Clemson is in a unique situation right now as their fate is no longer in their control after the team lost 35-14 to Notre Dame. They dropped from No.4 to No.10 in the last College Football Playoff rankings though there were people who felt the team deserved to drop further.
After a solid win against Louisville, where the Tigers played well, Swinney and his team will look to gain momentum heading into bowl season. If Clemson can win out, they will have a shot at the Playoff.
According to USA Today Sports’ latest College Football Playoff bowl projections, Swinney and the Tigers will take the final spot in the top four. Here’s what USA Today’s Erick Smith had to say about Clemson:
Which brings us to either Clemson or North Carolina. The ACC championship game clash could provide the springboard for both teams whose only blemish is a loss to Notre Dame. The winner could be in the same position as 25 one-loss champions from the Power Five in the eight previous years of the playoff. In those instances, 22 made the playoff. The three that missed – TCU and Baylor in 2014 and Ohio State in 2018 – all had places taken by other one-loss champions or an unbeaten Notre Dame.
No one-loss champion has been knocked out by a one-loss, non-champion. With that in mind, Clemson has the best chance to make the field, though that certainly would ignite a controversial debate should the scenario unfold.
Though the loss to Notre Dame hurt the Tigers, this team still has a good chance at making the top four with a strong end to this season. If Clemson starts clicking over these next few weeks, Swinney and the Tigers could be fighting for a National Championship opportunity.
Here’s a look at the full bowl projections:
ACC power rankings heading into Week 12