Jan. 11, 2012
CLEMSON, SC – Clemson ranked 22nd in the final Associated Press and USA Today polls released on Tuesday. The Tigers finished the season with a 10-4 record, including a 6-2 mark in the ACC. The Tigers defeated Virginia Tech 38-10 to win the ACC Championship game on December 3, the school’s first ACC title since 1991.
Clemson was unranked in the preseason poll after a 6-7 mark in 2010. The Tigers were one of seven schools to finish in the final AP top 25 without being ranked in the preseason. The others were Michigan, Baylor, Kansas State, Houston, Southern Mississippi and Cincinnati. Clemson was one of four schools to finish in the final top 25 without receiving a single poll point in the AP preseason poll. The others were Baylor, Kansas State and Cincinnati.
This is the second time Clemson has been ranked in the final top 25 in the three full years Dabo Swinney has been the school’s head coach. He joins Charley Pell and Ken Hatfield as the only coaches in Clemson history to lead the program to a final top 25 ranking in his first three years as head coach.
Clemson won four games against top 25 teams this year (at time of the game), Auburn, Florida State and Virginia Tech twice. Virginia Tech was ranked 10th prior to the Tigers 23-3 win at Blacksburg on October 1, then the Hokies were third in the USA Today poll prior to the ACC Championship game. This is the most top 25 victories in one season in school history.
The 2011 season marked the fifth consecutive odd numbered season that Clemson has not been ranked in the preseason top 25, but finished in the final op 25 of the AP poll.
Overall, this is the 26th season Clemson has been ranked in the top 25 of a final AP or coaches poll, the sixth time since the 2000 season.
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