Looking at the landscape of the ACC, there are interesting possibilities.
The remaining ACC schedule could bode well for the Tigers. NC State and Wake Forest, at this moment, the main road blocks to Clemson having a chance to claim the Atlantic Division title, must play one another, so one of those road blocks will be moved.
Also, whichever team wins that NC State-Wake Forest matchup, doesn’t look like a team that can necessarily run the table. Those teams have worked hard but they’re also lucky in that they haven’t been infected by the injury bug like Clemson and some j*others. Neither team looks dominant on defense and have outscored undermanned teams. Make no mistake, they are two very good teams but certainly not unbeatable.
The teams the Tigers have left to face are Florida State, Wake Forest both at home, at Louisville, at Pittsburgh and this week at Syracuse. With the defensive being what it is and knowing Tyler Davis should be back at some point, anything is possible.
This defense has more than proven its capacity to do remarkable things. If the offense continues to show, even the smallest improvement each week, Clemson CAN get a shot at being in the ACC Championship.
This, right now, is the goal for the rest of the season. Without all the noise surrounding the “if’s” and “how’s” that accompanies the playoff, this team just needs to remain laser focused. There is still enough time to accomplish great things.
If this scenario comes to fruition, this could be Dabo Swinney and his staff’s greatest coaching job, period. To fight adversities, injuries, inexperience and the never ending questions that comes with missed expectations and still be in a position to rise to the moment, what a story of redemption and resilience. The kind of season that can and will carry forward to next season and beyond.
In retrospect, this team didn’t reload, it didn’t rebuild it was forced to take time and reset. Sometimes, everyone must wait, even for the best of things and so it is with the 2021 Clemson Tigers.
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