It just means more. Or that’s what the SEC tells us.
However, when it comes to the top-five matchup between Clemson and Georgia on Saturday night, this one means more for the ACC’s Tigers, and here are three reasons why.
Strength of Schedule
Let’s face it, Clemson may not face another Top-25 team in the regular season. The ACC does have 2 up-and-coming teams in UNC and Miami, but neither are in Clemson’s division. The ACC Atlantic, other than Clemson, is mediocre at best. The national opinion of it is even worse.
College Football Playoff
Although Clemson can absolutely still make the playoff in the event of a close loss to Georgia, there is a chance they do not. Suppose Georgia beats Clemson and runs the table, or even suffers a close loss to Alabama in the SEC Championship. They get in over Clemson. Alabama makes the playoff with one or no losses over Clemson due to strength of schedule. Oklahoma could easily run the table, and they make it. OSU wins out or one loss they also get in. The ramifications of this game will likely extend beyond the regular season. Win, control your own destiny, lose and you do not.
I can hear Paul Finnebaum and all the pundits now. “Clemson’s run is over. They may rule the ACC, but they can no longer compete with the big boys”. After last year when Ryan Day implied Clemson cheats by stealing plays, some fan bases already question Clemson’s success. With the two most recent blowout losses Clemson has suffered in consecutive years, you know what’s coming in the event of a loss, particularly a bad one.
While I do personally think Clemson has a great chance at winning, we’ll find out for sure in a few short days. Fingers crossed that no more Clemson players contract Covid and are unable to play.
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