Wake Forest at Clemson: Game Notes

Clemson will conclude both its 2021 home slate and its 2021 regular season conference slate on Saturday when the Tigers host the Wake Forest Demon Deacons on Nov. 20. Kickoff at Memorial Stadium for Senior Day is scheduled for noon ET.

A win on Saturday would keep Clemson’s chances at an ACC Atlantic Division title alive. Clemson won five straight ACC Atlantic Division titles from 2015-19 and then earned an ACC Championship Game berth in a divisionless season in 2020. A win would also give
Clemson at least six regular season conference wins for an 11th straight year and pull the Tigers within three of the longest such streak in ACC history (Florida State, 14 from 1992-2005).

Clemson will honor its decorated 2021 senior class on Saturday in a venue that has treated the group almost immaculately in their careers. There are five Clemson “super seniors” who were on the roster (but did not play) the last time Clemson lost at home (2016 vs. Pitt). This
year’s seniors will attempt to finish 26-0 at home in the last four years and would become the second straight senior class to go undefeated at home in a four-year span. The 2020 and 2021 seniors would be the first to post back-to-back undefeated home records over four
years since the 1940 and 1941 Clemson seniors who played home games at Historic Riggs Field before the opening of Memorial Stadium in 1942.

Saturday’s contest will be played on the 52nd birthday of Clemson Head Coach Dabo Swinney. It will mark the second time the Tigers have played on Swinney’s birthday in his head coaching tenure and will mark only the third time that Clemson has played on the
birthday of its active head coach, including playing on Swinney’s 41st birthday in 2010 and Red Parker’s 43rd birthday in 1974.

What to Watch For

  • Clemson attempting to improve to 69-17-1 all-time against Wake Forest. Clemson’s current 68 all-time wins against Wake Forest are its second-most against any opponent in school history, trailing the Tigers’ 71 wins against South Carolina.
  • Clemson attempting to win its 13th consecutive game against Wake Forest, dating back to 2009. It would mark Clemson’s second 13-game winning streak in series history, trailing a 15-game streak from 1977-91. Clemson’s current 12-game winning streak against Wake Forest is the Tigers’ longest active winning streak against an ACC foe.
  • Clemson attempting to earn an 11th straight home victory against Wake Forest, dating back to 2000. Clemson’s last home loss to Wake Forest came in 1998. Clemson’s 10-game winning streak against Wake Forest at Death Valley is its seventh double-digit home winning streak against a single opponent in school history and its second such streak against Wake Forest (16 straight home wins in the series from 1963-91).
  • Wake Forest entering a game with Clemson ranked higher than the Tigers in the AP Poll for only the fourth time in what will be the teams’ 87th all-time meeting.
  • Clemson attempting to win at least six regular season conference games for an 11th straight year to pull within three of the longest streak of six-plus-win conference seasons in ACC history (Florida State, 14 from 1992-2005). Clemson’s longest streak in school history prior to the current 10-year streak was three (1981-83).
  • Clemson attempting to win its 34th consecutive home game to extend its school record for both the longest home winning streak and longest home unbeaten streak in school history (as well as extend the nation’s longest active home winning streak). Of the 131 players on Clemson’s 2021 roster, 126 have never experienced a home loss in their Clemson careers. Five sixth-year “super seniors” on Clemson’s 2021 roster were on the 2016 team that recovered from a home loss to Pitt by winning the national championship that season.
  • Head Coach Dabo Swinney attempting to improve to 13-0 as a head coach against Wake Forest. Wake Forest is one of five ACC schools against whom Swinney is undefeated as head coach, a list that also includes Duke (3-0), Louisville (7-0), Virginia (5-0) and Virginia Tech (6-0).
  • Swinney coaching on his 52nd birthday. Clemson is 1-0 on his birthday under his watch with a 30-10 win in 2010 in a game that was also played against Wake Forest. Swinney also served as wide receivers coach for Clemson’s 29-7 win against South Carolina on his birthday in 2004.
  • Clemson attempting to record 400 yards of offense in consecutive games for the first time this season.
  • Clemson attempting to throw for 300 yards in backto-back games for the first time since last year’s ACC Championship Game and Sugar Bowl.
  • Clemson entering the game having surrendered only 14 offensive touchdowns this season, third-fewest in the country.
  • Wide receiver Beaux Collins attempting to catch a touchdown in three straight games for the first time in his career. He would be the first Clemson true freshman to accomplish the feat since Deon Cain recorded a touchdown reception in five straight games in 2015.
  • Defensive end Myles Murphy, who had 1.5 sacks last week, attempting to become the first Clemson player with 1.5 or more sacks in consecutive games since Clelin Ferrell against Texas A&M and Georgia Southern in 2018.
  • Placekicker B.T. Potter (312 career points) needing 17 points to tie or 18 points to pass Aaron Hunt (329 from 2000-03) for fourth on Clemson’s all-time leaderboard for career points.
  • Potter entering the game with five career field goals of 50 yards or more. He is presently tied for the school record for career 50-yard field goals with Chris Gardocki (1988-90) and Donald Igwebuike (1981-84).
  • Running back Will Shipley (seven) chasing No. 4 Ronald Williams (eight in 1990), No. 3 James Davis (nine in 2005) and No. 2 C.J. Spiller (10 in 2006) on Clemson’s leaderboard for rushing touchdowns by a true freshman since 1972.
  • Shipley attempting to become the first Clemson true freshman with multiple 100-yard rushing games in a true freshman season since 2018 (Lyn-J Dixon, two).
  • Linebacker Trenton Simpson attempting to record at least a half-sack in five consecutive games for the first time in his career.
  • Quarterback DJ Uiagalelei (four) needing one more rushing touchdown to surpass his single-season career high (four in both 2020 and 2021).

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