecutive years.

- The Tigers defeated two top 10 teams this year, No. 5 Georgia to open the season and No. 6 Ohio State to end the season. It is just the second time Clemson has had two top 10 wins in the same year since 1981. Tigers also did that in 2011.

- Clemson was ranked in the top 10 in the nation of the AP and USA Today polls for 14 straight polls from the first poll through the November 24th poll. That is the longest streak in Clemson history, and was the third longest streak in college football on November 24. Only Alabama and Ohio State had longer streaks.

- Clemson began the season in the top 10 and finished the season in the top 10. It marked just the fifth time Clemson had done that, and the first time in 23 years.

- The Tigers were 4-0 on the road this year against ACC teams, the first time since 1995 that Clemson has won all four of its league road games. Clemson won five of six games away from home overall.

- Clemson had six wins over FBS teams that finished with a winning record, tied for the most in one season in Clemson history (1990).

- Clemson and national champion Florida State were the only schools in the nation to rank in the top 25 in scoring offense and scoring defense, total offense and total defense.

- The Tigers defeated fifth-ranked Georgia to open the season. Combined with the Chick-fil-A Bowl win over LSU to close the 2012 season, Clemson became the first non-SEC school to defeat top 10 SEC teams in consecutive games in college football history.

- Clemson completed the season ranked in the top 25 every week. It was just the seventh season in school history that Clemson was ranked in the top 25 for every week by the AP poll, but the second consecutive year.

- The Tigers achieved an 11-2 record despite playing a schedule that included four games against top 10 teams. Only Tennessee (6) and Auburn (5) played more games against top 10 teams than Clemson this year.

- Clemson recorded 10 wins in the regular season for just the fifth time in school history and achieved it in back to back seasons for the first time in history.

- Exposure for the Clemson program reached an all-time high. The campus played host to ESPN College Gameday twice in 2013, and became the first school to do that since 2008.

- Thirteen different players were named to an All-ACC team by either the media or the ACC coaches.

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Comments » 2

TigerNE writes:

I like going out on a high note and coming in as an underdog. Some of the projections for 2014 I see have us in the high teens (16 to 18 mostly, but some not even in the top 25). I say great! Motivate the newer guys to prove themselves.

DerrikB writes:

And motivate the defense to be what people think about when they hear the name Clemson

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