Sept. 7, 2009
Complete Game Notes
The ACC’s Most Competitive Series The Clemson vs. Georgia Tech series has been the most competitive series in the ACC over the last 13 years. Ten of the last 13 games have been decided by five points or less, including a six-game streak between 1996-01 in which every game was decided by exactly three points. That might be a first in college football history. We aren’t talking by three points or less, but exactly three points. Last year’s game was a 21-17 Georgia Tech win in Dabo Swinney’s first game as Clemson head coach.
Clemson was last victorious in 2006 behind the running of James Davis and C.J. Spiller. The duo combined for 332 yards rushing and four touchdowns, three rushing, in the 31-7 Clemson win. Spiller had a 50-yard run and a 50-yard reception, the first player in Clemson history to get one of each from at least 50 yards in the same game.
Georgia Tech was victorious in 2005 in the lowest scoring game in the series in 14 years when Tech won 10-9 in Atlanta. That was Clemson’s only loss over the last seven games of the 2005 season. Clemson cut the margin to 10-9 on Jad Dean’s third field goal of the game with 5:36 left, but the Tigers were hurt by a holding penalty on their last possession.
Georgia Tech has won four of the last five meetings and three of those four wins have been by a touchdown or less. Clemson has struggled to score in Atlanta, in fact Clemson has not scored a touchdown in Atlanta since 2003 when it won 39-3 behind current San Diego Chargers quarterback Charlie Whitehurst.
The last time Clemson won in Atlanta (2003) , the Tigers defeated Middle Tennessee by a 37-14 score the week before. Clemson enters this year’s game in Atlanta coming off a 37-14 win over Middle Tennessee.
Georgia Tech has a 47-24-2 lead in the series with Clemson dating to a 23-0 Tiger win in Augusta, GA in 1898, just the 11th game in Clemson football history. In fact, Clemson won the first four games of the series, including games in 1902 and 1903 when John Heisman was at the helm. Clemson defeated Georgia Tech in Atlanta 73-0 in 1903 with Heisman as head coach. Heisman then left Clemson after that season to become Georgia Tech’s head coach.
Since Georgia Tech joined the ACC in 1983 the teams have split 26 games. Tech actually joined for the 1979-80 academic year, but did not compete for the football championships, nor play Clemson as an ACC game, until 1983.
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